December 16, 2012 – Blue Heron Trail – The Old Car
A friend of mine rides his mountain bike through one of Greensboro’s many hiking/biking trails (for something called exercise) and told me of an old car sitting in the woods. He knows I like to take pictures of old, abandoned things so I decided to take him up on the suggestion and hike to said vehicle.
In this photo, I’m standing about where the car comes into view. The trailhead begins where the parked cars are seen across the cove. If I could walk in a straight line (across water), it would be a 5-10 minute walk.
But no, the trail meanders through the woods where I know hidden beds of chiggers and dens of snakes are just waiting for my city-bought adidas shoes to come bumbling by.
But it’s a pleasant day with temps around 60F and I know my doctor would be proud when I tell him I went hiking . . . once, so off I go, carrying my water, Canon and Manfrotto monopod, dodging drug-enhanced mountain bikers (one talking to his friend about cauterizing a blood vessel), and feeling like Daniel Boone.
As I look around me, all I see are woods. Thick, dark and filled with dangers. Whether it be the aforementioned chiggers or Texas-Chainsaw-Wielding crazies (who lost their GPS and ended up in NC), I wonder how far in the wilderness I have to go to see this car.
The trail parallels the lake shore into the woods. Then the lake ends and trail keeps going. And going and going. Into the woods. It isn’t a difficult trail and has some nice little dips and bumps for the drug-enhanced cyclists. There are also some things that made me wish I brought more equipment, like my close-up tubes, but I managed to find a couple of interesting shots along the way.
Also along the way, there are a few subtle signs that you’re heading in the right direction.
And one not so subtle sign.
I’m not sure the Barrow gang ever made it into North Carolina. Also, I didn’t see this sign until after I shot the photos of the car – because I came from the other direction. But luckily, I did see the car from the trail, after about a 30-40 minute hike.
I’m not sure what kind of car it is as it’s pretty rusted out. So I decided to several photos for those who might want to try to identify the auto.
It’s (obviously) stripped down pretty bare and there are sheets of metal beneath the leaves around the car.
This shows it’s a four-door and the back doors could be some of the metal laying beneath the leaves.
Spacious trunk holds bodies – like in the movie Goodfellas.
I really don’t like litter. It’s seems to be an American pastime. At least I didn’t find old tires, refrigerators or other trash.
It’s a good thing the emergency brake is engaged or the car could have rolled down the hill. Wait, it doesn’t have tires. Never mind.
From the back window. I see where the speedometer, clock and radio went, but couldn’t find the hole for the CD player. Must have been an economy car.
So after about 20 minutes or so of shooting, I decided to make my way back to my own car (with a CD player). However I didn’t relish the thought of walking 40 minutes back through the chainsaw-crazy woods. So on the way back, I walk back to the point where the cove ends and decide that I can cut THROUGH the woods and make it to the trail (on the other side of the lake) and cut at least 30 minutes off the walk back.
First, just because the lake isn’t there, doesn’t mean it wasn’t there. And it leaves mud. The kind you sink in. At least I didn’t lose my shoes.
Next, while the cove ends, it turns into a creek. Just wide enough that I can’t jump over (I’m 6’4, 250 lbs, 55 years old and diabetic) and deep enough that I don’t want to try. However, I see a fallen tree that bridged the creek at an angle. All I have to do is step on the log, push off and land on the other side of the creek. While holding a water bottle, a camera and monopod. Did I mention that I’m 6’4 and . . . oh yeah, I did.
So I take a step back, step up on the log and leap to the other side, landing well over the bank . . . and in the soft mud-ground, falling forward onto another fallen tree. Lewis and Clark would have been proud. My old scoutmaster, not so much.
But I did make it to the other path and it did cut about 30 minutes off my walk, making it well worth the mini-adventure!