Thursday, June 23, 2005

Flip-flops aren't for touring

Yesterday morning I had no idea what I would be doing for the day. It was between lounging by the pool or heading out with Jim to some unknown destination armed with his new fancy-shmancy camera, which I covet.

I chose the latter, and we were off, driving around Chattanooga with no clear destination in mind. Eventually, the roads led to St. Elmo thanks to a question about Mojo Burrito. A few minutes later, lo and behold, we were at the foot of Lookout Mountain right in front of the Incline Railway, which transports folks up and down the (very, very steep) mountainside in a railcar.

I've lived in Chattanooga now for about 2.5 years, and I've done a lot of the cool touristy things our beautiful town has to offer. But I'd never ridden the Incline - and that's probably because there are perfectly good roads that lead up to the top of the mountain - why plop yourself on a railcar that goes backwards up the 72-degree angle that is Lookout Mountain? From what I've heard, it's for the fun of it! And it was exciting - fun, not so much, but it was quite interesting.

Once we got to the top of Lookout, we walked over to Point Park. Civil War history is practically every where in Chattanooga and our area, and Point Park was no different. The Battle Above the Clouds was fought up there, and Gen. Ulyssess S. Grant once stood atop the mountain looking down on a massive army ready to take him and his troops out.

There are cannons pointing out over the city where you can see for miles and miles. Yesterday it was very hazy, so our view was hampered. But it was breath-taking nonetheless.

We walked throughout the park, and it wasn't until two good-sized blisters had formed between my toes that I realized flip-flops really aren't the best choice of footwear for walking up and down a mountainside area. But, the park was gorgeous and the homes atop Lookout are absolutely beautiful old houses with stunning landscapes. It was worth a couple blisters.

After marveling at the scenery for a while and taking some pictures of a few wildflowers here and there, we headed back to the Incline station and hopped on the railcar to make the trip down the 1 mile side of the mountain to our car to head home.

They don't call Chattanooga the "Scenic City" for nothing, and I'm slowly finding all the beautiful reasons it got that name.