3rd Annual Hiking Trip to Pisgah National Forest + Video ☀️

Hi, Everyone! Happy Friday 🙂

I have an insanely busy weekend coming up mixed with work projects and plans with friends. I’m crossing my fingers I get everything done. Between working on other posts, I’ve been putting together this annual hiking trip blog along with a fun little video. I couldn’t get through the weekend without sharing the fun with you all.

When Becca (my best friend) and I met, we were both in pretty low places in life. I was ending a crappy relationship while fighting my own battles, she was dealing with her struggles while living in a city where she didn’t know anyone, and it’s almost like God planned for us to meet. We instantly became best friends; she is the sister I never had. We started going on walks together, drinking wine on my apartment’s balcony, visiting antique stores, doing photography, and taking many road trips. We pulled each other out of our slumps and helped build each other up to where we are now. I’m so lucky to have a friend like her.

For the past three years, we have made a trip up to Pisgah Forest to hike Looking Glass Rock trail. She asked me to go with her the first time as a celebration of her going an entire year without smoking. Well, now it’s been three years. And I can’t wait for more to come! I had her write up a blog post the first year we went, so make sure to read here to learn her story.

Blog Post Year One // Blog Post Year Two

While I write this post, our little video is being uploaded to YouTube. I am no video guru, so the quality will be improved in the future (no cell phone videos from now on), and I’ll be using a different video camera specifically for filming. If you don’t care for videos, no worries! I’m here with the usual blog post, something I actually know how to do.

Becca and I met up at 10 am to head out for our hike. I had planned on stopping at Earth Fare for snacks, but they shut the highway down because of an accident, so I had to take the backroads. I decided to just pick up some snacks at Starbucks while we got coffee. They always have some pretty unique and healthy snacks (expensive, but better than nothing.)
I was sad when I left my Pisgah trail mix at home! This would have been so fitting for our hike since we were heading to the Pisgah forest.

With only one bathroom stop, we made it to the trail head! Looking Glass Rock is such a fun hike, and I highly recommend it if you’re in the area. I look forward to it every year. It’s a little over 6.5 miles, but since we venture off and explore random parts of the trail, we hit about seven miles on our trackers.

There are so many hikes in North Carolina that I need to do, so I’m adding them all to my list. Now that Kyle’s workload has died down a bit, he can come with me!
We have taken photos on this rock every year. It’s funny to see all the changes we’ve made. This has been one of the best years because we are both in great places in life. 
I’m so in love with my new Adidas windbreaker jacket. It’s super lightweight, and perfect for spring weather. It gets hot and cold while hiking, so it was the perfect medium. It comes in a ton of different colors! It’s on sale right now, and it comes in four different colors. I bought this backpack a year ago, and they finally put it back on the Fabletics site. It’s now 50% off! I’m honestly obsessed with it, and it’s held up incredibly well. It’s called the Outland Backpack. It has so many hidden pockets and sturdy compartments.
About two and a half miles up, there is a helicopter pad that we stop at each year. It’s tradition to get a photo with our peace sign. It looks like it’s faded but still there! We made it to the top!
Honestly, videos and photos don’t do this moment justice. It’s so breathtaking and tranquil up there. The Falcons are nesting, so you’ll see them flying around. 
We were so hungry when we got to the top. I didn’t get the chance to have breakfast, so I was running off of two vegan cookies and a cup of coffee. Thank goodness we brought snacks, and water! I love taking RXBARs on the trails 🙂 They have some awesome new flavors coming this summer! P.S. I’m obsessed with my Hydro Flask bottle. My water was still ice cold when I got to the top. They are a bit pricier, but a great investment. I chose the blueberry color so Kyle could borrow it. I typically go for pinks or purples 🙂 
Every year, we do the jellybean cleanse. (what is the jellybean cleanse?)
Chocolate Sea Salt & Peanut Butter Chocolate are two of my faves!
Holy moly, those Emmy’s Coconut Vanilla Bean Cookies taste just like Almond Joys without the chocolate! THEY WERE INCREDIBLE! My newest addiction for sure. If you like coconut, you have to try these! Now, I have to try their other flavors. 
Time to make our way back down! 
By mile six, we were ready to go!
We want to come back when the trees are full. It still looked like winter in the mountains. 
I think we ran into maybe two people the entire time! I don’t think you should do this trail alone without some protection. Becca and I always carry pepper spray, first aid kits, whistles, and pocket knives. There are some weirdos in the world, and I watch way too much Dateline to not be prepared.
After our seven miles, we headed to the Looking Glass Waterfall! It’s right by the trailhead. 
The views never get old. 
And then we were off to our traditional ice cream stop, Dolly’s! This place is adorable! 
We decided to skip out on stopping for dinner, and headed back because we were zonked (we’re getting old!) We snacked on all the leftovers on the way home. Goodness, the drive home was so pretty! The sun was setting, and the scenery was breathtaking.
Questions for you!

  1. We need a good pair of hiking boots, that aren’t too heavy! Any suggestions?
  2. Is there a favorite hike of yours that we should travel to?
  3. Tell me something that you’re proud of your best friend for.

After commenting with your answers, head over to my YouTube channel to watch our video!

Comments

  • Kelsey

    I love the meaning of this hike and the jellybeans, ya’ll have such a great relationship. I love seeing the transformation of Becca from the first time to now. I know she has to be so proud. I would have to say I am proud of my best friend for not giving up on her infertility. She will be having a beautiful baby girl in June. <3

    Reply to Kelsey
  • Lauren

    I love Solomon hiking boots! They aren’t as stiff as typical hiking boots and aren’t heavy, but hold up great. I’ve taken them for 10-12 mike hikes and they are really supportive

    Reply to Lauren
  • Sammy

    You should check out REI!

    Reply to Sammy
  • Sara

    Your video was so cute! You and Becca should do more!

    Reply to Sara
  • Kami

    How far is that from Charlotte?

    Reply to Kami
  • Stace

    I ate at Plant a couple days ago and want to thank you for the recommendation!

    Reply to Stace
  • Melissa

    I absolutely adore your blog posts! They’re so inspirational! I love what you do, and the things you post is exactly the kind of things I’m interested in.

    Reply to Melissa
  • Heather

    I love that hike! We do it every spring and camp up at the top.

    I am going to email you a list of hikes in Asheville I think you would like.

    Reply to Heather
  • Melissa Hardcastle

    Always love reading about your yearly hike 😊
    Like others have said, Merrell is great for boots. They have a “good out of the box” slogan (meaning you don’t need to break them in) and they’ve held true to that every pair I’ve had. If you guys arent doing any serious backpacking you will be fine with a Mid as well, no need to spend the big bucks on the full high ankle support! Right now I have the Eddie Bauer Cairn boot and so far I love it. They’re full grain leather and also have Vibram soles too.
    Good luck on the boot hunt! 😊

    Reply to Melissa Hardcastle
  • Karie

    I look forward to this post every year! Keep up the great work girls.

    Reply to Karie
  • Anonymous

    What brand is your jacket?

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Anonymous

    What are your blue shoes?

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Emilee

    I love your jelly bean cleanse! I’m going hiking in Colorado at the end of the semester and definitely need to bring some along! I’m also looking for hiking boots and snow boots that aren’t too heavy. I unfortunately had to haul out my snow boots because we got a foot of snow in Milwaukee this weekend! My boots make me walk half as slow lol. I’ll have more hikes to recommend after Colorado, but my favorite right now is Starved Rock in Illinois. It’s out of the way but has beautiful trails with waterfalls and canyons for hiking and picture taking. 😊

    Reply to Emilee
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thanks, Emilee!!

      Definitely bring some jelly beans 😀 I can’t believe you got so much snow! It’s APRIL!!! grrrrr.

      That sounds like a gorgeous spot!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Janel

    What a fun trip, and you girls are beautiful. Becca, you look GREAT!! So glad you both are in an awesome place 🙂

    Reply to Janel
  • Amber RayAnn

    Oh my goodness I just teared up after reading the blog post for the very first hike. What a beautiful story! Both of you look so happy and healthy now, it’s inspiring to see that even when you’re in the midst of changing your life you can be happy. Thank you both for sharing that with us!
    My best friend sounds a lot like Becca, a year ago she packed her life into her car and drove to North Carolina to make a new life for herself. She’s so happy now and I love going to visit her.

    Reply to Amber RayAnn
  • Shelby

    I love Oboz. I work outside and wore those almost all year and they held up great. But if they don’t have the mesh your feet can definitely over heat.

    I have also been told that vibram has a sole warranty. So if you buy a shoe with a vibram sole and they shoes are still in good shape but the soles wear they replace the soles for you.

    Reply to Shelby
  • Felicia

    If you have wide feet people recommend keens
    Narrow or average feet Ahnus are super lightweight, comfy, and can look like “normal” shoes and not robust boot like. I’ve had my pair of Ahnus for 2 Years now and they’re holding up great! I’m a field biologist and I’m outside all the time. Mine are waterproof and I can walk though shallow creeks and puddles without fear of soggy feet. They’re super comfy right out of the box, cute and I highly recommend them!

    Reply to Felicia
  • Dana

    I love when you do videos! You have a great voice.

    My best friend had triplets and very complicated pregnancy! I’m very proud of her and can’t wait to meet the babies this weekend! They were so small that no one was allowed to see them the first two weeks.

    Reply to Dana
  • Allison

    Merrel Moab 2 are by far my favorite hiking boots! They have vibram soles (like chacos), are waterproof, lightweight, and offer ankle support! I live in Gatlinburg, TN so I enjoy hiking Abrahm’s Falls and Andrews Bald. I’m planning on hiking Mount LeConte and Gregory’s bald this year.

    https://www.rei.com/product/113731/merrell-moab-2-mid-wp-hiking-boots-womens

    Reply to Allison
  • Dani

    You girls are too cute. Becca looks great!

    I’m still looking for hiking boots so please share once you purchase!

    When will you be traveling to hawaii?

    Reply to Dani
  • Susie @ Mile High Dreamers

    It’s been a while since we’ve gotten to see Becca in a post and I’ve gotta say that she looks AMAZING! She just seems to be glowing with happiness. And she’s got one of those smiles that makes you just smile back (even if it’s on a computer screen haha). I love your guys’ friendship story. My closest friends have made the biggest impact in my life and helping me become who I am now. Good friends are GOLD.
    Idk about the hiking boots but I need a pair since I usually just use running shoes that I then roll my ankle with. So please share once you find a good pair!

    Colorado! Endless amazing hikes. A 14er would be such a good challenge and bonding experience.

    My best friend Emily is the MOST incredible single mom I’ve ever met in my life. I honestly don’t know how she does it. She works her butt off to provide for her daughter, is a loving mother, a great friend, is selfless, strong… My list goes on but the bottom line is that I’m constantly in awe her. Her sweet, kind, and genuine daughter is a true testament to how wonderful she is!

    Reply to Susie @ Mile High Dreamers
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Susie!

      I know! I miss living closer to each other! We now live like 45 minutes apart and it’s so hard with our schedules to align, but we are going to do a better job at it!

      She is so happy and in a great place! So so so proud of her. So glad you have friends that lift you up as well 😀

      I’ll totally share! I will be trying out some new ones before heading to Hawaii! I need to make it out to Colorado so we can hike together!

      Your best friend sounds so inspiring!!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Robinlynn

    OMG Becca looks amazing!!!! I would love to hear more about her weight loss journey. She obviously has made big changes in her life that have had a lasting effect. She is so happy, fit, and healthy looking. Just wonderful!

    Reply to Robinlynn
  • Linda @ the Fitty

    Becca sounds sweet! Must be nice to have a friendaversary hike like that. Where were you thinking about stopping by for dinner anyway?

    Reply to Linda @ the Fitty
  • Brooklyn

    I love the idea of the jellybean cleanse. It must feel so therapeutic. I miss hiking. I live in Vancouver so there are many incredible hiking trails, but no one I know wants to go with me! And there are loads of black bears and mountain lions, so no way am I going alone!

    Off to watch the video!

    http://www.justbeingbrooklyn.com

    Reply to Brooklyn
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Brooklyn!

      Thank you 🙂 My mom used to use them as a way to teach us about happy lungs lol

      OMG if I was in Vancouver, I’d be going with you all the time! Have you thought about joining a hiking group?

      xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Brit

    Hi Tara! I had to chime in on the hiking boot question as I love hiking and I have two pairs. I have Scarpa boot that is a bit studier, but still lightweight that I find is well suited to longer distance hikes and then I also have a Merrell hiking shoe that looks a bit more like a sneaker and can be used for trail running. I love them both! Hope that helps! Ps you and Becca should plan a hiking trip to BC in Canada 🙂 or Canmore/Banff in alberta, you would love it!!!!

    Reply to Brit
  • Kelsey Weissner

    Hey Taralynn! Looks like you both had an amazing trip! I love you sharing your story with how you two crossed paths. Where exactly did you two meet? As I’ve gotten older, I’ve really struggled meeting like-minded girls to be friends with. I wish there was something like a dating site but to meet friends haha.

    Have a great weekend! xo Kelsey

    Reply to Kelsey Weissner
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Kelsey!

      Thanks so much 🙂 She actually used to work with my ex-boyfriend, so that’s how we met. So I guess good things come out of ehhh situations lol I totally know what you mean about making friends. I’m all about the quality of friends and never the quantity. I have to agree though, an app or site like that would be so cool! I’d totally do meet ups with people that want to play tennis, go for walks, and so on! I think you’re onto something 😀

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Emily L.

    I’ve been dying to go hiking again! I love y’alls annual hiking trip! The views are SO gorgeous! 😀 can’t wait for Alabama to make its mind up on the weather!

    Reply to Emily L.
  • Ann

    The jellybean story is so cute, I mean inspirational and effective! And I cried too, reading it. Both should be proud of yourselves for taking caring of you, because no one else will! ❤️

    Reply to Ann
  • Shannen

    I look forward to this post now! You’re friend has fun to watch grow and evolve! Both of you are an inspiration!
    As for a hike, if you are ever in sounthern Ohio check out Hocking Hills! It’s gorgeous!

    ps. the pic of you lying by the peace sign looks like a mermaid pic! 🧜🏼‍♀️

    Reply to Shannen
  • Carleigh

    Hike Havasupai falls in Supai Arizona. A challenging hike but a great beginner backpacking trip an amazing amazing views with waterfalls at the end. Permits go on sale every Feb 1 an sell out for the year within hours. I have waterproof Oboz hiking shoes which are great and also affordable!

    Reply to Carleigh
  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Gosh, I feel so lazy reading about your hiking adventures! 😉 I was never a hiking kind of person but seems like everyone where I live is hiking on the weekly, haha! I love the photos, Taralynn! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

    Reply to Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
  • Danielle

    Where are your pants from? The teal shirt?

    Reply to Danielle
  • Caitlyn

    I have a pair of Keen hiking boots that I’m personally obsessed with. They’re waterproof, sturdy, and not too heavy. Maybe those will work for you!

    Reply to Caitlyn
  • Krista

    This hike looks like so much fun!! If you haven’t been to Shenandoah yet, I’d highly recommend going to Loft Mountain. It’s the southernmost area of Shenandoah National Park in Virginia (and has the best campground and hiking (or so I’ve seen) in the whole park!! It’s a ways away but it’s totally worth the trip for a long weekend 🙂

    Reply to Krista
    • Taralynn McNitt

      I don’t know why I haven’t been there yet!

      Next time I’m in the D.C. area, I’ll make the trip! I’ve seen tons of pics and it does look beautiful! 😀

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Alex

    Yes!! All things Merrell are great. They got me through a semester in New Zealand/AUS

    Any trail on the AT, esp Charlie’s bunion!!

    Reply to Alex
  • Marvin

    You and Becca are so beautiful. I love your friendship and story!

    Reply to Marvin
  • Samantha

    How do you get your hair to look like that!? I absolutely LOVE it!!!

    Reply to Samantha
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Lol thank you, Samantha! I actually just let it air dry, add some leave-in conditioner, and use a straightener to curl it. It takes like fifteen minutes!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt

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