Ridges Mountain Nature Preserve

Ridges Mountain Nature Preserve is a hidden gem in Randolph County we were introduced to by the Triad Hiking Explorers and this hike’s leader, Mike Johnson. It is an easy hike and the boulders at the top are magnificent.

Ridges Mountain Nature Preserve

Right away I found a snake skeleton and proclaimed the trip a success. Of course I bagged it and brought it home.

Ridges Mountain Nature Preserve

An added plus is old stone walls in an area near an upland depression which could have been a small settlement or a trading post from the 17th-18th century.

Ridges Mountain Nature Preserve

You know how I love rocks and lichens and moss. Wow.

Ridges Mountain Nature Preserve

Clicking on one of these photos will take you to the set on Flickr. It was very hard for me to stop taking photos. Next time I will leave the camera at home and take a sketchbook and a picnic lunch. On another nice day in winter, because I hate to think about how many rattlesnakes are probably hibernating in all those nooks and crannies.

Ridges Mountain Nature Preserve

This is in the Uwharrie Mountains, the oldest mountain range in North America.

Ridges Mountain Nature Preserve

Almost forgot – Mike and his family own Caraway Alpaca Farm. We went by and met the girls. This is Rosie smiling for the camera. Beautiful alpaca yarn, roving, knitted, crocheted, and handwoven garments are for sale in their farm shop, and they sell alpacas as well.

Alpaca smiling for the camera at Caraway Alpaca Farm