Monday, January 19, 2009

A Sunday Afternoon Adventure at Mint Springs Falls

Recently, my friend Marty Kittrell wrote a post for his blog featuring pictures of a little bit of paradise which lies off the beaten path in Vicksburg. It is a waterfall on Mint Springs Bayou, and Marty was kind enough to tell me how to get there.
If you have not discovered Marty's photography blog, I hope you will visit him. I guarantee that you will be awestruck by his talent, both as a photographer and writer.
Before I begin our adventure, I'd like to share a couple of interesting side notes about Mint Springs:


Flatboaters who used to float raw materials down the Mississippi River often stopped at the mouth of Mint Springs Bayou, named after the wild mint plants that grew there. Vicksburg legend has it that the Mint Julep drink (bourbon, sugar, water, and mint) originated here when an inventive boatman tried adding mint to his whiskey and liked the taste. Vicksburg, however, is not the only place in the South that claims to be the source of the Mint Julep.
Another interesting note is that the bayou and its spring were important as a source of water for both sides during the Siege of Vicksburg. I can just imagine blue- and gray-coated soldiers declaring a temporary truce while there.

Now back to my story ... Yesterday was a gorgeous winter day in Vicksburg, with brilliant blue skies and warm temperatures in the high 60s ... and after gathering my camera, a light jacket, Marty's directions, and my boots, my husband and I set off in search of the falls. We didn't have far to go (about 15 minutes from our house!), and I couldn't wait to begin our "adventure."
And what an adventure it was, as we hiked through ivy-covered ground and trees along the path back to the falls ...


I loved the ivy, and it was everywhere -- even cascading over the falls!
As we meandered along the winding and often rugged path way before we saw the falls, we could hear the unmistakable sound of the water. Having been born and raised in Louisiana, I haven't seen many waterfalls up close and personal ... and to think there was one this close and so easily accessible, was truly thrilling. I couldn't wait to see it!
I didn't have to wait long and it was just breathtaking! (You can click on the pictures to enlarge them, if you'd like)


The mist from the falls and the sunlight created a beautiful rainbow effect ...


And the water rushing over the rocks (and my boots) was clear and cold ...

The moss- and lichen-covered rocks were beautiful and I could have taken hundreds of photos of them ...

If you click on the picture below you can see the individual leaves of the moss (?) on this rock ...

Above our heads along the rim of the bluffs surrounding the waterfall there were several large trees like this one literally clinging to the ledges ...

I want to thank Marty for sharing this awe-inspiring place called Mint Springs. I love its rugged natural beauty and look forward to going back again soon. I especially want to go back for another photo shoot in the spring before poison ivy covers up the path.

I leave you with this magnificent photo Marty took at Mint Springs, in the fall right after a rain (I hope you won't mind, Marty) ...



UPDATE:  Unfortunately, the area around the waterfall is currently off limits to visitors due to unstable terrain in the area.  The Park is committed to the safety of all visitors and anyone caught around the waterfall area is subject to prosecution for trespassing and can be fined if convicted.




















8 comments:

Beautiful Pear Tree Lane said...

There areonly two words that I can think of to describe these pictures: AWESOME!! and FANTASTIC!!. I enjoyed them so much.
Blessings,
Sue

southerninspiration said...

Gorgeous photos!! Thanks for taking us along on your fun adventure!
Suzanne

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Wonderful, photographs, Janie! And I love Marty's blog, too! :-)

XO,

Sheila :-)

salmagundi said...

Beautiful pictures. Thanks for the tour. Sally

bj said...

Oh, Janie...these are fabulous. I wish I could take photos like you!!

Sincerely Yours said...

Hi Janie! Just simply beautiful! Besides cows and trees Waterfalls are another favorite! Niagra and Great Falls, VA are 2 of my favorites because I just love the sound of water falling over rocks, nothing more peaceful and powerful to me!!! This is a really pretty one with the moss and ivy! Looks very secluded too! Great spot for a picnic when it warms up; or a thermos of hot choc and a warm arm around you!! Have a great Tuesday - Jeannette

Julie @ Sweet Chaos said...

Janie, this place is beautiful! I could feel the history of it all, evn through your pictures. You're so lucky to have been there! I consider myself lucky to have found your blog, so I could "go" there too! Thanks for sharing.

Diane@A Picture is Worth.... said...

Your photos are wonderful Janie! You have a real talent in photography! Mint Springs Falls is a beautiful place.

Diane