Sunday, August 07, 2011

A morning on House Mountain with the Envirocapitalist.

House Mountain is a 500-acre natural area located in Knox County approximately eight miles from Knoxville. It is cooperatively managed under a lease agreement with the State by the Knox County Department of Parks and Recreation. The 2,100-foot crest of House Mountain provides significant vistas where visitors may scan the parallel ranges of the Unakas and Cumberlands some 30 miles away, or look northeast at the adjacent Clinch Mountain.  It is rugged and scenic and very representative of the region.  I love taking my son there because we can get the feel of back country with out the long drive.
Parking area at trail head as we left

Big Ry and I left the parking area at daylight since it was going to be a hot July day.  We had the parking area to ourselves. It is fairly nice even though there is no running water or electricity. The bathroom is really just a pit privy but is well ventilated and didn't stink as bad as most public restrooms.
Signs were made by a local Boy Scout.
A short walk from the parking area led us to the trail head junction. Both of these trails lead to the 3 mile long crest trail which  have scenic overlooks at both ends and one in the middle. We did all the trails today making it about five total miles.
Rocky outcrops on the southern slope

The trails leave the bottom and pick there way through extremely rocky and beautiful slopes until they reach the crest trail.  The rock formations are great to climb on and explore or just sit on to take a break.
Big Ry having lunch at West Overlook

After reaching the top we made haste out the much easier and flatter crest trail  to the East overlook and bushwhacked out to a third vista (my favorite) which is often used for illegal camping (no one allowed up here after dark).  We moved on to the west overlook and had lunch (snack). Which consisted of a granola bar, gummies and a fruit juice pouch, you now real adventure food.  After packing up we set out to finish the hike.

Big Ry leading the way

Steep and rugged

Falling rocks always a danger
Sliding our way down we dodged a few rocks that let go of the steep slopes. We also past the first hiker's of the day. they were heading up. I can't imagine why someone would wait till noon to start this strenuous hike with temperatures predicted to hit the 90's. I was starting to really pour sweet and me and Big Ry were going downhill at this point.

Forty feet below our lunch time perch

We made our way out of our little wilderness no worse for wear but with our appetite for adventure whetted.  We agreed that we should do this more often and I thanked God for his creation and my son.   Please take a kid out of doors. It teaches them lessons and toughens them. I fear we may be raising a generation not able to overcome uncomfortable situations and deal with true adversity, Your pal the Envirocapitalist


  1. Good post. Glad you had a nice day with your son.

  2. Thanks Gorges, Any day outdoors is a good day. Your pal the Envirocapitalist