Devil's Marbleyard and Foamhenge
A little late with this blog post, but better late than never! On December 30, as the end of my Christmas break was rapidly approaching, I decided to go on a photo-taking adventure before I lost my chance. It wasn't a particularly pretty day, but it was above freezing, so I figured I'd take what I could get.
I had recently seen pictures that someone posted on Facebook from some place called Devil's Marbleyard. It looked and sounded pretty cool, so I wanted to see it for myself. While researching the Marbleyard, I discovered that it was near Foamhenge, which I had heard about in college, but had never visited. So I decided to check out both places.
The website I had checked said it was a 3 mile hike to the Marbleyard, so I was happy to see this sign at the beginning of the trail. A shorter hike means more time for taking pictures! The website also said the hike took about 45 minutes though...and that turned out to be true. Uphill pretty much the whole way, it was slow going! (Only made slightly slower by the time I spent taking photos along the way...)
Les than a quarter mile down the trail, I came to a stream. There were a few rocks sticking out of the water, but there was no possible way I could make it across on them without getting thrown off balance by my camera bag. I walked along the edge of the stream trying to find a better place to cross, but no such luck. The temp was in the high 30s/low 40s, much too cold for me to get my feet wet and continue hiking. After debating for awhile, I went back to my car and got one of the towels I keep on the backseat. Went back to the stream, took off my shoes and socks, rolled up my jeans, and waded across. Slightly insane perhaps, but I hadn't just driven an hour and a half in order to be turned around by a stream crossing. Barefoot crossing seemed to be my best option, because I could dry my feet off on the other side and continue on my way. Thanks to my New England childhood, cold water really doesn't bother me all that much. At least, not for a short period of time...
Once on the other side, with dry feet, I continued on my way up the trail. For awhile, the trail itself was basically a very shallow stream. That was rather annoying, but I was able to walk along the edge without getting my feet wet. It was a relief when the trail finally dried out though and I could actually walk on the path. It was quite a hike, but eventually I reached the top and the Marbleyard stretched out in front of me, going up even higher. I didn't end up going all the way to the top, but I plan to next time I go.
The view was fabulous, but rather gray and brown. I am looking forward to going back in the spring or summer when it will be greener!
The hike back down the trail was much, much, faster than the hike up, since it was all downhill, and I didn't stop to take as many photos.
Foamhenge was right next to the road on the way back home, not too far from the Marbleyard, so I stopped there. The parking lot was really just a field, muddy with the Virginia red clay that I have not dealt with since college and haven't missed, but luckily there was just enough grass mixed in that my tires could find traction.
All in all, it was a fun adventure, if a bit on the gray/brown side. I will definitely be going back to both places in a prettier season!
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