On this Friend Friday, we decided to try a hike we hadn't done before at Big Soddy Gulf.
When we arrived, I was a little nervous because the parking lot felt kind of remote and there was no one else parked there. While we waited for our friends to arrive, we got out and read all of the signage at the trailhead.
The signs clearly said, "Beware of Bears" and the trashcan at the trailhead was bear proof. This made me a little nervous.
So I had a talk with the kids about keeping an eye out for wildlife and what we needed to do if we came across a bear. I also texted Daniel to let him know where we were and when we expected to leave.
The main trail in wide and flat, with a gravel and dirt surface on which my friend and I both easily pushed our strollers on it.
The first swimming hole we came to was about half a mile down the trail. Since there was no one in the parking lot, we were surprised to see vans and a ton of campers when we arrived there.
They were finishing up, but we watched them race homemade boats down the stream and look for fossils among the rocks.
The water was quiet cold and clear. Our kids jumped in, ignoring the cold water on this warm summer day.
When they started to look like they were turning blue, we got them out of the water and walked further down the trail to warm up while our littlest ones slept in their strollers.
We came across several more swimming holes, but they weren't really accessible with our strollers. The big kids warmed up and we went back to the original swimming hole to let swim for a bit longer before calling it a day.
The area is gorgeous, with beautiful turquoise water. The kids loved wading, swimming, and jumping off the rocks into the water. We will be back to this area for sure!