City to Trails

A city girl's journey to the trails of North Carolina

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Weather Woes

I have a serious love-hate relationship with spring. I love when the sun begins to stay out longer, a pleasantly warm breeze drifts through my windows (that I’m finally able to keep open), flowers blooming and birds chirping. There is nothing more breathtaking than seeing the mountains against a bright blue and clear North Carolina sky. Then, the rain begins. I swear, it feels like it goes on forever! I know, I know-April showers bring May flowers. Honestly, though, I could really do without the rain. I would never survive in the Pacific Northwest.

Of course, there are also days like today. I woke up and it was, once again, raining on my day off. Not only was it raining, it was starting to get very windy and very cold. So cold, in fact, that it started snowing. It’s the middle of freaking April! WHY is it snowing?!

Stupid spring! Teasing me with awesome mid 70’s and sunshine, then BAM! Mid 30’s and snow. I’m so over it.


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A Girl and Her Shoes

When I moved to Asheville, I didn’t realize the impact it would have on my lifestyle. I was pretty materialistic before moving here. After all, I came from an area where a local mall contained stores like Louis Vuitton, Neiman Marcus, and Tiffany & Co. Material things were what most people strived for, especially women. Looking back now, I can clearly see how silly those things really are. However, I sometimes find myself longing for the days of getting dolled up and showing off my new digs. These days getting “dolled up” and “showing off my new digs” takes on a whole new meaning.

I. Love. Shoes. I’m not really sure what it is with most women and their obsession with shoes, but I am certainly one of them. And, like most women, I have more shoes than I probably should. Before the move my closet consisted of mostly heels and flip-flops, I did live in the land of the flat, where it is hot all the time, and flip-flops are the norm even if its 40 degrees out. It’s a Florida thang.

So pretty!

So pretty!

What is my favorite pair of shoes? I’m so glad you asked! These little beauties. A gorgeous pair of Cole Haan leather penny loafer pumps. Too cute, right?? Surprisingly, these heels are very comfortable. They are made with Nike Air Technology, which made wearing them for an extended period of time very easy. Seeing as I used to work in an office for 40 hours a week and constantly needed to be in business attire, these were my go-to shoes. I loved them, and I still do. Although, now, they just aren’t practical. I see women, especially tourists, walking around downtown Asheville in heels and I always wonder how comfortable they are. Lets be honest, this town is set right in the middle of the mountains so all your walking is uphill and downhill, heels just can’t be that comfortable. But, who am I to judge.

Now that I work retail for an outdoor outfitter, heels almost seem silly. Almost. I am always fighting the urge to buy a pair of heels just because I say “Ooohhh, these are so cute!” Instead, I say “Oooohhh these are so comfy!”, then I buy them. I have officially traded in my heels for Oboz hiking boots and Chacos. The flip-flops I will never give up, they are still somewhat practical. They are completely practical if they are Chaco Flips!


The Plan

About a year ago I started to plan a camping trip, and not your standard car camping. I wanted to load up a pack (something I still don’t have) and camp “off the grid” for a few days. Then, I started my research. Big mistake. It scared the crap out of me! Everything I was reading reminded me of an episode of Man vs. Wild and I am far from Bear Grylls. My planning came to a complete halt. There was absolutely no way I could hack it in the woods for 3 days.


Now, my plan has completely changed. I still want to try backpacking, but its all about baby steps.  I work for one of the major outdoor retailers in town. I am surrounded by people who have done these sorts of things hundreds of times. Many of my friends spend their off time relaxing and taking in the beautiful nature that surrounds us. Boy, am I lucky! I know that I won’t be hiking and camping alone for a long time. Actually, that will probably never happen because I am too paranoid, but I finally have people who will let me tag along and annoy them with my unrelenting questions of hows, whys and what ifs.

Challenge/plan number one- convince someone to take me on a hike.

Challenge/plan number two-keep an open mind.

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The Back Story and the Decision

Asheville, North Carolina is set in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Travel just outside of the city and an abundance of outdoor activities awaits you. Rock climbing, hiking, kayaking, camping, white water rafting, you name it and Asheville has it. So, why on earth would a city girl who has no desire to do any of those activities choose to live there?

It wasn’t really my decision to move to Asheville. Yes, I agreed to move, but I wasn’t the one to say “Hey, lets move to North Carolina”. Prior to moving here, I had never stepped foot into the state. I moved with my (now ex) significant other. It was a way to escape from Florida and at that moment in time I was desperate for a change. We sold everything we owned and moved here with no job, no place to live and a very limited plan. It all worked out in the end and now I’ve been here for almost three years, but there has consistently been one problem. I’ve never fully emerged myself in the Asheville lifestyle.

In order to call myself an “Ashevillian” I have decided that I need to act like one. I’ve got a few of them under my belt already. For instance, dancing at the Drum Circle on Friday nights. Check. Learning to hula hoop. Check. And the most important (at least in my eyes) drinking the local brews. Multiple checks. As a matter of fact, I think I’ve mastered that one! But, I’m still lacking in the outdoors department. That is all about to change.