We were invited to spend a day with friends who live in the area. Thank you Doris and Clarence for showing us all those wonderful places in the area. We traveled over to Helen, Georgia. Decades ago the town decided to focus the downtown area on Alpine architecture and Bavarian culture.
'Just beyond Helen was the Old Sautee Store. First opened in 1876. It was great. The front is original with walls filled with items that would have been sold in the early years of the store. The back opens into a newer store area that includes lots of local food and crafts.
Along the way we passed a church and directly across from it a field with an Indian burial mound.
In Helen, we had lunch and shopped. It is a great town with a river running right though the center. Tubing is popular and we were entertained by them passing below us as we had a great lunch.
After that we visited the Dahlonega Gold museum. It was fun and the people were very informative about how gold was first discovered in the area causing the first gold rush.
Then on to the Crisson Gold Mine where we panned for gold and gems. For $10 you get a pan of crushed ore and a bucket of gem sand. Everyone had a little gold in there pans. Doris had 3 small nuggets. We went home with small vile with our gold and sandwich bag of gems including two sapphires and a ruby each the size of a marble. By the time we finished all of us understood that panning for gold was not as easy as it looks.
We enjoyed the drive through the mountains, valleys, expansive views, and rising into and out of the clouds. The area is lush and beautiful during the summer. We must come back again in the fall sometime to see the fall colors.
We are a couple who have started on a new adventure...