The best adventures have a way of setting their own course. The plan was simple enough--a short overnight trip to photograph the waterfall on Deep Creek near Yadkinville, North Carolina. By the time I left school, drove a couple of hours into the North Carolina Piedmont, and settled into my motel room it was already late afternoon. However, I couldn't resist using every minute of precious daylight so it seemed like a perfect opportunity to visit the nearby Guilford Courthouse battlefield. I had to fight five o'clock traffic to get there but the late day sun gave the scene a special quality and I enjoyed the special ambiance of the battlefield's hallowed ground. Unfortunately, when I returned to my room the motel network was down! So first thing this morning I had to scramble to finish my post before check out, leaving no time for comments--for which I apologize! Needless to say the busy maids were glad to see me set off for Deep Creek Falls with minutes to spare. It proved to be a nice setting, once the site of a large historic grist mill. Only the neatly stacked foundation stones remain. It is the most easterly of North Carolina's major falls and I was able to collect some nice shots of the wide, powerful cascade. There were also some particularly pretty ice formation glistening on the rocks. All my best adventures begin with "Since I'm this far...." And with that I decided to follow US 421 another hour north to Boone and check out a famous set of cascades at Jeffress Park along the Blue Ridge Parkway. I had previously visited the cascades but a sudden thunderstorm interrupted the shoot. This time it wasn't rain but a light snow that greeted me at the trailhead. Even better, the cascades were decked out in more dazzling ice. In the calmer portions of the creek there were thin sheets of clear ice hanging above the water in intricate patterns, but where the cascade gathered forced and drop off the mountain through a powerful chute, huge icicles had collected. It should have been enough to satisfy any photographer. But as I made way back onto 421 the snow got a little heavier and I could see an even thicker cloud hanging over Boone itself. I just had to get a few snow shots. And with each mile further north that I drive the snow grew heavier. I couldn't have been happier. And then it occurred to me that I had never photographed a large waterfall in the snow. I pulled into a snowy parking lot, ripped open my trusty copy of Kevin Adam's "North Carolina Waterfalls," and before I knew it, I was pushing on to the Banner Elk area, famous for its many ski slopes. And here you see the results. This is Elk River Falls and what a day to make my first trip to see this mighty drop. Big white flakes flew all around me as I inched my way out onto the slippery rocks to take in this awesome scene. By the time I returned to the main road darkness had begun to set in, and so I here I sit in another hotel room looking back at a day that I never expected but won't soon forget. At least the internet works!