Earlier this month, I was able to leave work early one Friday and head up into the Ozarks to visit Zack. He recently moved onto a piece of land located just outside the boundary of the Buffalo National River, which makes it the perfect basecamp for going out on a few excursions up in the hills. After dinner we headed out to an overlook that sits in the Ozark National Forest, with sweeping views over the mountains. We had to drive a bit to get there, heading down a few miles of bumpy dirt roads.
To get to the overlook we did a short hike along an old road trace, which didn't seem like it had much traffic lately since there were dozens of spider webs strung across the path. Eventually we made it to the overlook, which was situated on a long stretch of bluff that curved like a C above the dense woods below. Along the bluff was a thick carpet of moss and lichen.
It's a pretty spectacular view - showing miles and miles of forest and hills. There is hardly any signs of people or civilization - just a small cell phone tower on one of the distant mountains.
Unfortunately there were some traces of people along the bluff. There were two distinct spots along the bluff where the moss and lichen were burned away, evidence that people had recently had campfires there. Which seems so sadly careless and selfish. You couldn't sit a few feet back to set up your fire? Why would you want to set a fire right on the edge of the bluff anyways?
Oh well, at least the views are still pristine. Some clouds drifted in front of the sun and obscured most of the sunset, but the clouds were still pretty neat.
After sunset there were some splashes of color in the sky, along with the moon rising above the horizon. We stayed out there on the bluff shooting pictures and then hiked back the gloaming, but we did manage to get to the car before it got too dark to see.