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Interesting Alabama: Our Visit to the Talladega National Forest, Time with Harold and Glenda McCain

Dave Milton

November 2nd, 2015

My wife, Kelly and I had a great time this past Tuesday, traveling up to the Talladega National Forest to hike through some of the beautiful hardwood bottoms between the Mountains.  Many folks have no idea how beautiful our foliage is in the fall of the year, especially in the Appalachian part of the state.  One reason that folks miss out is that many of our roads in the foothills of the Appalachians run along ridges which are many times dominated by pine.

What Kelly and I did on Tuesday afternoon was to pull off the National Forest blacktop road and wander down old, overgrown logging roads that run down into big bottoms paralleling a couple of big beautiful rocky creeks (see our pictures).  You don’t have to go to New Hampshire to see vibrant fall colors; it’s just that many times in Alabama you have to get out of your vehicle and walk a little bit to find all that our Autumn woods have to offer.

Harold and Glenda McCain at their home on the edge of the Talladega National Forest

Harold and Glenda McCain at their home on the edge of the Talladega National Forest

Before we took our walk in the Talladega National Forest, we spent a little time with our friends, Harold and Glenda McCain who live just outside of the Forest in Clay County.  Harold and Glenda have a very interesting Creek and Cherokee ancestry that informs how they live today in many ways (listen to the bonus podcast on thelandshow.com to hear more about their Mountain family history).

In our radio interview on The Land Show, Harold shared many of his Mountain remedies like:  Sourwood for diarrhea, Prickly Ash for circulatory issues, Cherry Bark for a cough, Blackberry Root for stomach ailments, Yellowroot for Cold Sores and a mystery plant that grows along rocky creeks that Harold suggested that I rub its leaves on my poison Ivy.  I tried it and it worked fantastically.  Look at the pictures attached to this Blog and let me know if you know what the name of the plant that Harold is holding at: info@thelandshow.com

My wife, Kelly, on our hike in the Talladega National Forest

My wife, Kelly, on our hike in the Talladega National Forest

Kelly and I had a great day exploring the beauty of our Autumn woods and exploring with friends the largely unknown History of many Alabamians, like the McCains who trace back part of their  ancestry to Native Americans who hid out, avoiding the “Trail of Tears” or in some cases blended in, passing as “Black Irish” in the Alabama mountain land.  

 

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