Down the road that goes to Elkinsville (or went to Elkinsville) is Browning Mountain. At 920 feet, I am not sure why it is called a mountain. I thought 1000 feet made a mountain…but I got that info from a movie in which cutie pie Hugh Grant played the lead … so you know, there is a slight possibility I am wrong! I am not bothered by that in the least. 🙂 Hugh Grant is “The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill and Down a Mountain” and very persuasive!
Over the years, I have heard some mysterious, almost magical, stories about the stones on top of Browning Mountain. These stones, which are quite large, are not native to the area and no one really knows how they came to be on top of Browning Mountain. Today was my day to climb the mountain!
Getting to the trail head was not a problem. We followed Elkinsville Road through Story, passed the Nebo Ridge Trailhead (stopped to get a map for future hike!), then went another mile or so until we saw the canoe rental place. We turned around there and backtracked about a 100 feet to find a spot to park on the side of the road next to the trail.
The first part of the trail is pretty steep, then you continue to climb along the ridge. We encountered several blow downs … seems to be a pretty regular occurrence on the ridges in Indiana.
It was a great day though, blue skies, gentle breezes, so the climb up was mostly delightful! We missed a right turn onto the trail that goes to the mysterious rocks somehow and kept walking for quite some time until we came to a fork in the trail. At this point, my sister, Rowena, was pretty sure we had come too far but wasn’t completely and totally sure, so we took the trail marked with two orange ribbons which headed to the left. When we started to go steeply downhill, Rowena decided indeed this was not the right way. So we back tracked to the fork and took the other branch…after another 15 minutes…nothing.
Rowena had cell service so we looked on line for a website that might have a map or clues for which to look.
A geocache site stated that “There is a hidden intersection on the trail (look for the large, fallen tree that blocks the trail).” Okay, that is the STUPIDEST clue ever!!! There were at least FIVE THOUSAND large, fallen trees on the trail!!!
At least we knew two things now 1) the trail to the rocks was behind us and 2) the trail to the rocks was near a fallen tree. Alrighty-let’s go!
On our way back, we met a nice family from Cincinnati with two young girls. Together we found the trail without too much drama, Yay!
The rocks were pretty cool…but the whole spot is beautiful. Both my sister and I took some time to lay on the rocks and look up at the sky. Very nice!
The adventure did not stop with Browning Mountain! On our way back home we stopped in at the Freetown History Museum, a one man operation in Freetown, Indiana. My sister volunteers at the Lawrence Co. Historical Museum so this was especially interesting for her! I wasn’t expecting anything, so of course, I end up finding something amazing!
Basketball history! But not your typical basketball history. The history of basketball in Freetown, Indiana. And…here’s the thing…the girls had a basketball team in Freetown BEFORE the boys! Check out the girls bball team from 1921 or 1922 in the photos below.
This is so cool…and if Freetown had a girls team, then that means other towns would have had girls teams also, right? They had to play other teams! I want to know more…so if anyone out there knows anything about girls high school basketball teams in Indiana…let me know!!!
Keep exploring, learning and as always, Hike on!