The bridge, the Falls, The Hunger Games and me

Oh, good – We’ve been hearing thunder for hours now and Polly is cowering and shaking under my desk.

That’s perfect mood music to finally finish this blog post from our June road trip, which included hiking in North Carolina’s DuPont State Forest.

Note the bridge; you’ll see it again later.

What’s three times better than a single waterfall? As soon as we climbed over the guardrail and onto on the Triple Falls trail we saw large plants, roots wrapped in burlap, lining the trail near the highway. Hmm…

We hiked to the crest of Triple Falls, and it was lovely. It was also devoid of other people, because all the sane ones had already headed back down the trail. The sky had turned black and thunder rumbled closer and closer.

When The Man finally finished taking pictures, we started back down the trail in the rain, dragging 60 pounds of terrified dog. By the time we got to the road, lightning was crashing all around us. This was not the smartest time to cross a bridge.

So we climbed down under the bridge to ride out the storm. Pretty soon a couple of ATVs pulled up under the bridge next to us and two guys started grabbing the plants by their root balls and loading them on the ATVs.

Turns out The Hunger Games was being filmed in the DuPont State Forest and apparently Mother Nature hadn’t put out quite enough greenery for the movie’s post-apocalyptic vision (I haven’t read The Hunger Games yet so I might be misrepresenting the scenario here.) The woods looked just fine to me: lovely, dark and deep – but I’m a writer, not a cinematographer, so maybe Lionsgate really did need those extra rhododendrons.

Eventually half a dozen other guys showed up under the bridge. They were part of the film crew rather than the landscape crew and the pecking order was clear. The head guy was wearing probably a thousand bucks worth of Patagonia and North Face gear. The other younger, scruffier guys shuffled around trying to impress him, nodding and chuckling whenever he said anything.

But the day’s filming schedule was shot and, expensive gear or not, everyone was soaked to the bone. Head guy pointed, his crew nodded in unison and followed him like sheep back out into the rain.

The rain came down like crazy for about an hour. Can you tell how wet it was? These individual rivulets were gushing out of the bridge drainage holes. Oh, yeah, and we had hail, too.

When we got home from our trip, I found this on YouTube and realized that if we’d tried to hike to Triple Falls a day earlier, we would have been stuck in traffic like everyone else and out of luck.

11 comments to The bridge, the Falls, The Hunger Games and me

  • How cool is that! Not the rain, but running into a film crew as an unexpected plus to a wet (and for poor polly, frightening) day. On the bright side, at least the rain allowed you to take a breather under the bridge. Hiking always seems to get harder instead of easier.

    • Oh, and as for The Hunger Games, I haven’t read the series yet. It is way down on my new chronological list of reading. I might get to it by the 25th anniversary of the movie’s release. LOL

      • I’m definitely more interested in reading it and seeing the movie now that I have the bridge experience. And yes, I was beat after running down the side of the mountain – much harder for me than going up.

  • That was some rain/hailstorm! They don’t come down with that much vigor where I live. Glad you found a safe place to wait it out. And, wow, met up with the film crew. Another great adventure with scene-writing potential.

  • Southern thunderstorms are awesome. A lot of houses here at the beach are built up so a tidal wave can flow under them (gulp) and so the main floors are basically the second and third floors. I love to turn all the lights out (if the storm’s bad enough the power’s out anyway) and watch the lightning from what I hope is a safe perch near the tree tops.

  • Fun for you but not for poor Polly. There’s a couple of scenes in The Hunger Games in the rain, I wonder if it helped with the filming? I enjoyed the books. The first one I had trouble putting down, the second and third not as good as the first.
    Thanks for sharing your vacation with us.

    • I think it was raining so hard it would have damaged the cameras. Did you read the books with Katelyn? (I don’t know if I spelled that right.)

      • You almost got it right. Kaitlin won’t read these now that they’re so popular. I got VERY sunburned on the first day of my vacation and had to find something to do in the shade. I picked this up in a thrift store when there wasn’t much to chose from. I would complain…but I don’t have the heart. 🙂 Being lazy with a good book is always fun. I also read Like Water for Chocolate.

  • I had no idea! That’s awesome! I really enjoyed it too. A co-worker gave it to my on my last day of work. It was a nice vacation read. Have you seen the movie? Is it worth watching?

    She also gave me “The Handmaids Tale”. Have you read it?

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