In addition to being able to serve and help out non-profit Christian organizations, SOWERs http://sowersministry.org have the advantage of being able to visit different parts of the country and do a little touring.
Since, at this project, we’re close to Stone Mountain in Georgia we took the day to go check it out. Our original plan was to go on a Friday and take the Skyride to the top. After checking out the website, we found out the Skyride was down Monday through Friday for maintenance so we went on Saturday.
When we arrived at the parking lot to pay our $20 to park for the day, we asked about the Skyride. The very helpful attendant said she thought it wasn’t running but would check for us so if we didn’t want to stay we wouldn’t have to pay the $20. She checked and told us it was down but we decided to stay anyway.
We drove around the park a little and came to where the Skyride gondolas were parked. The attendant there told us it was down because of wind and would probably be up a little later in the day. Okay, we thought, we’ll check back later. We really weren’t sure we wanted to take the hike to the top which the brochure listed as “strenuous” and taking about 100 minutes.
We did walk around to see the carving in the mountain. As we walked down the trail to the viewing area and this is the first thing we saw! Was everything really all blocked off?
Someone had told us earlier that it was past time for the laser light shows for this season. They were probably preparing for the winter events and the light shows then. Turned out that was what it was. At first, we thought we couldn’t even get close, but there were open trails that led us in front of the carving and we took the pictures below.
After reading some of the writings on the statues, benches, and plaques around the park it’s hard to understand how some people don’t think this country was founded on Christian principles.
About this mountain and carving.
According to Wikipedia, Stone Mountain is a quartz monzonite dome monadnock. (Disclaimer – I don’t know what that means. I thought the mountain was granite.) At its summit, the mountain is 1,686 feet above sea level and 825 feet above the surrounding area. The carving on the mountain was completed in 1972 and depicts Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, and Stonewall Jackson.
Jefferson Davis was the President of the Confederate States. He was a U S Senator from Mississippi and served in the House of Representatives prior to the Civil War. Robert E. Lee was a Colonel in the U S Army. He was appointed overall commander of the Confederate States and when Virginia succeeded from the union he went with his home state. Stonewall Jackson was a skilled military tactician and served as a Confederate General under Robert E Lee.
Stone Mountain Park is located just 16 miles east of Atlanta. They offer annual memberships and it’s easy to understand why people buy them. The brochure doesn’t say how much an annual pass costs but I don’t believe it is very expensive. The park has many walking trails and while we were there we saw many people hiking and biking. There’s also a Grist Mill and Museum to visit.
When we started to leave we decided to make a slight detour and go down on a road we hadn’t been on before. We came across a sizeable parking lot almost full of parked vehicles. So we got out to see what the attraction was. Turned out it was the start of the trails to hike up the mountain. We also saw a circle of flags that we went over to check out. This was a display of 5 Confederate battle flags with a little information about each one.
Before leaving there, we thought we should at least go stand on the mountain. Since there, why not walk up the mountain a little bit, right? Just a little way.
Well, about an hour later, we were at the top! And, guess what the first thing we saw way. The Skyride gondola pulling in! We were happy though that we actually made the hike to the top. It was strenuous so we stopped and rested a few times. Below are a few pictures from the trip to the top.
We’ve heard about Stone Mountain many times, but this was our first visit. I understand the laser light show and the other seasonal events are well worth the time and the cost to go visit. So, if you are in the area, you may want to check it out. I’m sure you can find the schedule and costs online.
The next post will probably be from our next SOWER project location in Vero Beach, Florida.
Follow us as we travel throughout the U.S.