Summer Preparations

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Stillness characterizes daily heat and humidity along the Cumberland Plateau.  As evening approaches, the chorus of cicadas will be heard along with owls and woodland rustling.  Early summer storms give way to heat from mid July until September.  And early morning and evening fragrances permeate the surrounding woodlands and meadows, signaling all is ready for settling peace.

Daytime temperatures range from the 80ís to mid 90ís and average around 90.  Night time temps will range in the 60ís but often settle in the muggy 70's.   Summer is still a great time to find a shady cabin and write, journal, pray, read or rest in the mid day.  Evenings are generally cool enough to enjoy the lakes or hike the surrounding trails.

Deer, Rabbits, Squirrels, Raccoons, Turkey, and other wildlife are active during the nights and early mornings foraging in the abundance that may be found.  Bears occasionally visit the Close and surrounding woodlands.  So, please, be careful to take refuse to the dumpster.  And, food should be sealed and stored within the lodges.

We have prepared a bit of information to help you plan for your stay at The Close during the summer:

Early Summer (Mid June - Mid July):
Wake up to fresh scents of the woodlands. It is a good time for cool drinks, journalling, reading, study and prayer. Tufted Titmouse and Goldfinch can still be spotted along the woodland edges. Woodpeckers, Turkey, Hawks, and Owls can be spotted as well. Remote areas on the Close and the National Forest are not as accessible and, in fact, are not recommended due to the abundance of snakes and biting insects. We ask that you still inform us when you plan to venture into the surrounding woodlands.

Fog builds in the surrounding gorge in the evenings, creeping into the saddle in the center of the Close and settling for the nights.  It is almost a nightly occurrence that lasts well into September.

It is best to layer your clothing with lightweight materials. Non-cotton garments are recommended. A rain shell should be worn over your clothing or, at least, carried with you.

Mid Summer (Mid July - Late August):
Daylight hours continue to lengthen and heat builds along the ridges.  Coves provide a respite.  Yet, gnats and ticks can be pesky.  So, bring repellant.  It is still a good time for rest, reading, journalling and communion with Christ.

Late Summer (Late August - Late September):
Heat wanes.  However, mid September brings occasional tidings of cooler days.  Morning and evening fog blankets the ridge saddles and surrounding gorge until the sun burns the moisture off the following day.

A Summer packing list should include: Socks, Boots, Dry clothes for cabin wear, Hangers to hang wet clothes, Capalene or poly layering garments, Cotton undergarments and outer garments can be worn but tend to stay damp. Remember a rain shell, food, zip lock bags, camera, binoculars, blankets, sleeping bags, twin size bed linens, light clothes for hot days, strong storage containers, drinking water, drink mixes, Bible, journal, pencil, drawing supplies, note pad, and other items specific to your goals on retreat.

Donít forget your insect repellent or dress to keep these pests away from your skin.