This weekend over Fall Break we made a quick trip up to Highlands North Carolina. On Saturday morning we strolled up to Sunset Rock to get the kids out of the house before lunch. The trail head is located just past Mountain Fresh and only takes about 20 minutes to hike. There is parking across the street from the Highlands Nature Center on Horse Cove Road. Sunset Rock offers a stunning overhead view of the town of Highlands. In the morning the sun behind you provides beautiful light over the town, highlighting the fall colors.
In the evening the sun sets perfectly over Highlands. Below is a picture taken in November of 2015 over Thanksgiving.
This past weekend we set off for a little road trip to see some Phish shows. First stop was Pelham Alabama at Oak Mountain Amphitheater. We stayed in one of the hotels just behind the amphitheater making the evening very easy. One of the funnier pregame sightings was the swaying bridge between hotel row and the parking lot. Fans were rocking the wooden bridge back and forth making it very difficult to navigate. See the bottom of this post for a youtube video we made of the swaying bridge. The last time I had been to Oak Mountain was the last time Phish played there in 1999, 13 years prior. That September night in 1999 was really special, but who knew it would be 13 years before their return? The show was solid start to finish with a nod to the early years, no songs were played that debuted after the last show they played there…an average debut of 1992. Sand was probably the highlight of the show for me, but there was plenty of nostalgia throughout. Some that stuck out for me were Cities, DWD, the Wedge, a huge Boogie on >2001 and a rocking Good Times Bad Times to end the night.
 Live and Let Die teases from Trey.
 Oye Como Va jam.
On Saturday we headed back to Atlanta for Phish’s return to Lakewood Amphitheater. For the past few years they have been playing Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in Alpharetta. For this show we had lawn seats which in my book should come at a serious discount. Neither the sound or lights were up to par out there, so I was a little down on the show from the get-go. They opened with Cars Trucks and Buses and that set the stage for the night. There were several highlights but for me Golden Age stole the show. On paper the show looks pretty solid, it was just filled with a lot of songs that I would prefer to hear on the couch as opposed to the lawn.
Finally on Sunday we got up and headed out for Charlotte North Carolina. Martha and I love going back to Charlotte, and apparently so does Phish. They have been killing it there and did not disappoint in 2012. We were back under the shed for this show in section 208 on Page’s side. Opening with AC/DC Bag the stage was set for a big night, an old school one too. I could not have scripted this show any better with some of my favorites like Moma Dance, Bathtub Gin, Fluffhead, Tube, Bowie, Crosseyed and Painless, and the biggest Mike’s-Weekapaug sandwich you’ve ever seen stuffed with Tweezer and Harry Hood amongst others in the middle. What a fantastic way to end the 3 night southern run. Again an old school show where the average song debuted in 1990. It may very well be another year before they return to the South, but we will be here when they do.
Notes: Machine Gun (Jimi Hendrix) was teased by Trey and Fish before and during AC/DC Bag. During Alumni, Fish stated he didn’t have a degree and later said he did. After Alumni, Trey said that Fish did have a degree, adding that they met in 1983 at UVM and that Fish held a very interesting record: the lowest grade point average ever recorded at UVM. Fish added “for a non-fraternity student” and both Trey and Fish joked about Fish’s GPA (giving low numbers). Trey added that they were both saved by Page at Goddard and that Page earned $100 for recruiting them to Goddard. Trey introduced Tube and My Sweet One as Fishman songs, asking the crowd to count the number of times “you” appeared in the song. There was a delay in starting My Sweet One until Page said they have a lot of interesting stories (about Fishman), prompting Fishman to immediately start the song. Mike’s and Suzy contained a Crosseyed teases from Trey. BBFCFM included Trey singing into his microphone that he raised above his head, playing his guitar behind his head and running around the stage and Mike playing his bass on his knees.