After weeks of taking entries, five finalists in the Land of Waterfalls Getaway contest have been chosen. Now it’s up to you to pick the grand prize winner, the person who will ride the roads and trails of Transylvania County, N.C., on a new Specialized bike. To vote for a finalist, scroll down, check the box and hit Submit. The deadline for voting is March 17.

Help send Tiffany Baker to the Land of Waterfalls in North Carolina!

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Tiffany Baker

Tiffany’s entry

Tiffany Baker

I’m known as the Hummingbird because of the almost inhuman-like heart rates I hit while on the bike. I’d be thrilled at the opportunity to ride in the Land of Waterfalls. Here’s why.

Water fell, from the sky not a river. Although I’ve taken my hummingbird many different places on a bike, my attempt to mountain bike to the beautiful Snake Indian Falls in Jasper, Alta., was both epic and a failure. Just the drive to the trailhead requires a four-wheel drive and nerves of steel, but the destination is truly worth it—or so I’d heard. We never made it. We survived the drive. (I think I had my eyes closed most of the way.) As we got on our bikes and started the climb, my hummingbird heart was working so hard I told my boyfriend that he’d better do a lot of talking to make our presence known to bears, because there was no way I could do anything but try to breathe. We passed the first bear pie; it looked old thank goodness. The second one looked fresher. Just keep pedalling (and breathing!), the waterfalls will be worth it. They’d better be worth it. Spit, spit, spit. Rain? But there wasn’t a cloud in the sky when we drove in. Spitting turned into sploosh and suddenly we were drenched. No bear bells, fresh bear pies, kilometres ahead of more climbing, and now an epic mountain downpour. The only upside was that our race back to the vehicle was downhill. Oh, how I dream of a beautiful bike ride (road or mountain) that includes an epic waterfall because the ride in Jasper only included water falling from the sky.

What goes up (slowly) must come down (quickly). I’m not a climber, but that hasn’t stopped me from turning pedal over pedal up some of the most notable road climbs in the Rockies. My little hummingbird heart just a-goin’. And while I’m often the last one up a climb, once the gradient tips into the negative, my hummingbird turns into a falcon and I am a force to be reckoned with in the race to the bottom. I continue to challenge myself on the climbs so that I can feel truly alive on the descents. And it’s the allure of exhilarating descents in North Carolina that make the Land of Waterfalls so appealing. I’ll tolerate the ups, but I live for the downs!

Road or mountain, the Land of Waterfalls gets my hummingbird going just thinking about the ride possibilities. So many adventures await – adventures of a lifetime!


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