DSC03331DSC03339DSC03342When Jed and I moved to Richmond five years ago, we started an annual tradition of picking our own apples at Carter’s Mountain Orchard.  We usually target one of the first weekends in October in order to get the best selection and this past Saturday was the chosen day.  We awoke to muggy weather with a forecast of morning showers so we waited until about 11AM before starting our journey down to Charlottesville.  We made good time and headed straight into town to pick up lunch at one of our favorite spots, Bodo’s Bagels.  These are truly the best bagels that we have found south of the Mason- Dixon line.  My husband is especially crazy about Bodo’s and never misses an opportunity to dine there.  We got our tasty bagel sandwiches to go and headed off to the park located at the base of Carter’s Mountain.  After enjoying our picnic, we took our annual hike up the nature trail to Monticello.  Every year, I comment on how I would like to come back to tour Monticello but alas all we ever visit is their lovely facilities before walking back down the path to our car.

Once the exercise portion of our day was complete, it was time to eat . . . I mean pick the apples.  On the steep drive up Carter’s Mountain we were given a map of the orchard.  Upon reaching the top, we parked and took a moment to figure out the lay of the land before heading out to pick to our hearts’ content.  We traipsed all over the orchard sampling quite a variety of apples.  We packed our bags full of granny smith, braeburn, fuji, golden delicious, winesap and stayman.  At the end of the day, our bags weighed a total of 22 pounds. At only a $1.09 per pound this was quite a bargain.  While this was a significant haul, it was not a record.  In previous years, the Hurts have been known to bring home over 30 pounds of apples.

But the best part of the adventure was yet to come!  Finally, the anticipation was over.  It was time to settle down on the deck to take in the scenic view and to savor apple cider donuts, still warm and soft from the fryer.  I am already dreaming about tasting these delicious confections again next October.