If there's one specific activity that jumps out in my mind from my childhood--one that I absolutely enjoyed and would look for any opportunity that presented itself--it's climbing.

WINTER WEATHER LEADS TO THOUGHTS OF SPRINGTIME ACTIVITIES

I look outside my window and see all this snow and think about all those massive "snow mountains" created by plows in parking lots. Wesleyan Park Plaza was always good for one or two, although I think THIS snow might be too soft.

I also think back to trips out to New Mexico to visit family and remember those awesome picnics we used to have at City of Rocks, just outside of Silver City. Yes, that's exactly what it looks like from the road--like some setpiece that somehow DIDN'T make it in The Flintstones. Great memories.

And I remember climbing on the lumber stacks behind Tom Blue Furniture and running off when an employee caught us, but the less said about that the better.

CHAINED ROCK IN EASTERN KENTUCKY

But I also think about a missed opportunity in eastern Kentucky and one that I won't get back because my climbing days--for the most part--may be over. I only say that because I'm old enough now that I'm not sure I could navigate what I would likely need to navigate to get to the top of Chained Rock in Bell County. It's in Pineville, Kentucky and I HAVE seen it, but I didn't go up there. I did not, however, see the chain. But you can in this video.

And yes, there is a chain, otherwise, this beautiful attraction would just be called "Rock."

WHY IS IT CALLED 'CHAINED ROCK'?

Why is there a chain you ask? Well, for security. You see, back in the 1930s, according to KentuckyTourism.com, the children of Pineville were told that the large rock would not break free and come tumbling down the mountain as they slept. I'm not sure why it was necessary to scare the kids; I wasn't there. But that was the legend, and you could say it was based in truth because a chained WAS attached to the large rock in 1932 to secure its position.

Now it's a favorite getaway for hikers all over eastern Kentucky, eastern Tennessee, and western Virginia. And it's not even a bad hike--just three-tenths of a mile one way.

I love the outdoors and maybe I ought to just give Chained Rock another try.

How Many of These Kentucky Attractions Have You Visited?

Let's see how much you've traveled the Bluegrass State. Go through the list and see which attractions you've visited and which you still have on a "to-do" list. I need to get busy, too.

SEE INSIDE: Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary in the Smoky Mountains

Brushy Mountain was an operating prison for more than 100 years but has been a popular destination for tourists since its closure in 2009.

RANKED: Here are the most popular national parks

To determine the most popular national parks in the United States, Stacker compiled data from the National Park Service on the number of recreational visits each site had in 2020. Keep reading to discover the 50 most popular national parks in the United States, in reverse order from #50 to #1. And be sure to check with individuals parks before you visit to find out about ongoing, pandemic-related safety precautions at www.nps.gov/coronavirus.