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Trailheads Bend Time & Save The Universe, Feast At DBA Barbecue.

Updated: Mar 4

Earth is a funny planet. In outer space, a traffic cop has a radar gun on our blue marble orbiting the sun in 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes, and 46 seconds. Although the speed limit is 365 days, the space police lets it slide because the alien pities our antiquated technology and sophomoric attempts exploring space.

But those extra almost six hours a year must be accounted for in order to keep the celestial books balanced. So, big-brained humans came up with the idea of tacking on an extra day every four years to keep the laws of physics in check.


The concept is called Leap Year, and it’s the Milky Way’s garbage time. Many believe Leap Year is a Hallmark holiday––like birthdays, Christmas, and Groundhog Day. If you're born on this day, it messes with your age. Is it in regular years or leap years? Grab a pencil and paper and show all your work.


People added the extra Leap Year day in February since it got short-changed with only 28 days (and February’s been complaining ever since). This February 29th fell on Trailheads’ hiking Thursday, and only Guy, Roy, and Patrick rallied to the cause of making the time/space continuum whole again. Brad and George were working, and Steve was visiting a dear friend. Sometimes we wonder about their commitment.


The three True Trailheads and reliable Fio assembled in the parking lot of Blueway Trail at the Blue Heron Nature Preserve. It’s a pretty hike in Atlanta, just off Roswell Road.

We walked the elevated boarded section through the underbrush to the sandy areas rising on the banks of Nancy Creek. The creek flowed nicely and will flood in heavy rainfalls. Be advised that if you’re hiking with an umbrella, you may also need a boat.

We talked about a smorgasbord of subjects, starting with Mohs surgery, where dermatologists make their big money grab tending to our pasty skin prone to cancers. Several of us have the scars to prove its medical profitability. On his last visit to the dermatologist, Roy's doctor walked in and said, "Ahhhh, Celtic skin! My favorite!"


Talk then turned to entertainment. Roy mentioned Patrick might like “Constellation” on Apple TV+ since he knows Patrick consumes media like black holes consume galaxies.

One of the co-stars is Jonathan Banks, who played hitman/fixer Mike Ehrmantraut in “Breaking Bad” and “Better Call Saul.” Roy didn't know him there but remembered Banks when he had hair in “Beverly Hills Cop.” Roy had hair then, too.


Patrick has started watching “Shogun” on Hulu/FX and is loving it. He never read the massive James Clavell book, sold by the pound, or the 1980 miniseries starring Richard Chamberlain.

Patrick says he’s sick and tired of being in the dark when people start talking about feudal Japan in the year 1600, and he’s hoping watching Shogun will shed some light on the subject.


Guy likes watching “All Creatures Great And Small” on PBS, which is about a countryside veterinary practice in the 1930s to 1940s in Yorkshire, England. Fio is not a fan of the show.

The poor dog fears Guy will fall in love with a snooty English dog or perhaps a sexy barnyard animal and boot Fio to the curb. Plus, she's not too fond of the level of care at that time. Bad Guy, bad boy!!!


Blueway Trail has two sections, and to get from the first trail to the other requires a walk down busy Roswell Road as vehicles speed past. One false step, and we’d be squashed like bugs. We hurried along cautiously to the second trail.

As with all the in-town hikes, we are amazed that these islands of natural land have been preserved and exist right in the middle of the city. This one features the creek, bridges, a sandy beach, small waterfalls, boardwalks, teaching areas, and bat boxes. Bats are our friends and help keep the mosquitoes down. And Batman keeps evil maniacs in check.


This trail features the Nature Center, where they do important things, like raise rare frogs. A stepped stone stairway leads to a path where you can enjoy terrific views of the pretty waterfalls. We love the sound of rushing water.

As we walked the path, we could see the beautiful homes nearby. In the summer, these residents have visual protection from the peering eyeballs of riffraff like us, but in the winter with the trees bare, we can gawk and wonder what the home interiors look like.

We’re nosy that way. The homeowners did constantly assault us with the roar of leaf blowers. Take that, peeping Trailheads!


We finished our short, intown hike to enjoy an early lunch with Brad and Steve. Although they were not on the path to truth, they’d join us on the path to barbecue at DBA Barbecue on Roswell Road. We had been here once before and had ordered a colossal sampler platter that we destroyed. This time, we vowed to order like regular eaters and not scavengers. 


A sign on the door said there were FREE boiled peanuts if we were wearing our Little League uniform or Braves’ swag––but there was no mention of Trailheads gear. No fair! Please don’t let that stop you from buying some Trailheads’ gear here.

All profits benefit Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy to help support the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area. We hope they will add our outfits to this list for free boiled peanuts.


We went inside the restaurant, ordered, and got a table outside in the sun so our pasty skins could be roasted for our dermatologists’ future profits. Roy slathers on about a half-gallon of sunblock each day to help protect his pale acreage. But the sun is powerful and always finds the spot he missed. 


A lovely woman brought Fio a bowl of water. Fio was hoping for a cold Sweetwater 420, but she drank her water and thanked the young lady with a wink and a cock of the head. That's Doodle for "Thank you so very much. You're far too kind."


Dependable Steve went for his traditional pulled pork sandwich, but he felt exotic and kicked it up a notch with the Spicy Carolina Chopped Pork. Roy also had that Sammie and said it was “excellent.” They both liked that the buns were toasted to stand up to the moist meat and sauce. Roy said that on a 1-10 spiciness scale, it was a 3.


Steve thought it was spicier than that (he gave it a 5), so he topped his sandwich with some slaw to cool it down. Roy liked the meat so much that he ordered more of it for dinner. Thinking a meal ahead is brilliant.


Brad had the two-meat platter with pulled pork and beef brisket and raved about both. The flavors of both meats were good, with a nice smoky kiss. Brad began making out with his fork in public––embarrassing us.


Guy opted for the barbecue St. Louis-style spareribs and brisket two-meat platter. He said the ribs were “finger-lickin’ good,” and the ghost of Col. Harlan Sanders instantly appeared and slapped him with a multi-million-dollar lawsuit. We think lawsuits are one of the Colonel’s secret ingredients. Guy immediately ceased and desisted.


DBA offers three sauces, and they are all excellent. Decide what you like, give a generous squirt, and enjoy. You can’t go wrong unless you accidentally hit your pants with sauce.


Patrick was seduced by the smoked wings and ordered a dozen to share with his friends. While the wings were delicious, the smoke flavor was very light. The barbecue sauce merged with Roy's beard, making him look twenty years younger. Let’s enter the sides show. 

Our slaw expert Roy said DBA’s coleslaw is crunchy, creamy, and tasty. He got a pint of that to go, too.


Steve, Brad, and Patrick were head-over-heels in love with their Brunswick Stews. This stuff packs a wallop of flavor in every spoonful. It’s chock full of smoked meat, corn, and tomatoes in a tangy sauce that puts tastebuds on notice: “I will not be ignored!” Grab a cup or bowl of the Brunswick Stew and prepare to be blown away.


Brad, Guy, and Roy loved their collard greens and said they were “terrific.” The greens are peppered with meats. Roy called this side “the meaty vegetable.”

Finally, the sweet corn muffins are delicious. They are soft pillows of sweetness, sponges for sauce, or a final resting place for soft butter. They give you two tubs of butter because they know you'll want more,


We enjoyed DBA Barbecue and our extra day this Leap Year. Finding truth and barbecue makes any day special.


Remember, you have less than four years to get your Hallmark Happy Leap Year cards, so you’d better get shopping!




Rating: Four Ribs*

DBA Barbecue

4441 Roswell Road NE

Atlanta, GA 30342

(404) 975-3516


*About Our Barbecue Rating System

Trailheads do not claim to be food experts, epicureans, or sophisticated palettes. We are hungry hikers who attack a selected barbecue venue and ravage our way through whatever smoked fare and fixings they're dishing. Our reviews feature what we believe are the highlights of the menu we sampled. So our intent is not to trash talk the saintly folks who tend to smoldering smokers on hot, humid summer days. They are sacrificing themselves in the noble art of smoking meats and feeding the drooling masses. Many are independent entrepreneurs who are the backbone of this humming American economy. Now that you know our standards, you may wonder why every barbecue place gets a four ribs rating. The answer is easy: our group has acclaimed designers, and they think the ribs graphic looks cool. Who are we to argue? Enjoy.

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