This past weekend we went to see the fall change of color in the Blue Ridge Mountains near Asheville, North Carolina. Asheville and the Blue Ridge Mountains are a five hour trip from our home. It is far enough away that won't go there and back for a day-trip but close enough that we feel comfortable going there for a two or three day weekend.
The Asheville area is one of the top art destinations in the USA, which is good motivation enough for either of us to visit, but add to that the beauty of the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains, and we are positively addicted to the area.
One Sunday morning we woke up to the Weather Channel showing a picture of the Blue Ridge Mountains in full Fall Color. That did it... Within ten minutes we had grabbed our leather jackets, an extra set of clothing, cameras, and whatever snacks we could stuff in a cooler, and we were off. There are some signs of Fall here in the Low Country but nothing like the show that our Southern mountains put on. Shortly after we crossed the North Carolina and reached the foothills we began to see color on all sides of us.
Above and below US Highway 26 Northbound as we entered North Carolina, and the view from our hotel in the Biltmore Estates the next morning.
All along the road were spectacular burst of color.
We drove as far as Craggy Peak and took a short hike to the top of the mountain. The entire top of the mountain is covered in Rhododendron and Flowering Ashe.
Below: A tunnel has been cut through the Rhododendron for the trail to the peak.
Can you imagine how beautiful this hike must be when the Rhododendrons are in bloom? I can’t wait to see this area in spring
The view from the top was wonderful. You can see why the mountains are called the Blue Ridges. What I hadn’t expected was all the contrasting bright red of the Ashe Tree berries. No wonder they made this area a National Park and the Blue Ridge Highway a National Scenic Road.