Autumn in Western North Carolina

Fall in the Carolina mountains is a beautiful time to visit! I have been trying to make a trip for a few years now and finally made it. My family used to go regularly when I was younger, but since college it has been a challenge for me to make it back. I think I picked the perfect year to visit though. Due to a record breaking hot summer, the already long leaf season has been extended even further. Throughout the states, you can observe fall leaf season from late September through early November. We decided to make it out to the mountains before October ends to ensure we don't miss the season. Perk: the weather was perfect. Con: we weren't the only ones on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

We left Raleigh Friday night and spent the night in Greensboro with family. The next morning we hit the road for 2.5 hours until Blowing Rock where we stopped for coffee and sandwiches. If you have never been, Blowing Rock is a tiny, adorable mountain town that is also touristy and for some reason packed this weekend! For that reason, we didn't stick around too long. From there we took our time driving through Blue Rock Parkway, passing Grandfather mountain. Due to the crazy amount of people around the mountain we kept going and decided to stop where we got a good view of the mountain from a far.

From there are next goal was to find a good hiking spot. We discovered a somewhat hidden trail called Upper Creek Falls near Linville Falls. It was a steep hike down to the creek and back up, but completely worth it! We spent quite a while enjoying the views and peacefulness of the water and trees.

After that we were ready to find a camping spot. At this point it was almost five and we didn't have service so we had a hard time calling any near by campgrounds..oops. But eventually we got a hold of one with a vacant spot. yay! It was pretty packed but we had an end spot so it didn't feel like we were on top of anyone. The tent set up was so much easier than I remember as a child. Yes its probably been that long since I last camped. The tent literally just pops open! Oh, and we had an air mattress...complete luxury. We made a quick stop at a grocery store for some hotdogs and S'mores ingredients. Before we knew it we were cozied up next to a camp fire enjoying a classic campground dinner. What is it about fires that is so mesmerizing?

After a good night sleep, we hit the road for Asheville for breakfast. Found a great brunch place after some strolling around. We tried to go through the grounds at Biltmore Estate, but apparently you have to pay full price just to get near it. It was a bit too steep for us so we decided to go ahead and hit the road. I am glad we did because a 4 hour drive back home is pretty draining. We made it home in one piece though and had some great pictures from our short weekend in the mountains. Seriously guys, if you're near the Carolina mountains this fall..GO! You won't regret it :)

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