Tuesday, October 11, 2011

2011 Fall Foliage Report, NC Mountains: Week 3


Getting gorgeous here! Oh, mountain autumn, how we love you so. We're being treated to a brilliant fall this year thanks to Mother Nature. Sourwoods and dogwoods are in full color mode. And it seems like some trees in our neck of the woods are changing earlier than the past three years, including hickory, beeches and sassafras (one of Brigette's favorites):


Others, like some of the maple trees, are just getting their fall color engines revved up.


Oaks and maples are sure to give us lots of color this year later in the month. We can't wait!

The peaks above Black Mountain and Montreat (10-15 minutes from the Inn on Mill Creek) at the 3,500-5,000-foot elevation range are getting quite colorful, and so this week, we recommend a nice stroll around Lake Tomahawk in Black Mountain or Lake Susan in Montreat, where you can view the mountains reflected in the water and just sit for a while and enjoy the surroundings. Here's Lake Tomahawk this week:

 

If you want to get out and do some hiking, two trails to see color this week are Lookout Mountain in Montreat, which takes you up a half-mile trail to a fantastic overlook with views of the Black Mountains (we'll call them the "Golden Reddish Orange" Mountains this month!), and the Craggy Pinnacle Trail along the Blue Ridge Parkway. The trailhead for Lookout Mountain is about 15 minutes from the Inn, while the trailhead parking lot for Craggy Pinnacle is about 40 minutes' drive (mostly along the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway).

Stop by the blog next week when we'll be closer to peak color at our elevation as the color washes down the mountains.
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