October 26, 2012

Fall Colors in North Carolina

This time last week, we were winding down our little jaunt over to Pisgah National Forest and the Blue Ridge Parkway, south of Asheville. Our trip was well timed and offered us a view of the rolling, soft Appalachian Mountains dressed in their autumn finery. The season is winding down quickly now, and fall colors are already past their peak in our valley area. But what a beautiful display it was this year! 

Here are a few images that celebrate the glory of autumn. I’ll feature a few more later in my Wordless Wednesday posts and also for the November 10th photo challenge. 

The foliage display along with mountains, shone like a patchwork quilt, bordered by jagged strips of blue shadows in the distance. A trace of a town can be seen nestled in a distant valley. 

The dramatic sky also begged for attention in this southeastern view from the Parkway. Late afternoon light enriched hillside creases and provided a backlight for the foliage in the foreground. 

It was the first time that I got to see Looking Glass Rock, and it impressively dominated the landscape. It is a pluton monolith in the Appalachian range, rising up almost 4000 feet in height from the valley floor. Its granite face gleamed in the sunlight, hinting at the origin of its name. They say that it shines like a mirror in the winter when ice freezes along its rocky face. In my younger days, I might have tried a hike to the top of the summit. But I was quite content to admire it from afar. 

We traveled over to Asheville one day to visit the Southern Highland Craft Guild fair. Afterwards, we meandered along the Parkway, stopping to enjoy the view of the French Broad River and bid goodbye to the rainclouds as they ventured eastward. A wide-angle camera setting captured the expanse. I would hazard a guess that the tiny sliver of grey peeking up in the distance is Mount Mitchell, the highest peak in the eastern United States. 

There are many waterfalls in the Brevard area to enjoy. The vast majority of them are difficult to find and access. But the handsome Looking Glass Falls is conveniently located along the road and there is ample room for visitors to park. 

There were a few lookouts on the western side of the Parkway, and this one provided a lovely vista. Some bare trees joined in on the variety of textures..

Now that the leaves are quickly tumbling to the ground, I hope that you don't wear yourself out with raking duties in your yard!


  1. these colorful layers are SO beautiful!

    we never have to rake leaves, here. the wind takes care of them for us.

  2. Layer upon layer of color like an autumn rainbow. Simply gorgeous place. The rock must be impressive in winter; it's impressive now.

  3. Breathtaking! Spectacular! As always, I LOVE your photos - it's almost as good as being there!

  4. Wow---I recognize all of the areas where you took your pictures --but haven't ever seen them with this kind of Fall Color... WOW--you were there at the perfect time for sure... Gorgeous!!!!!


  5. Wow! What a gorgeous place! Made even more so by your beautiful pictures! Years ago on our way to Myrtle Beach we spent the night in Ashville. I loved it and the air smelled like pine!! So awesome!

  6. Uhh! I need my Appalachain fix.
    This is a wonderful reminder of the beauty there.
    In that last picture, in the foreground, the bare trees look like pines, could they be from an old burn?

  7. It's been wonderful to be here for the month of October! The color has been beautiful all month..either in the mountains or here in the foothills. You took wonderful photos as always! These would be nice to print out or make into cards! Enjoy your weekend! It was 77 today...maybe our last warm day!

  8. You certainly timed your trip right for gorgeous photos! Our trees haven't peeked yet. We passed through the area late one spring and your pictures tell me we need to make a fall trip to explore more in the area.

    P.S. Stay warm this weekend!

  9. Gorgeous fall colors. That first one really does look like a patchwork quilt.

  10. As always, such beautiful photos! North Carolina sure has gorgeous fall colors! We still have some color, but with the cold/wind/rainy weather, that will be a memory before too long. It's been a lovely autumn though.

  11. Beautiful Autumn photos. So scenic, makes me wish I were there!

  12. wonderful photos..wonderful fall colors,
    as I said to someone else, it makes me homesick for the US fall...without the hurricanes.


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