Are you ready to come to Asheville for those sunny fall days, that crisp air, and the beautiful color? This fall is predicted to be one of the prettiest we have seen in years! Along with the leaves come popular events in and around Asheville. See the menu link, “Current Events”, and scroll down to the bottom of the page to find links for “Things to Do” and “Socializing.”
According to RomanticAsheville.com these are the specific 2017 peak color dates;
- October 3-12: Highest elevations north of Asheville (above 5,000 feet) show the most color, especially in the Mount Mitchell, Craggy Gardens, Grandfather Mountain, Beech Mountain, Rough Ridge, Waterrock Knob and Graveyard Fields areas.
- October 10-20: Color will increase in elevations greater than 4,000 feet, including the areas near Mount Pisgah, Black Balsam and Devil’s Courthouse southwest of Asheville on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It will also be peak color in the Cashiers area, including Whiteside Mountain with the Shadow of the Bear and plenty of waterfalls to enjoy, and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
- October 18-25: Many of the surrounding mountains around Asheville show plenty of color, especially in the 3,000-4,000 foot elevation range. Take the Parkway north or south from Asheville or drive the Forest Heritage Scenic Byway. A great hike in Pisgah National Forest would be Looking Glass Rockor Cradle of Forestry. North of Asheville, head to Banner Elk and Linville Gorge, with hikes to the top of Table Rock and Hawksbill Mountain. West of Asheville, Bryson City and Fontana Lake target=”_blank” areas will peak.
- October 22-30: The city of Asheville (2,000 feet elevation) shows the brightest colors, including Biltmore Estate, along with areas around Sylva and Saluda. This is the perfect time for a waterfall hike in DuPont State Forest or a leisurely walk at the NC Arboretum.
- October 27-November 5: The color show fills the Hickory Nut Gorge at Chimney Rock (elevation of 1,300 feet). Take a boat tour on Lake Lure. Also explore Lake James and South Mountains State Parks.
- November 1-8: The foothills around Rutherfordton and the Tryon Foothills Wine Country will conclude the color show.
Unfortunately, along with fall color comes the heaviest season of traffic in Asheville. Is there a way to avoid gridlock? Are there better routes than others in and around Western North Carolina? The answer to these questions is yes and no. Obviously if you try to come to the city on Friday afternoon/evening traffic will be heavy regardless of which route you take. If you are flexible on dates/times try Thursday before noon or early Saturday morning. If not, please see the map below for suggestions on how to avoid I26 and I240 gridlock:
Red means avoid! Green means better!
Enjoy your stay and as always…buy local and support the street musicians!