Tuesday, October 27, 2015

October 22, 2015 - Heading Home via the Blue Ridge Parkway

Today was check out day from the campground for us.  We thought we'd just cruise the Parkway back and make a few stops along the way.  The shortest route to the BRP from the campground is to get back on FR464 and take it until it ends at Old Jonas Ridge Rd near the Parkway.  We both noticed that the color had really picked up along 464 in the day and a half since we were here last.  Below is a shot from one of the most colorful sections, but we said a lot of 'Wow's!' along the entire stretch of road.  Our plan was to restock supplies, let the week end crowds die down, and head back to Mortimer on the following Monday.

along FR464

There's a quaint little church - Long Ridge Baptist Church - right where  FR464 ends and the trees around it were gorgeous also.  We had to pull in for some shots.

Long Ridge Baptist Church

Once we got back up on the Parkway near Linville, the color along the road dulled quite a bit and didn't pick up again until we dropped in elevation.  We did pull in to the Chestoa View overlook - the color was nice, but nothing spectacular.

Chestoa View

The Crabtree Meadows area was really colorful, but we weren't feeling a hike to the waterfall.  Instead, we got off the Parkway on NC80 north and headed for FR472 which goes past the Black Mountain Campground.  That area was really colorful also, and we stopped several times to enjoy the scenery.  Once we got to the bridge over the right prong of the South Toe River, the sun was low enough to be off the waterfall just up creek from the bridge.  I have more on that area on my site here.

Right Prong South Toe River

The cascades above that were really nice also and we ended up hanging out in that area for about an hour or so.  About a mile farther up FR472, we connected back on to the Parkway and continued heading towards Asheville.  The last picture of the day is from an overlook before Mount Mitchell.  The color was nice, but more on the down side of peak.

view near Mount Mitchell entrance

That was true until we got closer to Asheville where we drove past several sections of brilliant color.  By this time however, the sun was low and we were driving into it which back lights the leaves and really makes the colors pop.  We made it back home late afternoon, unloaded the car, and began planning our next outing. 

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