Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Asheville, North Carolina- October 2014

October 2014- I was finally getting a chance to take a trip down to North Carolina and visit some best friends and see a place I have wanted to see for many years... the mountains in Asheville.

The trip was amazing. More amazing than I was expecting. My images are pretty much in order from the beginning of my trip to the end. (With some minor switches here and there.) I arrived in Asheville late Wednesday night. I arose early the next morning to be able to watch the sun rise on the mountains via the Blue Ridge Parkway. Boy, am I glad I did that...

These first set of images are from 7 a.m. on the Blue Ridge. It was freaking cold and being from Wisconsin, I know cold weather. That was a bummer, but it kept me wide awake, that is for sure. There was one point on a look out point that I was so excited that I was running up and down the road to get pictures. Then I laughed at myself because of how ridiculous I probably looked to the other people who were brave enough to venture out that early. The scenery and colors took my breath away. I was just so overwhelmed by the feeling of being in the thick of the wild like that. The mountains went on forever. At Craggy Gardens I was so high up, I was looking down over the clouded land. I was above the clouds!! It was spectacular.

I also checked out downtown Asheville, and the classic hotel Grove Park Inn with a couple I met while I was there. I am thankful to have met some wonderful people while I was on this solo trip. They took me to the Grove Park Inn and I am so thankful for that. This place was gorgeous. I wasn't able to take but one picture while I was there for the very short amount of time, but definitely something to check out next time I go.

Another stop on my trip was Dry Falls. It is this crazy awesome waterfall that you walk behind! Pictures are below, with more explanation and such. Then I drove 7 hours to the coast to my best friends, Sam and Devin. I spent time with them and got to revisit my old town of Wilmington. I got  the chance to go to Airlie Gardens which was such an interesting place. They have a chapel made out of glass bottles! (Pictures of that are also below) What a beautiful garden it is. Enough rambling from me though, just look at the pictures!

I want to go back in spring and experience the majesty of these healing mountains once again.


First scenic spot on the North East portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Blue Ridge Parkway and face of a mountain wall.



  These three images were the first major curve I came to on the Blue Ridge Parkway, and it was all while the sun was hitting the curve at the same time. Bright pure morning sunlight on the East.   

First tunnel I went through!!

View from Craggy Gardens early morning.

Miles high trash can.

So, I stopped here and walked up a little path. As I was looking into the shadows of the mountains I saw Glassmine Falls!! Except, it was teeny tiny from this spot. I could barely see it with the darkness and bright sun. It made me laugh, but I was excited because it was the first waterfall of my trip!

I was above the clouds!!!

I love this tunnel.

These are a couple of pictures of the Linn Cove Viaduct, which is a portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway that extends out and over the wild mountain terrain. There is a visitor center and a parking lot with a few trails that take you either below the Viaduct, like the pictures show, or there is a trail that takes you above it. I just took the short trail below it to see the grandeur of this architectural wonder. They build the road like this so it would blend in with the natural surroundings and not to disturb the wilderness. You could hear when cars would move on this portion of the parkway, it made a clunk sound like a car going over a bascule bridge.

Another view from Craggy Gardens.

Far view of a tunnel near Craggy Gardens.

Far view of the Linn Cove Viaduct.

River Arts District

I made a short stop at the River Arts District in Asheville. I really loved the idea and concept of the studios being very open to the outside. Most of them, if not all, had huge garage doors that were open to the outside. People just walk in and wind their way through the different studios housed in these old factory buildings. I wouldn't mind working there, that is for sure!
Studio spaces in the River Arts District.

Had to take a picture of this bowling ball in a stone wall, only because it is a Miller High Life ball!! Wisconsin!!

If you are not familiar with the Before I die... art installations please look it up. I was really excited to see one in person. Many things on there that I totally relate to.

Grove Park Inn. This was my only picture I was able to take while there. Such a masterful piece of architecture. It was very lavish and I felt way out of place. But the veranda in back is something to definitely check out! Not to mention their subterranean spa!

Dry Falls

Yes! You actually do walk behind the waterfall!! It was spectacular!

This was a weird little cave along the walkway behind the waterfall inside the rocky cliff.

This is known at Bridal Veil Falls. It is right off another scenic parkway and you can drive right behind it!! It was pretty little, but still really awesome to do.

Here you can see where it is right off the road.

These are images from Airlie Gardens in Wilmington. It is really a beautiful space.

Great light makes things look like a fantasy.

Bottle chapel! A very unique space. The colors were so bold and the layout of the bottles was done very well. This was the thing I was most excited to see in Wilmington.

Me on a giant spider. Thank goodness it wasn't a real spider.

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