One of the most famous and influential architects of the 20th century, Frank Lloyd Wright ushered in the American organic architecture movement which sought to promote harmony between man and nature in design. Wright benefited from good timing as Chicago in the 1880’s was a city of rebirth. Recovering from the Great Fire of 1871, Chicago in the 1880’s was a booming, vibrant town. Wright landed a prestigious apprenticeship with Louis Sullivan, inventor of the skyscraper. […]
The French Broad River finds it’s headwaters near the village of Rosman, North Carolina in Transylvania County. It meanders 213 through the Appalachians, past Asheville and Hot Springs until it ultimately merges with the Holston River near Knoxville to form the Tennessee River. One of two broad rivers in North Carolina, it served as an important passage for settlers in country to bring their livestock to coastal towns and ports. Hot Springs itself began as […]
The Laurel River is located in the Pisgah National Forest just outside the town of Hot Springs, NC. The river winds down from the mountains, curving along the way and interrupted by period rapids, until it’s junction with the French Broad River. Along the banks of the river once existed an old timber railroad. The tracks have long since been removed and are now replaced by a 4 mile long hiking trail. At approximately the […]
The great landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted designed the gardens of the Biltmore Estate between 1889 and 1895, prior to earning acclaim for his work on New York City’s Central Park. The Bass Pond was the continuation of the English garden which began closer to the mansion and near the formal French gardens. The Bass pond did not occur naturally. In fact, it took careful engineering by Olmstead to ensure the pond remained clear of silt […]
The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad line runs next to the Tuckasegee River in North Carolina, in the shadow of the Smoky Mountains. Around 15 miles up the line the train stops to allow riders an opportunity to explore. The area features a class 5 rapids with a kayak course and launching pads for kayaks and whitewater rafting.
Near the town of Hot Springs, NC is Max Patch Mountain. At 4,616′ in elevation it isn’t the highest mountain in the Appalachians, but it is higher than most of the surrounding range. A winding dirt and gravel road with frequent washboards leads most of the way up Max Patch Mountain, with the final few hundred feet in elevation beginning from a lot. This is a popular destination, and when we attended there were numerous […]
Southern Virginia and northern North Carolina in the Blue Ridge mountains is a mixture of hardwood forests and dotted with carved out pastures. Through this runs the Blue Ridge Parkway. This is quite possibly the most beautiful stretch of road to be found anywhere. Log cabin barns are still actively used to store tools and implements. When Verizon says they cover 97% of where people live…this is the other 3%. Split rail fences still dot the scenery, […]