2014

French Broad River

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French Broad River

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 […]

2014

Swimming Hole on the Laurel River

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Laurel River Swimming Hole

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 […]

2014

Biltmore Bass Pond

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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 […]

2014

Smoky Mountain Rapids

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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.

2014

Max Patch Mountain

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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 […]

2014

Blue Ridge Parkway

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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, […]

2014

Little Round Top

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Beginning on July 2, 1863, the Battle of Little Round Top at Gettysburg was a key battle in the Civil War. Confederate troops began an attack to drive northeast up the Emmitsburg Road in the direction of Cemetery Hill, rolling up the Union left flank that morning. Little Round Top was undefended by Union troops at this point. General Sickles, defying direct orders, moved his corps a few hundred yards west to the Emmitsburg Road […]