The Beauty Around Us

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Posts tagged ‘Pisgah National Forest’

Virginia and North Carolina Vacation: Day 7

Friday, August 26, was the third day of SEVROC.

We got up around 7:00 am and ate breakfast in our room.

After breakfast I sat outside our room, enjoying the crisp air of the morning. I also watched fog rolling over the mountains.

At 8:42 am a heavy fog was still rolling over the mountains.

At 9:00 am a few of our friends left A Holiday Motel to ride up The Rattler (NC 209) to Hot Springs.

They are off, with “Skid” in the lead.
Skid’s blog post will provide details and photographs of the ride.

At 9:30 am Bob and I left en route the Fred W Symmes Chapel. We traveled via Interstate or highway most of the way and arrived at 11:12 am.

The Fred W Symmes Chapel is located in Cleveland, South Carolina. The chapel is also known as “Pretty Place” because of its amazing view.

The Fred W Symmes Chapel
As I walked into the open-air sanctuary, I was filled with awe.
Such an incredible place to visit!
What a breathtaking view!

We left the chapel around 11:30 am and began the second part of our sightseeing journey. We visited several waterfalls, as well as a visitor center for the Pisgah National Forest.

Connestee Falls Park is located about 6 miles from Brevard NC, along U.S. Route 276. We took a very short stroll from the right rear of the parking lot to the viewing area for two waterfalls: Connestee Falls and Baston Creek Falls. There is a Connestee Falls that is a gated community. You need to drive past the gated community to Connestee Falls Park. There is a realtor’s office next to the park. I tell you this because EVERY SINGLE TIME we have visited Connestee Falls and Baston Creek Falls, we have turned into the gated community and were turned away!

This wheelchair accessible trail leads to an overlook of the Connestee and Batson Falls.
The viewing platform sits on top of Connestee Falls.
Panoramic view of Connestee Falls and Batson Falls
I zoomed in to capture this picture of Batson Falls.
This video shows the Connestee Falls, as it drops to the bottom of its hill and joins Batson Falls, as it drops to the bottom of its hill.

From Connestee Falls Park we drove to another waterfall. Located a short distance from Brevard along Route 276 is Looking Glass Falls. It had started to rain, as we approached Looking Glass Falls. As a result, we didn’t hike down the trail to lower viewing platforms. We viewed the falls from the top viewing platform only.

Looking Glass Falls is 60 feet tall.

From Looking Glass Falls we backtracked a short distance and visited the National Forest Visitor Center Pisgah Ranger Division.  It was pouring rain; glad we didn’t have to park far from the building! I obtained a National Park Service passport cancellation stamp for Pisgah National Forest and looked at the exhibits.

This is a replica of the entrance gate that once stood at the entrance to Pisgah National Forest.
This is the only bear that we saw, while on vacation.

The rain stopped, as we drove through Brevard.

Our next stop was at another waterfall.

Shortly before reaching Highlands is Lake Sequoyah Dam Falls. 

Sequoyah Falls flow over a man made dam. 

Our next stop was at Bridal Falls. At one time it was possible to drive under the falls. The road under the falls has been closed the past few times, when we visited.

There wasn’t much water falling at Bridal Falls.

By the way this was our first visit in the summer in this part of the United States. In the past we have visited in May. Waterfalls have significantly more water flow in May.

Our last sightseeing stop was at Dry Falls.

Bob took this picture of me,
as we hiked down the stairs to the base of Dry Falls.
Dry Falls is 75 feet tall.
Dry Falls earned its name because you
can take a trail to walk behind the falls
and not get wet (well, not too wet).
Bob took this picture of me, when I was behind the falls.
I kept as close to the rock wall, as possible,
without hitting my head.
I stayed mostly dry.

Well, I stayed mostly dry behind the falls. It started to rain again on our hike back up the stairs. We both got fairly wet!

At 3:16 pm we began our drive back to A Holiday Motel. Wouldn’t you know the sun came out a few minutes’ drive past Dry Falls?

We ate dinner at the Sagebrush Steakhouse in Waynesville and made it back to A Holiday Motel around 6:00 pm.

Tonight was the “hotel room crawl” at A Holiday Motel.  It had been a long day. We called it a night at 9:00 pm, without participating in the crawl.

Today’s Map

Chasing Waterfalls

We spent the week of May 14th on vacation in Virginia and North Carolina. I have been uploading blog posts about our vacation since May 29th. This blog post is about our fourth day of vacation.

We awakened shortly before 6:00 am on Wednesday, May 17. By 6:50 am we were showered and dressed for the day.  This is our first full day at A Holiday Motel in Maggie Valley, NC.

Our VROC friends, “Skid” and Sandy, stopped by our hotel room around 7:15 am, on their way to breakfast. The four of us ate breakfast at Pop’s Grits & Eggs, located on the hotel grounds.  We sat down at the only available table and placed our breakfast orders.  Bob ordered a Sausage and Cheese Omelet. I ordered a Western Omelet. Breakfast was good and very filling.

After breakfast, Bob and I went chasing waterfalls. It was 9:00 am, when we began our drive. We saw seven waterfalls.  We used the GPS to take us from one waterfall to the next.  The first waterfall that we visited was Soco Falls.

Soco Falls is located between the towns of Maggie Valley and Cherokee. From Maggie Valley, head south on Highway 19 to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Cross under the Parkway and continue downhill on Highway 19 towards Cherokee. From the Parkway, it’s 1.5 miles to an unmarked pullout on the left side of the road. This is the fourth year that we have gone in search of waterfalls in this area of North Carolina.  Each year we have missed the small parking area for this waterfall.  This year was no exception; however, we turned around this time and found Soco Falls.  There is no sign at the pullout, but you can hear the waterfalls from the parking area.  The trail to Soco Falls begins at the northern part of the parking area, where there is a break in the guard rail.  The first part of the trail resembled a goat path and was a little bit steep.  Within a few minutes, though, we reached a boardwalk and the viewing platform.

Soco Falls

Soco Falls is a double waterfall.   If you look closely at the photograph displayed below, a portion of the second waterfall can be seen on the bottom left side peeking out from behind the foliage.

Soco Falls
The taller of the two waterfalls is 120 feet tall.

U.S. Route 64 tightly twists and turns its way along the Cullasaja River Gorge, which is part of the Nantahala National Forest.   We stopped at three Cullasaja River Gorge waterfalls:

  • Cullasaja Falls
  • Quarry Falls
  • Dry Falls

Cullasaja Falls is located along a very dangerous stretch of Hwy 64. The 250′ waterfall is visible from the road, but there is only a small pull-off area.  Make sure that you pull completely off the road!   Tractor trailers use this section of road and they need both lanes to get around these curves.

Cullasaja Falls

Quarry Falls (also known as Upper Cullasaja Falls) is another roadside waterfall.  Quarry Falls is a small, but beautiful waterfall.

Quarry Falls is a 20-foot high, multi-tiered waterfall.

The 75-foot high Dry Falls earned its name because you can take a trail to walk behind the falls and not get wet (well, not too wet).

Dry Falls

Around 1:00 pm we ate a picnic lunch at Connestee Falls Park, located about 6 miles from Brevard along U.S. Route 276.

After lunch we took a very short stroll from the right rear of the parking lot to the viewing area for Baston Creek Falls.

The viewing platform sits on top of Connestee Falls.
The ledge that is visible in this photograph is a small part of Connestee Falls.
From the viewing area you look over at Batson Creek Falls.
Batson Creek Falls

Located a short distance from Brevard along Route 276 are Looking Glass Falls and Sliding Rock, both of which are located in the Pisgah National Forest.  Before arriving at Looking Glass Falls we avoided a car collision with a car that wandered onto our side of the road; we hit a squirrel; and we avoided hitting a dog that jumped out onto the road from truck bed in front of us. This all happened within a few minutes!

Looking Glass Falls is 60 feet tall.

Our next stop was at Sliding Rock. 

Sliding Rock is a 60′ natural rock slide with a 6-7 foot deep pool at the base.

Both Looking Glass Falls and Sliding Rock are located near the Blue Ridge Parkway.  Leaving Sliding Rock, we hopped onto the Blue Ridge Parkway (south) — the subject of my next blog post.

West Virginia and North Carolina Vacation – Day 7 of 9: More Waterfalls and Lunch

As I wrote in my previous vacation blog post, we spent the better part of 10 hours chasing waterfalls on Friday, May 15th.

We saw seven waterfalls before lunch.  I shared photographs and videos from Cullasaja Falls, Quarry Falls, Dry Falls and Bridal Veil Falls in my previous post.

The last three waterfalls that we saw before lunch were:

  • Silver Run Falls
  • Toxaway Falls
  • Batson Creek Falls

 

Silver Run Falls is located on North Carolina Route 107, approximately 4 miles south of Cashiers.

Silver Run Falls is a 25-foot high waterfall.

 

Located on U.S. Route 64 near Lake Toxaway is the 150-foot Toxaway Falls.  Many travelers drive across the top of Toxaway Falls without realizing it is there!  We crossed the bridge and parked in a pull-off area on the left side. Bob stayed in the car, while I crossed US 64 to see the falls on the south side.

Toxaway Falls

The last waterfall that we saw before lunch was located in Connestee Falls Park, about 6 miles from Brevard along U.S. Route 276.  A very short stroll to the viewing area begins at the right rear of the parking area.  From the viewing area you are actually at the top of Connestee Falls, which I couldn’t see, and are looking over at Batson Creek Falls.

Batson Creek Falls

If you look closely at this photograph, you may see what appears to be steps on the right of the falls, near the middle.  Through an Internet search I determined that these are, in fact, steps.  Residents of the private, gated Connestee Falls residential community can hike a trail that ends in this set of steps. From there, there is a view of Connestee Falls.  The trail is not open to the public.

 

From Connestee Falls Park, we drove into Brevard and found parking near the Transylvania County Courthouse.

Transylvania County Courthouse

Transylvania County Courthouse

We ate lunch (pizza) at Jaime’s Creole Brasserie.

We were seated on an outside verandah.

Our wood-fired pizza had a thin crust and was covered with marina sauce, cheeses, pepperoni and banana peppers. The pizza was very tasty. The host and waitress were very friendly and served us well.

From Brevard we drove a short distance along U.S. Route 276 to Looking Glass Falls, which is located in the Pisgah National Forest.

Looking Glass Falls

Looking Glass Falls is 60 feet tall.

In my next vacation blog post I will continue sharing details and photographs from our 7th day of vacation.

Nantahala National Forest and Pisgah National Forest, NC

The Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests are two of four national forests in the state of North Carolina. Nantahala National Forest, the largest of the four national forests, lies in the mountains and valleys of western North Carolina. The Pisgah National Forest lies in the southern Appalachian Mountains, including parts of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Many waterfalls can be found in both national forests.

Chambers on the Road

RV, other Travels and Home Life in Retirement

Unique places to visit

Day trips, hiking, biking, vacations

Strafari

Travel blog & Strasbourg city guide

AfterKC.com

Enjoying Life In New Ways

The Frog and PenguINN

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Bicycling the beauty around us

This is a bicycling journal.

The World according to Dina

Notes on Seeing, Reading & Writing, Living & Loving in The North

Skid and Sandy On The Road

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

vivacioushoopster

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

My Mommy's Place

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Viewing nature with Eileen

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Deep Thoughts

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Rambling On

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Talk and Chatter

Reviews, talk, and fun

Senior Moments

The random musings of a fairly active Tennessee retiree

Pics & Pieces

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

PHOTOJOURNAL OF CORKER2

TRYING TO DO THIS WITHOUT A DEGREE!

Pennsylvania Wildlife Photographer

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

MY QUALITY TIME

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Linda's Peaceful Place

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Life's Funny Like That

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

JOYFUL REFLECTIONS

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

I'll give you a piece of my mind

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Hospitality Lane

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Gretchen's Traveling

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

An English Girl Rambles from 2016 to ....

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog