U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > North Carolina > Western North Carolina
 [Register]
Western North Carolina The Mountain Region including Asheville
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 11-23-2012, 01:54 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,015 times
Reputation: 10

Advertisements

Hello, hoping some friendly locals could help my wife and I.

We are planning a trip to Asheville in late December, and this will be our first time stopping in the area. We'd love to explore the city itself and some areas nearby (within 50 miles or so). The plan is a 4 or 5 day trip. After much internet browsing, I've learned a ton, but still have a few things I'm not positive on. Please help if you get a chance . . .

1. Weather is always variable, but how likely is snow? We have a small car, with no chains on tires or all wheel drive. Is it likely we run into unsafe driving conditions?

2. We love to hike, but worry about a few things. First, will many trails/hikes be unusable due to normal winter conditions?

3. Also regarding hiking, will the typical gorgeous mountain views be a little less thrilling with the trees lacking leaves and being mostly bare? While I know this is a personal opinion type question, any perspective would be wonderful.

4. What other area towns would you suggest we visit? Waynesville, Maggie Valley, Flat Rock all have caught our eye. We don't need flashy stuff, just a nice stroll through an interesting new town.

Thanks!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 11-25-2012, 05:00 AM
 
4 posts, read 8,015 times
Reputation: 10
.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-25-2012, 07:07 AM
 
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
4,224 posts, read 8,038,716 times
Reputation: 5256
Quote:
Originally Posted by aces4brutus View Post
Hello, hoping some friendly locals could help my wife and I.

We are planning a trip to Asheville in late December, and this will be our first time stopping in the area. We'd love to explore the city itself and some areas nearby (within 50 miles or so). The plan is a 4 or 5 day trip. After much internet browsing, I've learned a ton, but still have a few things I'm not positive on. Please help if you get a chance . . .

1. Weather is always variable, but how likely is snow? We have a small car, with no chains on tires or all wheel drive. Is it likely we run into unsafe driving conditions?

None of us can predict the weather conditions in late Dec., in Asheville 'area'...barring an unusual storm, Asheville is not exactly 'wintry' in late Dec. Some of the surrounding areas with more elevation, are often 10-12 degs colder, and snow is possible. (We have already had a couple PIA snows at our elevation.) Most cars, with decent tires, will have no prob on main and most secondary roads. Some of the steeper roads in higher elevations, esp the north facing sections can be slippery and snow/frost/ice covered, but again it is dependent on storms, precipitation, temps, etc. There are weather tendencies, but my 11 yrs here have shown me much variance, esp at the higher elevations, with the more surbuban lower elevations less affected in any time of 'winter'. I think you will be fine with whatever you are driving.

2. We love to hike, but worry about a few things. First, will many trails/hikes be unusable due to normal winter conditions?

Lots of short to medium hourish to half day hikes; again, if one is not up at the 4500-5,000+ ft elevation, my guess is most will be available. And even the higher trail heads may be open. There are some good hikes from the BlueRidgeParkway, but it being open is very weather dependent. Some hike links:
Hiking in Western North Carolina - Hike WNC

Top 40 Hikes Asheville | NC Mountain Hiking Trails

3. Also regarding hiking, will the typical gorgeous mountain views be a little less thrilling with the trees lacking leaves and being mostly bare? While I know this is a personal opinion type question, any perspective would be wonderful.

I was up on the BRPkway riding my m'cycle on Thanksgiving morning: it was fabulous. Nearly all the trees are bare, the sky and 'looks' are very blue, and one can see the fuzzy ridges for a long way. I walk every morning up, around and back down our mtn, and I find this time of year to be the best: the woods floor is carpeted with leaves, one can see through the woods vs summer, the air is usually very clean, and views are spectacular, imo.

4. What other area towns would you suggest we visit? Waynesville, Maggie Valley, Flat Rock all have caught our eye. We don't need flashy stuff, just a nice stroll through an interesting new town.

I live in/above Waynesville, so I am not objective: very nice, thriving downtown with many galleries, shops, places to eat, joints, etc. MV is a strip with little walking and not my fave. I also like Hendersonville, Weaverville, Brevard, et al for a nice, interesting walkable 'downtown', H'ville being much larger. And, A'ville has lots of walkable, interesting areas. Just my picks, not doing a ranking...

Thanks!
The dearth of responses may be due to the plethora of similar question posts that come around on this JukeBox weekly...I think most responding posters would like to see a sticky with FABs and FAQs of info, things to do/see and 'how is it in western NC...' ;>)

Western NC is a wonderful place to live, visit, wander around, imo.
GL, mD

PS...can't get multiquote to work, on CD...;(

Last edited by motordavid; 11-25-2012 at 07:33 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-28-2012, 03:56 PM
 
863 posts, read 1,061,478 times
Reputation: 825
Quote:
Originally Posted by aces4brutus View Post
Hello, hoping some friendly locals could help my wife and I.

We are planning a trip to Asheville in late December, and this will be our first time stopping in the area. We'd love to explore the city itself and some areas nearby (within 50 miles or so). The plan is a 4 or 5 day trip. After much internet browsing, I've learned a ton, but still have a few things I'm not positive on. Please help if you get a chance . . .

1. Weather is always variable, but how likely is snow? We have a small car, with no chains on tires or all wheel drive. Is it likely we run into unsafe driving conditions?

2. We love to hike, but worry about a few things. First, will many trails/hikes be unusable due to normal winter conditions?

3. Also regarding hiking, will the typical gorgeous mountain views be a little less thrilling with the trees lacking leaves and being mostly bare? While I know this is a personal opinion type question, any perspective would be wonderful.

4. What other area towns would you suggest we visit? Waynesville, Maggie Valley, Flat Rock all have caught our eye. We don't need flashy stuff, just a nice stroll through an interesting new town.

Thanks!
In addition to Asheville, Waynesville, Flat Rock/Hendersonville (within shouting distance of each other) and Brevard have nice downtown areas with shopping/strolling. I'm partial to Asheville, because it's where I chose to live. I survived last winter in a two wheel drive sans chains or lugged tires, and I lived on Town Mountain Road (on Town Mountain overlooking downtown). The little snowfall we received last December wasn't a issue until the higher elevations above AVL (which is approx. 2,200'). Unfortunately, the Blue Ridge Parkway is closed in winter. And yes, the deciduous trees w/o leaves have their own, er, beauty. I prefer leaves, but winter does have it's unique beauty. Out Waynesville way, there's lots of hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains Natl Park. Between AVL and Hendersonville/Flat Rock, Chimney Rock State Park/Lake Lure would be a nice place to hike. If too snowy at the time of your visit, you could pay the tariff at the Biltmore Estate and walk through their massive grounds, then warm to a evening fire at the Grove Park Inn (lobby, with handy bar within a stones throw).

Brevard, as mentioned, has a nice downtown for strolling and is close to DuPont State Forest, which has lots of waterfalls and a variety of hiking trails. You didn't mention the severity of hikes you like. The few trails I've hiked at DuPont were easy to moderate. Scenes from the Hunger Games film were filmed at DuPont.

If you're foodies, no area within your 50 mile radius comes close to Asheville. Mountainxpress.com just published results of their annual readers poll of local restaurants. And having been to most of the restaurants, agree with most of the picks. If you have specific taste in restaurants, I'd be happy to give my two cents worth.

About fifteen minutes east of AVL is the town of Black Mountain. Just above (elevation) the town is Montreat. It's a pretty area with a small lake. Billy Graham lives in Montreat. I'm not certain, but there may be hiking there and if not, and you're still in the area, check out Lake Eden, which is between Black Mounain and Montreat. Lake Eden is beautiful.

Check out romanticasheville.com for more. Hope you have a nice visit.

Last edited by Asheville1; 11-28-2012 at 04:05 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-28-2012, 07:45 PM
 
Location: Blue Ridge Mtns of NC
5,661 posts, read 24,631,056 times
Reputation: 3806
Just to expand on Asheville 1's statement concerning the close proximity of Hendersonville and Flat Rock, I would also add the town of Laurel Park to that mix. All three are incorporated and it's hard to determine where one stops and another begins when driving around Hendersonville. They are that close. If you combine all three as one, the population is around 17K.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-28-2012, 10:51 PM
 
102 posts, read 217,561 times
Reputation: 274
Consider driving SE down 74A and through the town of Fairview, and then onward into Bat Cave, Chimney Rock, and Lake Lure. The drive is gorgeous, and now that tourist season is done, you won't have as heavy traffic/crowds to deal with.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-30-2012, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Western NC.
1,324 posts, read 2,030,978 times
Reputation: 1211
Parkway is not always closed in winter depends on weather. Often closes north bound at Weaverville exit but you can get off and head down Ox Creek Rd to Weaverville (cute town) and back to Asheville. Lots of people park when gates shut and walk the Parkway lovely views and no traffic. I love the winter views air is clearer and you can see ridges in the distance, bring binoculars, summer is so lush all you see is green. Bring layers weather can be very variable especially day to night temps or windy. But think you will enjoy the area lots to do.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-06-2012, 03:32 AM
 
863 posts, read 1,061,478 times
Reputation: 825
Default Link to WNC Hiking Clubs, Trails, Maps and Photos

Western North Carolina Hiking and Outdoors Clubs and Organizations
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-20-2012, 03:56 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,015 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks for all the good advice, we are heading out right after Christmas.

With the warmer weather so far this December, has the parkway been closed yet?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-22-2012, 10:46 PM
 
Location: Fairview
377 posts, read 431,064 times
Reputation: 671
You can keep up-to-date here:

Road Closures - Blue Ridge Parkway
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:



Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > North Carolina > Western North Carolina
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:44 PM.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top