Some people mistakenly make the connection that quiet living equals a lack of adventure. That could not be further from the truth. While we certainly have an appreciation for the slow, steady streams that slowly trickle by, we are equally in awe of the power behind the roaring rapids.
Today we thought we would share a bit about the roaring rapid side of things here in the WNC mountains. This abridged guide will highlight four popular local adventure sports: mountain biking, climbing, whitewater rafting, and hiking.
The Western North Carolina mountains are a mountain biker’s paradise. We’ve got it all – a variety of degrees of difficulty, incredible views and a whole community of mountain bike enthusiasts to join you in your adventures. Some of the most popular trails include:
- Pisgah National Forest: Easy-to-access trailheads from a variety of locations, more than 300 trails, and they offer road cycling trails as well!
- Bailey Mountain Bike Park: This option is essentially the mountain biking version of downhill snow skiing. Bikers ride a shuttle to the top of the mountain and then get to enjoy an expertly crafted, high-octane trail ride down. While they are overall much more suited for the advanced mountain biker, they also offer mountain guides and coaching for a fee.
- Lake James State Park: Fantastic option for beginner mountain bike enthusiasts. Well-groomed trails and an opportunity to take a splash in the lake after!
Be sure to call ahead to check on recent closures due to COVID-19 or weather conditions before you head out for a day of riding. For more information, check out our favorite resource for all the best tips, tricks and trail head location details here!
One of the things we enjoy most about climbing is how cerebral it is – climbers often report just as much of a mental rush as physical. That, combined with the solitude of the climb and you could almost call it an act of meditation. Two of the most popular WNC Mountain destinations include:
- Linville Gorge Wilderness: With over 300 well-researched climbing routes and a varying degree of difficulty, this is a North Carolina favorite. Also, since it’s located within the Pisgah National Forest, it’s the perfect opportunity to take in some fishing, backpacking or hiking as well.
- Rumbling Bald: This location is a top pick by locals and visitors because of its world-class bouldering (almost 900 bouldering lines) and fantastic southern exposure. Arrive early to this one because parking fills up fast.
As with any adventure sport, be sure to bring along your protective gear. Also, some of these climbing locations are quite remote so rescue teams would have a hard time getting to you. Climb with care.
Did you know that Asheville, North Carolina is considered to be in the top 10 states for creeking? That means this is a “must” on your WNC Mountain bucket list. If making a big splash is your passion, be sure to check out these hot spots:
- Nantahala River
- Chattooga River
- Watauga River
- French Broad River
If you are a fan of a slightly slower splash, we also have plenty of tubing options that move at more of a “lazy river” pace.
Although, at first glance, a person might not consider hiking an adventure sport, it certainly is here in the WNC mountains. There is wildlife to be found (or avoided), steep inclines, and a wide variety of terrain, just to name a few of the challenges.
Green Mountain Farm has plenty of hiking trails in its remote living setting which we highly recommend. We also highly recommend any one of the many national and state parks we have within 2 hours of our community. Some of our hiking favorites include:
- Pisgah National Forest (check out Looking Glass Rock)
- Nantahala National Forest
- Andrews Bald
- Alum Cave Trail (Be sure to read up on its fantastic history before you hit the trail!)
Whether we’re outdoor adventuring or enjoying a peaceful morning of backyard bird watching, life here in Green Mountain Farm makes every day feel like a vacation. We can’t think of anywhere else that we feel as connected with nature and in touch with ourselves. Don’t just take our word for it – come visit! We’d love to show you around.