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Fall Leaf Guide for Asheville and Surrounding Areas in 2021

Collage of Fall images: red leaves, road in the fall, lake in the fall


Pumpkin latte in hand? Scarves out of storage? How about that cozy sweater you’ve been dying to pull out? Wondering what your next step is?


It’s that time of year again--the time visitors, tourists, and newcomers fall in love with the area we call home. So grab that latte from your favorite barista. If we think alike, we’ll spot you at Dripolator in Black Mountain. Take a piping hot sip of your favorite time of year and pause-these are the moments that we drink in this Mountain Way of Life. This area around these Blue Ridge Mountains boasts some of the most biodiverse in the world! And mother nature sure knows how to show it all off.


Where do you go to celebrate leaf season and the more than 120 species of trees in our area? As locals, we celebrate this time right alongside tourists and newcomers alike. It’s one of the many reasons we cherish this piece of heaven.  If you are new to the area or visiting and don’t quite know where to start, or you just feel the itch to switch it up a bit, we’ve got you covered.


Mother Nature presents her Autumn leaves and their brilliant changing beauty to us at different stages. If you blink and miss the spot you had scheduled on your weekend itinerary, don’t fret! There will be more opportunities to get your peep on.


According to Appalachian State’s North Carolina Fall Color Map,

leaf changes at or above 5000 feet are set for

prime peeping right now!


Pathway at Graveyard Fields with Fall colors

Try out the Blue Ridge Parkway’s Milepost 367.7--Craggy Gardens as one of your first stops. This week, you should start seeing colorful changes at Craggy and these higher elevations: Mt. Mitchell at Milepost 355.4 and Graveyard Fields at 418.8 (South of Asheville). These are some of the most popular destinations this time of year, so plan accordingly. Some of the most scenic with a little legwork include Sam Knob and Black Balsam.




Mid October, these brilliant colors will begin to spread their way to the middle elevations. You can keep moving along the Blue Ridge Parkway to Mount Pisgah or visit Max Patch from the Appalachian Trail.


Path at Black Balsam in the Fall


If you want to wait for the leaves to come to you, you can see these beautiful blankets of red, gold, and green in the areas closer to Asheville and the lower elevations in popular tourist destinations like the Biltmore Estate, North Carolina Arboretum, and Asheville Botanical Gardens


Or just take a stroll through your favorite small town...the views will never disappoint! Black Mountain, our favorite little town and where we call home, really begins to show colors around this time. Come to our front porch and sit a spell. We’d love to enjoy the Autumn leaves with you!

Lower elevations come into play around early November-Hendersonville, Brevard, and Chimney Rock/Lake Lure areas join in the chorus to present to you their version of Autumn’s beauty. Take in her beauty by a trail, winery, brewery, or apple orchard.

Jump Off Rock in HendersonvilleApple Orchard in Hendersonville

These cool evening temperatures are setting the perfect backdrop for leaf changes and the colors are dancing for joy. Consider getting out early to avoid the crowds. If you want to experience the views from the comfort of your vehicle, just jump on the Blue Ridge Parkway and go. Take your time...these spots are popular. Take  a picnic, breathe in the views, and commit your day to bathing in the colors. Follow this link and refresh daily to get your itinerary going.


Blue Ridge Parkway in the peak of Fall colors

One of our favorite ways to see the Fall colors is from the Great Smokey Mountains Railroad.  Sit back, relax, and let the leaves do all the work! 


Don’t want the same route as last year? Ready for a more adventurous way to see the leaves? Consider local zip lines, bike tours, mountain biking, kayaking, canoe, or SUP. 


Some of our fav ways to explore,


 By bike:Girl with mountain bike in the fall leaves


By zipline:


OR enjoy from one of the world’s oldest rivers, predating even the Appalachian Mountains that it flows through.


By the French Broad:





Whichever way you choose to indulge in Mother Nature’s splendor, it is sure to bring you back to this Way of Life year after year.





Mary Noble and Shayne in kitchen talking

Moving to Asheville or one of its surrounding communities? Or moving to Upstate South Carolina? 

We’d love to help you buy or build a home in the mountains of Western North Carolina or the lakes of Upstate South Carolina!  Contact us to let us know you’re considering a move and we’ll let you know about new listings that fit your criteria whenever they become available. You can also view the current listings in the neighborhood, and sign up for new listing alerts to stay in the loop.