So, it’s one of my most favorite times of the year…Fall!
Every fall, my hubby & I try to do a couple of weekend getaways. We usually just go to NC because my parents own a cabin there.
NC is a great place to view the fall foliage.
The state also offers lots of fall activities…from fall festivals, corn mazes & train ghost rides to the Great Pumpkin weigh off, apple festivals and so much more,…you name it, and NC has it!
So, once again, we packed up and headed there for a long weekend. This year, we waited to go a week later than we did the previous year because the leaves hadn’t changed much when we were there last year.
It really depends on the weather as to when the leaves will peak so it’s a crapshoot if we will ever visit during that time.
Read more here about when and why the leaves change color.
We left after work on a Fri evening…it took us approximately 5 1/2 hrs to arrive at the cabin. It has taken as few as 4 hrs but it all depends on the traffic.
It was late when we arrived so we headed to bed.
The next morning, I woke up to this view! I never get tired of it.
My sweet hubby had my coffee & breakfast ready for me 🙂
Usually when we visit, we are constantly on the go. This time, we wanted it to be a bit more relaxing so we only had a few places on the list to visit.
After hanging out for a while at the cabin, we got dressed and headed to our favorite burger joint, Gibson’s Drive in.
After lunch, we headed to another favorite spot nearby called Bell Mountain.
However, it was too foggy to see much and the wind was blowing like crazy so we left. We decided to go back later before we headed home.
We spent the rest of the day riding around just admiring the beautiful fall colors. Once again, the leaves hadn’t yet peaked but they were more colorful than when we had gone last year.
That evening, we ordered pizza from Papa’s Pizza and just stayed in and built a fire at the cabin in this awesome fireplace!
The pizza was pretty good but I’ve had better.
After staying up late watching a movie on TV, we called it a night and headed for bed.
The next morning, we got up and headed to our favorite place for breakfast, Mary’s Southern Grill. The food is always so good and once again, it did not disappoint!
After breakfast, we decided to go back to a place we had visited last year called Picken’s Nose Trail in the Nantahala Forest. What a name, huh?!
Nantahala Forest is the largest of North Carolina’s four National Forests. It encompasses 531,148 acres with elevations ranging from 5,800 feet at Lone Bald in Jackson County to 1,200 feet in Cherokee County along Hiwassee River. The forest offers up to 600 miles of hiking trails.
It’s divided into three Districts, Cheoah in Robbinsville, NC, Tusquitee in Murphy, NC, and the Nantahala in Franklin, NC. Picken’s Nose is located in Franklin.
Read here for five hiking trails in Franklin that offer incredible views & read here for all hiking trails in the Franklin area.
The drive to the trail was located in, what felt to be, a very remote area. We didn’t see a whole lot of people around but we saw a few campers.
We had to drive down a long, one way gravel road for quite some time before arriving to the trailhead. The drive was really pretty with all the fall colors.
We passed several other hiking trails on the way.
Once we arrived, there was probably 5-6 other cars in the small parking area.
The trail is approximately 1.5 mi roundtrip. The first part starts out uphill and then eventually levels out.
It offers a few observation areas (some hidden) however, they are very steep and drop off sharply so proceed with caution.
Walking the trail
The views here are stunning! You could definitely see the fall colors popping through.
A short while later, after admiring the spectacular views, we decided to do something we had never done before…have a picnic on the side of a mountain! It was awesome! So peaceful.
After leaving here, we stopped off at a nearby trail that had once been opened to the public but has since closed.
We only walked a short distance to check out a bridge that we had spotted from the road.
Walking the short trail
After leaving this area, we headed back to the cabin to chill for the rest of the day.
The next morning, we got up and had coffee on the deck.
Later, we decided to head back to Mary’s for another delicious breakfast! This place is so neat on the inside.
I decided on the banana pancakes this time and they were so good!!
After breakfast, we decided to head back to Bell Mountain.
It was a much nicer day than when we had tried to visit the first time. The views driving up the mountain were beautiful.
Once we arrived to the top, only 1-2 other cars were in the parking lot. The drive up the mountain is VERY steep & curvy!
The views here are stunning!
Walk up to the top of the wooden observation deck for 360 degree views!
I’ve talked about all the spray paint on the rocks & deck in my last blog..read about it here.
After leaving here, we headed back to the cabin to pack up and head home.
On our way home, we decided to stop and have lunch in Murphy at a restaurant called Murphy’s Chophouse.
Read reviews here
I ate here for the first time on a different trip that I had taken with my sister. I thought it was very good so my hubby wanted to try it.
We arrived during an “off time” of day and only one other table was being waited on. The restaurant has a more upscale feel to it but doesn’t feel too “stuffy”.
We decided to start out with an appetizer. We ordered the hand battered fresh mozzarella lollipops. Can’t say that I’ve ever had mozzarella on a stick but I can say that it was delicious!
For our meal, we both ordered the Prime Rib Dip with au jus. The thinly sliced prime rib was served on french bread with provolone cheese. We both thought it was really good.
Our lunch cost $31 before tip and we both ordered water.
See their lunch menu here and their dinner menu here
After lunch, we started our short drive back home. We drove through the Ocoee on our way so we stopped for a few pictures.
We had another wonderful trip to NC and I look forward to many more in the future!
To read about lots more to do in the area, read my last blog post on NC.
Thanks for reading!!
PS.. I was so into fall this year, that I thought I would share something a little more personal with you guys….my front porch!
It looked like a pumpkin patch threw up on my front porch! 😉