Discover the Southern Charm of Asheville, NC

By Your Friends at the Reynolds Mansion B&B, Asheville NC

It seems like half the folk you talk with recently are either moving to North Carolina or know someone who is. Perhaps that is because this state has one of the most comfortable climates of any in the entire nation. Situated just about half way between Manhattan state and Florida, North Carolina offers everything from gorgeous beaches to lush forests to picturesque majestic hills to mountains that will take your breath away. The many different settings in North Carolina make it the perfect destination for nearly everyone. Holiday-makers and permanent residents are flocking to the state in search of quiet mountain getaways and white wonderful beaches of the costal regions and outer banks. With the average summer temperature below ninety degrees, many consider North Carolina weather nearly perfect. One of the most well-liked destinations in North Carolina is the city of Asheville, home to our very own historic Reynolds Mansion B&B.

With its rolling landscape and southern charm, it’s no wonder George Vanderbilt decided on Asheville to build America’s largest non-public home. The Biltmore Estate is a huge dwelling with a floor space of more than 175,000 sq ft. And is still owned by the family and operated as a museum today. The Estate is still a working estate with a dairy farm and winery.  The fourth floor of this grand mansion was recently opened to offer its visitors a view of the maid’s quarters and a phenomenal view of the entire estate from the observatory.

Another popular destination is Cherokee and Maggie Valley, the 2 towns that service The Great Smoky Mountains State Park on the eastern side. These towns are the heart of Indian American culture in the Southeast.

While shopping in Cherokee you can experience the days of many years past and what it was like for our native peoples and early settlers of the South. When it comes to selecting this state for your house, something about North Carolina pulls the individual that wants to live in a log cabin. The log cabin building industry is booming in North Carolina as cabins are springing up everywhere in towns such as Maggie Valley, Asheville, Murphy and all along the border with Georgia and South Carolina.

Maggie Valley is one of the more popular places to rent a cabin and just sit back and enjoy God’s beautiful creation. It is the place to sit on the porch of your cabin with a cup of coffee, look off into the distant hills and forget about life for a season. North Carolina also has an opulent past, playing a vital part in the Civil War as well as being renowned for the 1st airplane flight at Kitty Hawk by the Wright siblings. Spend a while exploring the various Civil War battle fields and get a glimpse of struggle our country and our folks endured during a tricky time in our history.

Lots of other superb treasures are waiting to be experienced in the lovely state of North Carolina. Why not spend an extended vacation or a lifetime in this unique area of the United States?

Visiting soon?  Stay with us at the Reynolds Mansion B&B in Asheville, NC!

Asheville, NC: Gateway to the Appalachian Mountains

By the Reynolds Mansion B&B in Asheville, NC

Henry David Thoreau once related, “In wilderness is the preservation of the world.” There is not any larger example of this than the North Carolina Mountains. Western North Carolina (WNC) offers residents some of the most diverse climates, trees and wildlife in the world. It’s a place full of breathtaking, spellbinding, naturally occurring phenomenon including forests, mountaintop vistas, waterfalls and riverside. Over the years, people, local communities, state officers and the central government have worked to preserve the pretty landscape in Western North Carolina, along with the animals and plants that live there. This effort continues today and every year.

And, as new folks relocate to the area looking for a better standard of living, they discover an ancient mountain.

The Mountains in North Carolina Tell Their Story: Appalachian Mountain Facts

The Appalachian Mountains are a record of Earth’s history. According to the U.S. Geological Survey:  The Appalachians are old. A look at rocks exposed in the present day’s Appalachian Mountains exposes lengthened belts of folded and thrust faulted sea sedimentary rocks, volcanic rocks and slivers of ancient ocean floor.

Robust proof [shows] that these rocks were deformed during plate collision. The birth of the Appalachian ranges, some 480 million years back, marks the first of several mountain building plate collisions that ended in the construction of the supercontinent Pangea with the Appalachians close to the center.

The start of the Appalachian Mountains led on to many millions of years of Earth changes. Ultimately, approximately 60 million years back, the Appalachians we all know today began to take shape. The exact boundaries of the Appalachian Mountains are debatable, but most professionals agree the range extends over 1,500 North to South miles from Canada to Georgia. As a system of ridges split into several distinct ranges, the Appalachian Mountains span two nations and 15 states : Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. Perhaps the most famed attraction is the 2,100-mile Appalachian Trail (AT) that runs from Springer Mountain in Northern Georgia to Mount Katahdin in Maine.

Access to the AT is easily found in Western North Carolina agricultural areas like Hot Springs, Max Patch, a well known bald, or on the Blue Ridge Parkway, just outside of Asheville, wherein you will also find the Reynolds Mansion B&B.

The Magic of the Blue Ridge Mountains

One of the most well known provinces in the Appalachian Mountains is the Blue Ridge. The Blue Ridge Mountains stretch through Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina and Georgia.

They are home to the highest peaks in Eastern Northern America, the highest being Mount Mitchell in Western North Carolina at 6,684 feet. The trees are what give the Blue Ridge its name. According to the Nation’s Park Service, hydrocarbons released into the atmosphere by the trees create their signature color. The Blue Ridge offers a range of natural attractions including 2 countrywide parks : the Shenandoah in the North and the Great Smokies in the South. The Blue Ridge Parkway, a 496-mile scenic road that connects the 2 parks, provides amazing mountain lookouts and access to hundreds of hiking trails. The Great Hazy Mountains : A Union of Forest Preservation and Land Conservation The Great Hazy Mountains cover the border between North Carolina and Tennessee. The Great Hazy Mountains Countrywide Park is one of the biggest forest preservation areas in the Eastern United States.

According to StateParks the park was once part of Cherokee homeland and now pulls over nine million visitors every year. There are over 800 miles of hiking trails that range all the way from straightforward to difficult including seventy miles of the Appalachian Trail. In the summer, weather in the park consists generally of abundant rainfall and high humidity, making healthy growing conditions. Overall, Western North Carolina climate and Asheville weather brings four balanced seasons.

Winters and summers are moderate compared with other regions. Native trees, plants and flowers bloom during 3 seasons, and in the winter, snow-peaked mountain views peek thru barren, forest trees. StatePark reports that, “some 100 species of local trees find homes in the Smokies, more than any other Northern US state park.” The site adds that “almost 95% of the park is forested, and about 25% of that area is old growth forest — one of the biggest blocks of deciduous, temperate, old-growth forest remaining in North America.” The Nation’s Park Service explains that no other area of equal size in a gentle climate can match the park’s superb variety of plants, animals, and invertebrates. Over 10,000 species have been documented. The mountains in North Carolina, surrounding Asheville, are a place where the mountains, rivers, trees and animals tell an ancient story.

Be still and listen and you’ll hear the voice of the land.

Come enjoy the splendor of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Appalachian Trail, and stay with us at the Reynolds Mansion B&B in Asheville, NC.

Things To Remember When Hiking With Kids

By the Reynolds Mansion, Your Asheville NC Bed and Breakfast

As a recreational pursuit, hiking has few equals. It is healthy, great exercise, allows you to commune with nature, and it’s free. And to top it all off, it could be a fantastic family outing. You can teach your kids at a very young age to appreciate nature and the importance of hiking as a lifetime activity. But before taking a hike with the kids, stop and consider a few factors that may help make sure that the outing is delightful for all parties involved.

Most importantly, you should always shield your youngsters. One of the risks which slips past many moms and pops is skin damage from the sun. Always lather your little ones up with an acceptable SPF sun screen to avoid a burn.  You might also consider buying kids wear that has built-in sun protection.

If you’re going to be carrying a kid on the hike, it is very important to find a light and snug baby carrier. There is nothing worse than being unhappy when you’re meant to be enjoying a hike.

Before leaving on your journey, check the small ones’ shoes to confirm that they fit well and are cozy.  Keep in mind that children grow very quickly so if you have not been on a hike in some time, they made have outgrown their walking shoes.

Be prepared to keep your kid engaged in the hike. Shop around the web for interactive hiking kits. These are guaranteed to keep youngsters excited while learning a good deal in a hiking trip. Ultimately, remember to bring lots of food and drinks. Hot, hungry children can be more than a little cranky and it’s always best to be prepared. If you adore hiking, think about making it a family activity.

Most families spend very little time together and a lot of time inside. Enjoy the outdoors and start hiking!

Hike the Blue Ridge Mountains, and book your stay in Asheville with us at the Reynolds Mansion.  We’re a top rated Asheville, NC Bed and Breakfast with great access to hiking in the Asheville area.

Joseph McLean Gregory returns to his ancestral home.

Reynolds Mansion guests were delighted this weekend by having Joseph Mclean Gregory, the grandson of Senator Robert Reynolds and Evelyn Washington McLean return to his ancestral home.  Mr. Gregory was a delight at breakfast,  and was very open to sharing with everyone the information on his rich family history.   It was a dream come true for all of us here at Reynolds Mansion.

Joseph took time to sign copies of his new book “The Hope Diamond” (Evalyn Walsh McLean and the Captivating Mystery of the World’s Most Alluring Jewel) for all the guests and also left us a supply of autographed copies that are for purchase here at Reynolds.

Joseph will be returning in the near future to have a scheduled book signing event here at Reynolds Mansion,  so we will keep you posted here on the blog of any scheduled upcoming events.   Copies of both of his book are also for sale on Amazon.com.

The pictures below are of Joseph Gregory with the guests and of him and Scarlett.