There are many area resources for fly fishing, mountain biking, climbing, tubing, river rafting, horseback riding,shopping etc. There is a binder with specific recommendations in the barn house.
Do Not Miss
If you want to tour the Biltmore Estate you can get your tickets online and avoid the lines at the ticket office. I highly recommend getting the audio tour. Do not miss this national treasure.
Also not to be missed are are Triple Falls and High Falls in DuPont Forest (easy to moderate hikes), and Looking Glass Falls in Pisgah Forest (right off Rt 276).
The Blue Ridge Parkway loop described below is also not to be missed, even if you don’t get out of the car!
Nearby waterfall hikes
Here’s the link with all the info on DuPont waterfall hikes including Triple Falls and High Falls.
The Blue Ridge Parkway loop
Easy/Moderate day of views, hikes, waterfalls, swimming, and The Blue Ridge Parkway. (Best Views in the area)
An easy and fulfilling day is to drive on Rt 64 towards Rosman to Rt 215. Drive up the mountain towards Balsam Grove, and on the left you will see “Living Waters” Retreat center. This is private, but they allow people to park in their parking lot and walk the trail along the river. Walk to the far (left) side of the parking lot and pick up the trail there. You will see 2 beautiful waterfalls next to the old mill. Then continue on the trail to see several beautiful falls along the river ending in a huge rock wall and waterfall. It is and easy hike but can be slippery. After this continue up the mountain on Rt 215 to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Go north on the parkway to Devils Courthouse. If you want about a 20 minute uphill hike you will get amazing views from the top. Continue north on the Blue Ridge Parkway and enjoy scenic overlooks along the way. Graveyard fields is a more popular area to hike to a waterfall, but not my favorite because of all the people. Continue to the Looking Glass Rock scenic overlook on the right where you can park. Cross the street to the trailhead and hike about 20 minutes over a very rocky, rooty, trail rewarded by a magnificently beautiful waterfall and swimming hole. You’ll want to swim here even though the water is really cold! It is one of my favorite places! Then proceed north on the Blue Ridge Parkway to Rt 276 and turn toward Brevard. It takes about 30 minutes to get down the mountain and about 3 miles from Brevard on the left is Looking Glass Falls. It’s right next to the road so you can park there and walk down the stairs to the base of the falls. This is also a great place to swim if the water is not too fast due to rains. Continue towards Brevard and enjoy an ice cream cone at Dolly’s near the entrance to Pisgah Forest. It’s tradition. They make their own ice cream and every year the summer camps design their own flavor (we have 40 camps in this area). Don’t worry if you see a camp bus pull up right before you get there. They are super fast in serving large numbers! If you are ready to go back to Fodderstack Cabin, just continue straight on Rt 64 to King Road.
Our favorite hike
…is the Daniel Ridge loop in Pisgah Forest. Its about 6 miles with beautiful scenery and takes about 3 hours. Here is a link that describes it pretty well and gives you directions from the Fish Hatchery Road which is off of Rt 276 in Pisgah Forest.
On the way up you follow the river and see many small falls along the way. Quite scenic. There is a beautiful swimming hole at the base of one of the falls on the way up. The water is super cold, but awesome nevertheless!
To get to the trailhead, take 276 into Pisgah Forest and turn left on Fish Hatchery Road. Watch for Cove Creek Campground on Fish Hatchery Road. The trailhead for Daniel Ridge Loop is roughly 0.7 mile past it and is the next parking lot on the right. The trailhead is actually Forest Road 137, but it is also signed as Daniel Ridge Loop. Walk over the bridge and continue straight on the trail.
To go to the swimming hole, walk about 15 minutes or so and the trail branches off to the left. Go left and follow the river for another 15 minutes or so. You will walk through a few camping spots and then there is a steep path off to the left where you will see a gorgeous swimming hole at the base of a small waterfall. (You’ll hear it from the trail)
Another great hike for the strong of heart is the Looking Glass Rock Trail which you will pass on the way to the Fish Hatchery. It is a very long and difficult 3 mile uphill hike rewarded by amazing views at the top of Looking Glass. I would go early in the day during the week as this one is popular on the weekends. Bring lots of water and a good picnic for the top!
If you need more ideas, my friend Lydia Odell is an expert hiker and waterfall guide in this area and would have lots more challenging ones for you!
Restaurants and Shopping
Be sure to visit nearby Brevard, a small town affectionately known locally as “Mayberry,” for great shopping and dining. Falls Landing, Square Root, Jamie’s, Mayberrys, Marcos, and Hob Knob are our favorite restaurants there. Tell them we sent you! Also don’t miss Opie Taylor’s old fashioned, fabulous toy store. For other choices my friend, Laura Huff, writes The Carolina Epicurean, a regional food blog. She loves to answer email questions about area restaurants to go to if you are interested. http://carolinaepicurean.com/