Autumn is finally coming to our part of the world. It is a bit late this year due to the warm temperatures continuing long past its normal time. We decided to take a hike last week at Devil’s Courthouse on the Blue Ridge Parkway to see some of the color. Driving up the parkway, we decided to have lunch at the Pisgah Inn as it was the last day it would be open for the season. Views from there are really wonderful.
The Inn is high on the parkway, around 5000 feet, and the colors were somewhat muted this year due to the warm temperatures. We needed to have a cold snap sooner.
After lunch we continued upward to the Devil’s Courthouse, a rock formation with a hiking trail.
The hike is about a half mile long, but steep, gaining 258 feet in elevation from the trailhead parking lot to the top.
The beginning of the trail is paved, with bumpers to channel rainwater.
About halfway up, the trail turns to gravel and rock, and still steep.
But the view is worth the effort, even though this area is past peak and many trees have lost their leaves entirely.
You can see for many miles from the top, layers upon layers of mountains extending into the distance.
It was a nice day, fairly clear but still with a bit of haze over the mountaintops that gives the Blue Ridge its name.
They are a bit difficult to see, but in the middle of the sky in this photo are three eagles we saw soaring around. Naturally when they came close, those pictures were too blurry to use.
We headed back down after a while, stopping at more overlooks on the way home. Still at this level, there was some color, just not as vibrant as we have seen in the past.
A little lower elevation was past peak too.
But as we kept going, the colors became a bit richer.
Closer to 4000 feet elevation, the reds started to show up.
Lovely, isn’t it? I love this time of year!
Still, there is a lot of green left, so peak here is a few more days away.
I am afraid that most of the color will not show this year and the leaves will drop before they reach their full brightness.
We are about at the peak at our home now. But the rain and wind in the past few days brought down a lot of leaves. So it won’t be a banner year for color, still it is beautiful.
So, I was sitting in the den late afternoon just a couple of days ago, and noticed movement outside on the veranda. A black bear was on the other side of the sliding glass door, just looking around. I jumped up to grab the camera, and it turned around just in time for me to snap a pic of its backside.
I ran around to the other side of the kitchen to try and get its face, but I wasn’t fast enough. This is a relatively small one, about 150-200 pounds.
Later we saw it again behind the house going up the mountainside. DH is hoping it continues to move on, LOL!!
Do you have color in your part of the world?