Fun Run to Strawberry Hill

With summer in full swing, car club events are more frequent. We are enjoying our warm days, abundant sunshine and not too hot temps in the mountains. We met early at a visitor center on the Blue Ridge Parkway for a nice drive though some back roads down to South Carolina. There were so many cars for the event, we had to split into three groups! We were in the first group to roll out with the two others following at 15-20 minute intervals.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is green everywhere, with tall trees creating arbors over the road in places, and in others sunshine reaches to the road. You can see the sign on the right indicating a twisty section ahead.

Through occasional breaks in the trees, the mountains can be seen.

Sometimes getting the photo was difficult, with the cars in the shade and the mountain in the distance in full sun. I like to get a bunch of us in line on the road for the members to enjoy. Here, we had left the BRP and were cruising down Hwy 9 towards Lake Lure.

It was a lovely clear day, no fog and very few clouds in the sky. I took this picture on the fly as we zipped past a break in the trees.

We went through the tiny tourist town of Chimney Rock, grown up around the entrance to the state park for the attraction. The rock looks like a chimney on the roof of a house, with the flag on top. There is an observation deck on top, but we motored on by this day.

We wound around Hwy 9 and a couple more back roads, then got on Hwy 11 in South Carolina to reach our destination, Strawberry Hill cafe and market in Chesnee. Along the way we passed acres and acres of peach trees heavy with fruit. The farm has 800 acres of peach trees in 30 varieties, so they have peaches all spring and summer with different varieties ripening at different times of the year.

Large fields of strawberry plants had pickers busy. The farm has 115 acres of strawberry fields.

There is a large pavilion where they sell their locally grown peaches and strawberries, along with a local farmers market of vegetables. Across the road is the Strawberry Hill Cafe where we had BLT sandwiches piled high with fresh tomatoes from their gardens. The cafe is known for its country style breakfasts and fresh churned ice cream with farm fruits.

After lunch, we could shop. It was tempting to take home way more than we can eat.

Just look at these fabulous baskets of strawberries, all perfect without bruises or blemishes, and just a short way from the field where they were carefully picked by hand earlier in the day.

Peaches were abundant too, in two varieties at the time we were there. I don’t remember which variety this one was with its darker reddish color.

This variety was Harvester, a large clingstone peach.

I came home with a small basket of strawberries, and a few peaches from a large basket another couple purchased and shared with us.

I cleaned the strawberries, adding just a touch of sugar to bring out their juices. These were sweet sun-ripened beauties that didn’t need much. I served them on the Fourth of July holiday on pound cake with some blueberries. Fresh whipped cream finished off the dessert. Yum!

Do you have any large farms to get fresh produce, or a favorite farmer’s market?

21 thoughts on “Fun Run to Strawberry Hill

  1. Julie

    Thanks for another fun road trip. I live just down the road from a large strawberry farm. The orchard belt is farther away to the north. That’s a nice road trip when the trees are in bloom, all the beautiful flowers and deliciously scented air. The hills are bit to the south. When the weather is just right you can see the morning mist rise as the forest takes it’s first deep breath of the day.

  2. Rheanna

    We belong to a CSA so each week we receive a nice big box of produce. Whatever is ready to be harvested is what we receive. It’s been a great way to try new things that we normally might not buy. Like this week we are getting Swiss chard.

  3. karenfae

    I would have been tempted to bring home a basket or two of each and would have been busy freezing or canning

  4. What a fun day! I am enjoying the bounty of my son-in-law’s garden with squash. Yesterday he arrived with an armload of squash along with a basket of green beans! I’ve had some horrible grocery store strawberries in the last week. There is a lovely farm market I stop at when I have a chance.

  5. What a fun and beautiful drive. I love stopping at fruit stands so for me this seems like a perfect stopping point for your club drive, as well as a great purpose to go on a drive too! Yummy1

  6. Cheryl

    Nothing like fresh strawberries.. I’ve picked 6 flats this year for eating, freezing and drying. Peach season in Ontario is still a few weeks away but I’m eagerly waiting getting ready for canning. I joined a CSA and get to enjoy a wonderful variety of fresh veggies each week along with my little patch of Swiss chard, green beans and a couple of summer squash plants. Such a treat to pick my veggies for dinner each day. I would have been loading up with peaches. It’s hard to resist fresh picked strawberries and peaches. Enjoy! 🍓🍑

  7. What an amazing ride!! Such gorgeous countryside. And oh my, that farm stand…I would want to buy buckets and bushels of strawberries and peaches. They look SO good! What a fun day out and about. We do have a small farm stand here near the California coast, and a special Strawberry stand or two, which is a total blessing. Everything is straight from the land, and delicious. Thank you for this beautiful post. xo Lidy

  8. What a wonderful day out, those strawberries and peaches look amazing. We sometimes get apricots sold at a farm nearby in the summer and now and then people put out excess lemons at their gate .

  9. Looks like a fun day! The strawberries and peaches look yummy, too. Colorado peaches don’t come in until later in July or early August, but we get them from roadside stands around here and they are sooo good!

  10. I would love to have the fruit available locally………… luck here………..always love seeing your drives and explaining the area

  11. Sharon Vrooman

    Looks like a fun drive. I saw a ‘mini’ in the local market parking lot today – very rare around here (of course out of state plates).

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