Springtime is a wonderful time of the year to visit Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina. From March through May Biltmore holds what they call "Biltmore Blooms". It is a variety of blooming flowers and special events to welcome in Spring. The estate's grounds crew changes out the flowers of the Walled Garden constantly so there is always something new to see. The perennials of the walking gardens also have various blooms throughout the season. If you live within a couple of hours of Biltmore, a season pass is the best way to enjoy the blooms. That way you can comeback multiple times and save a bundle off the regular admission price. Living less than an hour away, we visit just about every other weekend in Spring. Here are just a few of our favorite photos from this year's Biltmore Blooms.
Just a short drive off the Blue Ridge Parkway, near Burnsville, North Carolina, stands Mount Mitchell. Mount Mitchell, at 6,684 ft in altitude, is the highest peak east of the Mississippi River. Walking to the observation deck from the parking lot on the paved trail is a bit strenuous, if you are out of shape, but just remember it is downhill on the way back. The views from the summit can be spectacular on a clear day. Elisha Mitchell, credited with first measuring the height of the summit, is entombed here. We were a bit early on our latest stop here as the gift shop and restaurant are only open between May and October. We still enjoyed our trip.
This weekend's road trip found us in Spruce Pine, North Carolina for their annual Fire on the Mountain Blacksmithing Festival. While the festival is relatively small it is a great place to learn about blacksmiths and their trade. Demonstrations are held thought the festival as well as a timed competition.
What a fantastic day to be at the "The Texas Returns: Featuring 100 Years of American Steam" event held by the North Carolina Transportation Museum in Spencer, North Carolina. We made the long trip to see the Texas locomotive unveiling. This was the first public exhibition of the former Western and Atlantic Railroad 4-4-0 since its 16 month restoration.
We don't need much of an excuse to take a road trip these days so we piled into the car and headed off to the NC Railroad Expo in Hickory, NC. The Expo was held at the very nice Hickory Metro Convention Center, just off off I-40.