Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Sitting on top of world at Balsam Mountain

On trips to the Smokeys, we often spend a night or two at the Balsam Mountain Campground.

This site is off the Blue Ridge Parkway just northeast of Cherokee, NC.

Its pretty and usually there are not a lot of people. After all, its about 20 miles or so to the nearest commercial area.

And it sits at 5,310 feet. That means it is going to be cooler than other campsites at lower elevations in the park.

That's what I like. Cool temperatures and although its not Texas, the stars at night are big and bright.

There are two other aspects that we seem to like. One is the unique picnic area that sits atop a hill about a half mile west of the campground. There are traditional picnic tables and also tables that are constructed out of huge slabs from rocks. I believe they were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps sometime back in the 1940s.

Sometimes fog hugs the top of the mountain and gives the area an eerie look, which somehow I seem to like since it makes for unique pictures.

And for the adventurous, there is the Heintooga Road which is a one-way, one-lane drive down the mountain. We like to make the trip.

The area has drawn a lot of good reviews.

Next post: Nov. 29, 2011

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