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Mount Mitchell State Park, in North Carolina, is one of the few places on the globe that still stand apart from the average. We had driven by this park on an earlier trip and I made it a priority to see it on this trip. We get to the park by traveling the Blue Ridge Parkway, a beautiful way to travel with its gorgeous views!
At an elevation of 6,684 feet, the summit of Mount Mitchell, which lies in the Black Mountains, is the highest point east of the Mississippi. Breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, fertile valleys and rolling ridges, are what looms in the horizon, for those who climb this mighty summit. 1,946 acre Mount Mitchell State Park, misty and tree covered, will provide you with some of the most serene times you'll ever experience!
Blue Ridge Mountains
You will find Craggy Gardens right outside Mount Mitchell SP. These high peaks are home to incredible floral displays. Don't despair if you miss the peak bloom, but June and July are usually prime times to view the purple and pink blooms of rhododendron. In this high elevation section of the Parkway, Turkscap lily, May apple, Blackberry, and Violets burst onto the scene with color.
Stopping at an overlook on the way to the top of Mount Mitchell, we see these nice orange/red berries on Mountain Laurel trees all around the mountain. Beautiful!
Beautiful Mountain Laurels!
Looking at the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains is a real treat.
More of the Blue Ridge Mountains
We get someone to take our picture along the way.
Dolores and Joe
Far off in the distance I see this wonderful mountain lake.
We finally make it to the top of Mount Mitchell, highest peak east of the Mississippi River!
Top of Mount Mitchell
There is this unique looking mountain next to Mount Mitchell which has a large crater and looks like a volcano.
Cratered Mountain Next to Mount Mitchell
We hike up the observation tower on top of Mount Mitchell and meet a young couple from Chattanooga, Tennessee. They are kind enough to take a photo of us. Chattanooga is one of the places we visited on this trip.
Dolores and Joe on Observation Tower
On our way down from the observation tower, we decide to do the nature trail which will take us back to the parking area. There are some huge boulders up here!
Dolores and Huge Boulder!
After we drove down the mountain, we found a motel near by and then went to a country club down the road from it. It was at the foot of Mount Mitchell and we had dinner on the deck outside and watched the sun go down. How romantic!
Sun Setting Over Mount Mitchell
We then drove back to the motel, which is owned by a swiss man and his wife. He told us about a large bear that would come around at night and eat the apples off his tree. I was looking for this bear during the night and the next morning but I did not see it. My wife and I walked around his property before leaving to go back up the mountain and have breakfast at a restaurant in the park. What a beautiful property this motel sits on at the foot of Mount Mitchell!
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