Slow Living Cottage 1 sign 047_b

Asheville, NC

Bud and I spent a few days in North Carolina in a wonderful cottage named “Slow Living.” It is located a bit northwest of Asheville in Alexandria and is listed on Airbnb.com. Besides the beautiful surroundings, it has a hot tub outside and a Zen-like interior in a two-level cottage. We highly recommend it. In fact, we plan to go back each year at this time.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is accessible and the hiking choices are innumerable. The Pisgah National Forest surrounds the area. Fortunately, the weather was perfect – just a tad cool with plenty of sunshine and magnificent clouds.

Our first destination was Mount Mitchell, the highest peak east of the Mississippi. It takes eight hours to hike and has a five-star difficulty rating, so we wisely chose to drive. At the crest of the timeworn Black Mountains lies the summit of Mount Mitchell. What looms in the horizon is breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, rolling ridges and fertile valleys. We lingered in awe of ts magnificence (a video is below).

We picked Rattlesnake Lodge for our next adventure. Since the difficulty rating was only three stars, this time we hiked and the switchback trails made it easy. More than one hundred years ago, this was a private summer destination for prominent Asheville doctor and conservationist Chase P. Ambler. Rock ruins of his 1900 mountain retreat are today’s highlights which Bud thoroughly enjoyed.

According to rattlesnakelodge.com, a website dedicated to its history, Rattlesnake Lodge received its name from the multiple rattlesnake skins that adorned the ceiling in the property’s living room. Dr. Ambler was said to pay $5 for each rattlesnake, and reports say that more than forty of them were killed in the first three summers at the lodge.

As we reached the marker of this past settlement, we were greeted by two guys heading back down who warned that they spotted two Copperheads and a Rattler. Whether they were joking or not, I was ready to head back.

Be sure to click on the pictures to get a closeup view, and watch the video filmed at the summit of Mount Mitchell. The mountains and valleys are gorgeous.

Hot tub is to the right nestled among trees

Hot tub is to the right nestled among trees

Bull Creek valley from Blue Ridge Pkwy

Bull Creek valley from Blue Ridge Pkwy

Lane Pinnacle from BRP

Lane Pinnacle from BRP

Bud and Pat reach the top (by car)

Bud and Pat reach the top (by car)

view from Mount Mitchell summit

view from Mount Mitchell summit

cloud shadows and the Black Mountain range

cloud shadows and the Black Mountain range

Rattlesnake Lodge marker

Rattlesnake Lodge marker

Bud's favorite rock formation

Bud’s favorite rock formation

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