Take Your Family ‘Leaf Looking’ on the Blue Ridge Parkway

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Are your kids tired of sitting in front of a computer for virtual learning? Take them on an outside adventure to check out the leaves on the Blue Ridge Parkway! This week (October 18 to 24) is peak week for the leaves in our part of the mountains and there are some beautiful sights to be seen right now.

The Blue Ridge Parkway route from mile 469 just outside of Cherokee to mile 443 where the parkway meets US-74 at the top of Balsam (outside of Waynesville) has several great places to view the leaves and the surrounding mountains.

Blue Ridge Parkway

Blue Ridge Parkway, 10/20/2020

If you’re worried about staying safe with the influx of visitors to the area for the color season, here are some tips for making the most of your family adventure! And remember, if you see a lot of cars at an overlook or parking area, just keep driving!

  • Between Cherokee and Bigwitch Gap, check out these overlooks for the best views: Raven Fork (mile 467.9) where you can see Cherokee Central Schools and Ballhoot Scar (mile 467.4) where you can see rock faces in the mountain.
  • SKIP WATERROCK KNOB!  Even on weekdays right now the parking area is full of visitors. You can get the same views from the overlooks between Soco Gap and Waterrock Knob. Specifically check out: Cranberry Ridge (mile 451.2) and Woolyback (mile 452.3).
  • Between Waterrock Knob and US-74 at the top of Balsam, this is where you will find the best leaves and mountain vista views right now. These overlooks have amazing views: Fork Ridge (mile 449) and Mount Lynn Lowry (mile 445.2).

So, pack some snacks, drinks, and a picnic lunch and enjoy some time outside on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Also… it can be up to 10 degrees colder at the top of the mountain than the bottom, so wear layers and make sure everyone brings a jacket!