By fine art photographer, Dan Carmichael
The splendor of the most-spectacular show on the East coast is right around the corner – Autumn on the Blue Ridge Parkway! For those familiar with the show, well.. nothing more need be said. For those not, only one word can describe the show: stunning. Fall on the Blue Ridge Parkway should have been counted as one of the wonders of the world.
If you plan to enjoy the fall foliage show this year, now is the time to start planning. Here are a few things to consider.
Accommodations: In the mountain regions of North Carolina and Virginia, fall is the peak season for hotels, motels and bed-and-breakfasts. As such, they raise their rates just like hotels and motels on the coast do during summer. You should consider booking now. It is not uncommon for rooms to be filled during the fall colors season. When researching accommodations, remember to ask about package deals which can help you save money.
Timing your visit: is a bit harder. It would be convenient were the Autumn foliage show always the same – beginning on the parkway north in Virginia and progressing south as the season progressed. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. At any given location, peak colors can vary from year to year depending upon environmental conditions. In addition to that, peak colors vary depending upon elevation. Colors in two different areas of the parkway some distance apart can peak at the same time. I will be writing more about this plus hints and tips on where to go and what to expect in the near future.
Saving money: If you’re budgeting and wish to save money, consider these ideas. First, take a hike! As opposed to driving back and forth and burning expensive gasoline, find a nice place with vibrant fall colors, stop the car and take a hike. There are many trails on the Blue Ridge Parkway and no matter where you are, one is probably close by. The fresh air and exercise will do you good.
Second, pack a lunch or grab some take-out and bring it with you to the parkway. There are many places on the Blue Ridge Parkway where breaking away to go get lunch can mean a substantial drive to find a local restaurant or store. Taking your breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner with you can save the gas. Besides, what could be better than sitting on the parkway on a cool, sunny fall day and watching the splendid show while you eat!
Plan ahead: Doing something as simple as mapping your trip ahead of time can make your entire day more enjoyable. Trying to figure out where you are or where you are going can waste gas and time, both of which can be much better spent on the parkway enjoying the brilliant show.
More articles about the Autumn foliage show on the Blue Ridge Parkway coming soon.
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