Blowing Rock Journals

View From the Top

A June 2005 trip to Blowing Rock by chadk78

Quote: Located directly on the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Eastern Continental Divide, Blowing Rock has been a popular mountain getaway for over a century. At an elevation of 4,000 feet above sea level, this quaint village serves as a perfect hub to explore the surrounding mountains.

View From the Top

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Overview

Quote:
Since I had been longing to visit the mountains for quite a while, we decided to spend our third anniversary in Blowing Rock. The 75-degree temperature and constant breeze was a welcome change from the scorching summer days of the South Carolina piedmont. In addition, we found this charming little town to be very welcoming, as most everyone we met was quite hospitable. A wide variety of shops, restaurants, and accomodations are situated on Main Street or streets that intersect it, such as Morris St. and Sunset Dr. The town is centered by Broyhill Park, which features a playground, tennis courts, and many park benches (often occupied by families enjoying ice cream cones from Kilwin's Ice Cream Sho...Read More

Hemlock Inn

Hotel

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This quaint lodging is located on the site of one of the town's original boarding houses, dating back to Blowing Rock's first tourist boom in the 19th century. It has been refurbished over the years, but they still provide clean, comfortable rooms and quality customer service. We found the owners to be very helpful and fine stewards of Southern hospitality. For this stay, we booked the Honeymoon/Anniversary package, since it was our third anniversary. This included two nights' accommodations, a gift certificate to the Blowing Rock Cafe, two tickets to Grandfather Mountain, and fresh flowers in our room. All of this came out to only $199 - a steal in my book. The room was well-decorated wit...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 26, 2005

Hemlock Inn
Morris St.
Blowing Rock, North Carolina 28605
(828)-295-7987

Blowing Rock Cafe

Restaurant

Quote:
This romantic restaurant really puts me in mind of a Tuscan villa. Although I've never been to Tuscany, this is how I have it pictured--planter boxes on the exterior of the window sills were filled with colorful flowers, and a small patio was occupied by several tables for outdoor dining. The dimly lit interior was filled with several booths and individual tables. Near the front door was an autographed picture of Paul Newman (who I assumed has dined here before). Behind the register was a fully stocked wine rack. We were seated immediately upon arrival and given menus. The waitress was very helpful and gave us exceptional service. There was a wide selection of delicious dishes on the menu...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 27, 2005

Blowing Rock Cafe
349 Sunset Drive
Blowing Rock, North Carolina 28605
828-295-9474

Moses Cone Memorial Park

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Attraction

Quote:
Once the 3,600-acre estate of textile magnate Moses Cone, this park is managed by the National Park Service as part of the Blue Ridge Parkway. It offers a wide variety of recreational activities, such as horseback riding, hiking, and fishing. The focal point of the park is the 1899 Flat Top Manor (a.k.a. Moses Cone Manor), which today houses the Southern Highlands Craft Guild's Parkway Craft Center. The craft center offers a wide variety of items for purchase, ranging from baskets to pottery to books about the region. Artisans often perform their craft here at the site. The day we were there, they had a guy making wooden chairs and a lady weaving wool sweaters, hats, and scarves. We were v...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 26, 2005

Moses Cone Memorial Park
U.S. Hwy. 221
Blowing Rock, North Carolina
828/295-5222

The Blowing Rock

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Attraction

Quote:
This large rock formation, overlooking the John's River Gorge, is one of North Carolina's oldest tourist attractions and where the town of Blowing Rock gets its name. A constant wind funneled up from the valley below sweeps over the rock, making snow appear to fall upside down in winter. According to Native Americans, this phenomena was the work of the Great Spirit, in answer to the prayers of a young maiden. It seems this young maiden had fallen in love with a brave from another tribe. They would often meet secretly at this rock. When war came between the two respective tribes, the brave was torn by his love for the maiden and duty to his tribe. He became so distraught that he leapt from the ro...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on June 26, 2005

The Blowing Rock
U.S. Hwy. 321
Blowing Rock, North Carolina

Mast General Store and Annex

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Attraction | "Mast General Store"

Quote:
The rural community of Valle Crucis gets its name from the Latin "Valley of the Cross". When early settlers arrived here, the intersecting rivers appeared to them as crosses from the mountains above. The Mast General Store has provided quality merchandise to the people of this valley since 1883. It has now become somewhat of a tourist attraction/historic landmark. In fact, it has become so popular that it has expanded to several locations in western North Carolina and one in Greenville, SC. This one, however, is the original, genuine article. You will find many of the same items here today that would have been sold here 100 years ago. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the old sto...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on June 26, 2005

Mast General Store and Annex
Highway 194
Valle Crucis, North Carolina 28691
828/963-6511

Grandfather Mountain

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Story/Tip

Quote:
At 5,694 feet above sea level, Grandfather Mountain is the highest peak in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The Cherokees knew it as "Tanawha", or "Great Hawk". When European settlers arrived, they thought it resembled a bearded elderly man facing skyward. Thus the name Grandfather. Others have concluded that this name fits because the mountain is over 1 billion years old. French botanist Andre Michaux climbed it in 1794. He was so stirred by the view from the top that he exclaimed, "Long live America and the French Republic! Long live liberty!". Michaux discovered several rare plant species on the mountain that are found no other place on Earth. In fact, there are 42 endangered plant and animal s...Read More

About the Writer

chadk78

chadk78
Blacksburg, South Carolina

Blowing Rock Tips & Stories

Grandfather Mountain