BBOnline Member SINCE 2003
 

Wildberry Lodge

135 Potato Branch Road, Leicester, North Carolina 28748
Innkeeper(s): Glenda and Ken Cahill

How to not get eaten by bears 20 Sep 2016, 6:14 am

 

Recently, I was at the French Broad River Park with my son. After I got him into the stroller and was walking through the parking lot towards the park, I noticed a crowd of people coming my way all gawking and gasping and pointing. Turns out that there was a black bear right next to me and I didn’t even notice. After I realized what was going on and saw the bear, the bear also saw me….and the mass of humans heading our way. Both the bear and I were more frightened of the crowd than of each other and we scurried off in opposite directions to safety.

No, I was not scared of the bear. Maybe I should have been. I suppose I was shocked more than anything. In that fleeting moment when the bear and I locked eyes I simply did not feel the need to be threatened. Definitely on alert, but not threatened.  What was threatening was the mob of people running towards the bear. If seeing that made me uneasy I can only imagine how the bear felt and would have reacted if approached any further.

This experience prompted ‘How to not get eaten by bears’ as black bears are a fairly common sight not only in our country woods but also in our neighborhoods.  And with many of you WildBerry guests loving our wildlife and hiking adventures, chances are that you may encounter a bear sighting.

 

What to do if you see a black bear:

  • Immediately pick up any small children.
  • Stay calm. Black bears are primarily wary and shy creatures and if left alone will probably leave you alone. Unprovoked black bear attacks are extremely rare.
  • Let them know you are human and not prey by talking to them calmly. Be still while raising your arms into the air and slowly waving them. If the bear stands on its legs, this is usually because the bear is curious about you, not necessarily because it wants to eat you.
  • Do not feed the bear. Bears become much more bold and interested in you if they know you have food for them. The consequences of this are unwanted.
  • DO NOT PLAY DEAD. This only works with Grizzly Bears.
  • DO NOT RUN. Black bears can run as fast as a race horse up and down hill. In the event a bear is motioning to you for an attack, scream and shout and stand your ground! Leave any packs on your body so the bear may grab the pack and not you. Punch and kick concentrating on the muzzle and head. If you have a blunt object, you should definitely use it.

 

 

What to do if you are camping:

  • Secure all bags of trash up high out of bears reach.
  • Pack your travel foods in air-tight, odor proof containers.
  • Choose a camp site that is upwind of food stores and cooking sites.
  • Keep the camp site extremely clean by picking up all trash and cleaning off all cooking and eating utensils.
  • Some people choose to take extra precautions and put up a bear fence. It is called a Bear Shock Electric Fence and made by a company called UDAP based out of Butte, Montana. This method is primarily used for Grizzly’s but I’ve heard of people using it for black bears as well.

 

I want to press how unproblematic black bears usually are. They are still wild animals though and therefore unpredictable. The tips outlined here will certainly help avoid a bear attack which would undoubtedly wreck your day.

 

Written by Kate Randall

Colemans Boundry Hike 13 Sep 2016, 9:18 am

Five years ago, Big Ivy wrapped its beautiful tendrils around my heart. I fell in love with this hike quite easily and I know you would too. It is rife with trailheads, waterfalls and a remote kind of beauty that gives way to quietude and contemplation.

 

The goal of the Big Ivy hike for many people (or Colemans Boundry, as the old timers and locals like to call it) is to get to Douglas Falls. Douglass Falls is a 70-ft waterfall with a straight free fall from a high bluff. There are two primary ways to get to Douglas Falls. The route I have always taken is to drive through Barnardsville to the Big Ivy entrance point into the Pisgah National Forest. From here you enter into a thick forest of laurel, rhododendron and black birch and drive up a 9-mile gravel road that climbs the underbelly of the Craggy Mountains. The drive is breathtaking, pure and simple.

The second way in, is from up top when hiking in Craggy Mountains. This way is much more strenuous so be prepared for a workout if you decide to take this route.

The temperature is much cooler and the air smells so fresh and clean. The drive up has several gorgeous waterfalls cascading down the mountain so feel free to stop your car anytime to take photographs. This area has about 30+ miles of trail-heads to explore as well, most of which are marked on your way to the top of the Douglas Falls trail.

Once you get to the Douglas Fall trail it is a pleasant and short half mile trek. Due to the large amount of streams the paths can become quite saturated with water so do wear proper hiking boots and tread carefully as some areas can be slippery.

 

No matter how you prefer to spend your time outdoors, it seems like Big Ivy caters to it all. Hiking, horseback riding, fishing, camping and swimming in the river are all available. You don’t even have to leave your car to enjoy this area! The hikes range from easy, moderate to difficult and will please the spryest of nature enthusiasts to more laid back family outings as well.

Coleman Boundary is located in the city of Barnardsville, NC in the Pisgah National Forest. It is about a 30 minute drive from Asheville. Entrance is free and open year round.

Directions from Asheville:

Head west on I-26 toward Barnardsville. Take exit 15 for Jupiter/Barnardsville (NC Hwy 197. Turn right and follow NC 197 for about 6 miles. Take another right onto Dillingham Road and it’s about another 6 miles from this point until you enter into the Pisgah National Forest.

 

Written by Kate Randall

Where the Wild Ones Roam 6 Sep 2016, 10:49 am

 

“Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole”. -Roger Caras

 

When I read this quote I immediately thought of our four-legged friends at the Wildberry. They have this spirit that seems to bind all of us together as a family. As though we are all individual components that just don’t make sense without their presence. The unity and joy they bring to our hearts play a huge role not only in our day-to-day lives but also in what makes the Wildberry Lodge what it is. A haven.

 

Three dogs, two cats. Each have their own story, just like we all do. Ken and Glenda (owners and boss extraordinaire) built the lodge 16 years ago and it’s as though they built along with it a mighty invisible beacon to signal that this was a safe place to be, a refuge if you will, and it has been summoning creature and people alike ever since.

 

I think about how much better the world would become if we could learn to love as unconditionally as dogs do. If we loved like cats, however, that would be bad. Imagine me spitting hairballs in Glenda’s favourite shoes every time we had a disagreement. I’m not going to lie though, I’ve thought about it. I must be part cat.

 

 

Without further ado, I’d like to introduce to you the wildberry wild ones.

 

Dirty (sooty cat, 10 years old)

This chill mama cat wandered up to the lodge back in 2006. She got her name because she looks quite sooty even fresh out of a bath. Dirty got busy pretty quickly and surprised Ken and Glenda with five kittens! They adopted out all five cats to wonderful homes, their house included. You see, one of the kittens did not want to be adopted. She put her little paws up and refused to get into the cage to go to the adoption center and refused to come back out once she got there too! She even went so far as to sabotage her adoption process by acting like a bully and beating the crap out of all her sibling kittens so no one would want her. This is how Ken and Glenda brought home….

Pumpkin (orange cat, 9 years old)

Pumpkin played the game well. She chose her home and her home listened. Pumpkin is a loud mouthed meower who will shamelessly follow you around for rubs and attention. If you let up your hand for even a second, the meowing begins again. We love both these cats and their adoring affection.

Chloe  (black lab, 12 years old)

This well-fed goof ball came to us in 2006 when she was 2 years old.  Remember that we all have our stories and unfortunately for this sweet soul her story started out dark. Her original parents loved her but their neighbors did not. The neighbors dealt out an assortment of abuses including but not limited to kicking her and attempting to poison her.

With a history like that, I am inclined to say that Chloes real story started when Ken and Glenda adopted her and took her out of harms way. She was very shy and afraid when she first arrived and was still recovering from her previous life but quickly showed her loving spirit and happy-go-lucky personality.

Chloe LOVES food. She will try to convince you with her big sweet eyes that she is deprived of food but her adorable rotund belly gives her away. Don’t let her fool you! She’s a con-artist in the name of bacon scraps and belly rubs! She is by far that sweetest dog ever.

 

Ginny  (husky/whippet mix, 4 years old)

Oh Ginny…..

Ginny is something else. She definitely seems to hold herself above the company. We are her servants and she knows it. Calling her the leader of the pack simply does not do her diva attitude justice. Without a doubt she is the RULER of the pack and guardian of the lodge.

She definitely has the looks to back it up too. The words regal, striking and commanding come to mind and of course absolutely beautiful. Ken and Glenda saw her glamour shot on the internet when they adopted her from Blue Ridge Husky Rescue in July 2012. She rocks one brown eye and one blue and looks as though she’s wearing enough eye liner to give any 80’s rock band a run for their money.  It’s no wonder Ken & Glenda fell head over heels in love with her.

With such a dynamic attitude as hers you can bet that Ginny has caused a bit havoc in the lodge over the years. Why are there so many missing buttons from Kens shirts? Ask Ginny. Why did the lodge require new tile in the great room? If you asked Ginny, she’d proudly tell you about how she pulled strand after strand out of the lovely berber carpet to make a big comfy bed fit for the doggie queen she is.

Oh Ginny…..

 

Cosmo  (german shepard, 5 years old)

Cosmo wandered up to the lodge around the same time Ginny came around. She was abandoned and just knew that the lodge was a place she could go to for safety. I remember it took weeks to get her to come into the lodge because she was so scared. Cosmo formed a very strong bond with Glenda and is a total momma’s girl. I can’t tell you the drama that ensues whenever Ken and Glenda need to leave for any duration of time. She pouts and throws fits like my toddler and howls and yips with pure happiness whenever they return. It shows all of us the love, trust and endless gratitude that Cosmo has for them.

She has really been opening up lately, more so now than ever, to people other than Ken and Glenda and it’s thanks to the love and kindness she receives from everyone at the Wildberry Lodge.

 

In Loving Memory of Sassy (husky/shepard mix, 16 years old)

Sassy is the original protector and mascot of the Wildberry Lodge. During the construction period they found her under a rock and she was with them every step of the way from that day forward. They found her under a rock and she was their rock. Sassy was so very special to all our hearts and was the embodiment of steadfast, devoted and loving.

Fun fact about ole Sassafras

She apparently was not too keen about the arrival of Chloe and would lure her away from the lodge and escort her all the way down the mountain to the end of the drive way and just leave her there. Ken kept having to go down and bring her silly butt back.

Sassy, we miss you fiercely every day.

 

Written by Kate Randall

 

Black Balsam Knob 30 Aug 2016, 8:53 am

 

 

Black Balsam Knob is my very own land of enchantment. I treasure this place more than pirates treasure rubies and emeralds. Every year I pack my picnic basket and my son into the car and hit the Blue Ridge Parkway for a wonderful and easy drive to the incredible area of the southern Appalachians. This is the place I go to quench my wanderlust thirst.

With features reminiscent of the Alpines due to the extraordinary Spruce and Balsam forests, and balds that look as though they are straight from New England, it is easy to feel as though you’ve been transported out of the Appalachians. Having such juxtaposing landscapes in the same spot is not common and it’s certainly a delight having such apparent diversity to play in.

There are several entry points but my favourite point of entry takes me through a short grove of evergreens. My footsteps feel soft walking upon the carpets of pine needles as I inhale the aromatic loveliness of various conifers. When I say “land of enchantment” I’m referring to this spot in particular. If you were ever to encounter woodland sprites and little goblins then I’m certain it would be here. Fairy-tales could gain much inspiration from taking a walk in this evergreen grove.

The trails out of the grove and up to balds have endured much traffic over the years. As such the trails have turned more into trenches in some areas. Tread carefully and watch those ankles! Some of the gullies are now waist deep.

 

Once you make it up to the balds you will be stunned by the graceful slopes and elegant curves of the mountains. I know I am every time. The views are so dramatic that it makes me think Braveheart could have been filmed here. In the movie William Wallace says, “Your heart is free, have the courage to follow it”. That certainly resonates with me while exploring the contours of these mountains. My heart does feel free and it pulls me toward the unknown of exploration and the courage to see it through even when I find that I have drifted off the beaten path.

 

At this point you are above 6,000 feet in elevation. The air is thinner and much colder. You can expect the temperature’s to be at least 15-20 degrees lower than in Asheville. Spring trips can still feel like winter so trips in late autumn may already be too cold. I like to go in the Fall for the sweeping 360 views with all the brilliant harvest colours. I dress appropriately and always bring something to cover my ears for protection from the cold winds.

 

The Knob is located at mile marker 420.2 but there are no signs that actually tell you that you have arrived at your destination. There is a turn off point on an off road where cars can park to the side.It’s easy to miss so keep your eyes peeled. Black Balsam Knob is about an hour’s drive from Asheville.  Have fun kids!

 

 

Written by Kate Randall

Shindig on the Green 26 Aug 2016, 9:21 am

Shindig on the Green

Shindig on the Green is a local outdoor concert on the Bascom Lamar Lunsford Stage in downtown Asheville. They are celebrating their 50th season of bringing the beautiful dance and music traditions of the Southern Appalachia to us this year.

Locals and visitors alike pack in with their families, friends, lawn chairs and blankets around sundown from 7pm to about 10pm. Although music is at the forefront of the entertainment they also host a variety of other talent such as story telling and informal jam sessions. Informal jam sessions happen in pockets around the stage and throughout the park and are open to anyone to join. So pack your instruments if you want to join in on the fun.

Story telling heritage plays an important role here with deep roots in Appalachian history. Verbal story tellers inspire limitless imagination inside of us and they are not confined to the interpretation of past events. We are very lucky to have this time honored tradition still thriving in these parts, for they truly enrich our lives.
Shindig on the Green is produced by the Folk Heritage Committee who “supports the preservation and continuation of the traditional music, dance and storytelling heritage of the Southern Appalachian Mountains”. This event gathers between 3,000 and 5,000 people throughout the duration of the summer. Locals love this event but it has gained so much attention since its inception in 1967 that it brings people from all over the country and the globe.

Concessions are available for you if you get hungry. This year Okie Dokies Smokehouse and The Hop Ice Cream Café will be vending. No alcohol or dogs are allowed in Pack Square Park.

Line up for the remainder of the 2016 year

  • August 13th– Fines Creek Flat Footers, Appalachian Mountaineers
  • August 20th– Little River Cloggers, Dixie Darlin’s
  • August 27th– Bailey Mountain Cloggers, Hotfoot Cloggers
  • September 3rd– Cole Mountain Cloggers, Mountaineer Cloggers

 

 

Written by Kate Randall

Jack of the Wood and the legend of the GreenMan 10 Aug 2016, 6:43 pm

Outstanding local beer, Irish ballads, merriment and a dash of legend. This is Jack of the Wood. A Celtic style pub located in downtown Asheville and the original location of GreenMan Brewing.

Jack of the Wood’s aim was to capture the character and style of Gaelic peoples as well as the country’s food culture. Their menu is laced with traditional Irish pub grub such as Fish and Chips, Shepherds Pie and the Scotch Egg. All the epitome of simple, homely comfort food.

 

Jack of the Wood was known for their GreenMan Brewing ales, crafting delectable malty nectars since 1997. Although the brew house was sold, Green Man brews are still available here.  Also on tap is an ever-changing menu of local and specialty brews and of course if you are looking to imbibe in some serious merry-making they have a fine assortment of Bourbons and usquebaugh (whiskey in Gaelic).

Scot/Irish settlers flocked to this area for many unfortunate and trying reasons, but also in part because they were drawn to the rugged majesty of our highlands, no doubt reminding them of their homeland and hope for their future. Much of their identity is still imprinted in our local culture, most notably by way of folk music.

You will be hard pressed not to see a fiddle player somewhere in downtown captivating peoples with their spirited ditties, perhaps ensuing an impromptu, good ole fashioned hootenanny. Yeah, that’s kind of our style. And Jack of the Woods exemplifies this style as well.

 

What is it about an Irish ballad that moves us so deeply? The music seems to capture the emotion and aspiration of an entire Nation. Instrumental poetry, if you will. Irish Sessions are hosted on Sundays and start around 3pm. The talent and sound varies and I hope you get to enjoy the uilleann pipes, celtic harp and the bodhran drum (the heartbeat of Irish music).
Wednesdays is the Mountain Music Jam and Thursdays are all about that good-ole fashioned bluegrass.

Who is the Green Man?

Have you ever walked into a forest of ancient woodlands and got the feeling that you were not alone? Many people believe that it is the GreenMan walking with you.

The GreenMan has always been with us. He is believed to be a symbol of life, death and re-birth and as a counter-part for the primal Goddess of earth, Gaia. He represents the strong reliance and union with our natural environment. He is a commanding yet comforting sight. A blend of man and forest often with vines and sometimes flowers coming out of his mouth, ears or nose. The artistic portrayals vary from time periods and cultural differences.

Most GreenMan depictions are of stone and wood carvings in churches, cathedrals, abbeys and chapels throughout Europe (most prominently in Britain and France). For many this serves as evidence of the strength and vitality of pre-christian traditions and beliefs. Most Celtic Gods and Goddesses were destroyed during the conversion period but the people simply would not let go of this beautiful and spiritual figure which is why we see it surviving alongside the christian religion, even today.

 

Written by Kate Randall

Hot Springs, NC 24 Jul 2016, 8:39 pm

 

A day trip to Hot Springs

We certainly have some sizzling summer temperatures here lately, soaring into the 90’s and just sitting there, baking each and every one of us. I have not seen this many flip-flop wearers since I was in Florida!

I was thinking of ways to beat the heat this Fourth of July and I instantly thought of a trip to Hot Springs.  Hot Springs is a small town with big heart. A town that welcomes all passers-by, drifters and wanderers. A town saturated with history and culture. And more to the point, a place with an abundance of water.

How would you like your water? Pleasantly balmy, highly mineralized, silky smooth and bubbly? Then its Hot Springs Spa for you. Calming, flowing, crisp and cool? Then it’s Spring Creek and the French Broad River for you. How about thrilling, white-capped and raging? Also the French Broad for you and all conveniently located in Hot Springs.

Recreational activities are pretty popular in this area as well. Canoe and tub rentals are available and if you are feeling a bit more free spirited there is always free-floating down the river which is very fun way to experience the river and stay cool.

 

 

 

Of course how could I talk about Hot Springs without mentioning the ole AP. The Appalachian Trail goes straight through downtown Main Street which is a huge reason as to why they are so hospitable to strangers. Interesting people drifting through are a mainstay. And with people stopping by your town during their hike in the AP you better believe they have grub! Hikers are hungry! The Iron Horse Tavern and the Spring Creek Tavern come highly recommended from friends.

 

With the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Pisgah National Forest literally wrapping around the entirety of the town you can bet that hiking options are seemingly endless! A hike that I am drooling over is Lovers Leap. I was going to hike it for the purpose of this article but with a heat index of 100 degrees outside I opted for another time. Lovers Leap has sensational views and I can’t wait to share my experience with you!

 

Hot Springs is only about a 30 minute drive from the Wildberry Lodge. Our 2016 summer has been hot so please bring your sun screen and stay hydrated!

 

 

Written by Kate Randall

North Carolina Arboretum 18 Jul 2016, 8:58 am

The North Carolina Arboretum has over 65 acres of charming gardens and is situated amidst one of the most botanically diverse and beautiful ecosystems in all of North America.  Strolling through their abundant selection of garden designs is a sound way to spend the day.

Take a peaceful walk through the world renowned Bonsai Exhibition Garden where you can marvel at the skill and precision is takes to create such specimens which are a true marriage of horticulture and art. The beautiful Juniper, Chinese Elm and Ginkgo really caught my eye for their elegance and grace. The exhibit is designed with a contemporary Japanese flair that temporarily transports you out of the Appalachia.

The Native Azalea Collection showcases every species of Azalea that is indigenous to the United States.

The Quilt Garden takes on a rather unique interpretation of traditional folk quilting by creating patterns with plants. The strong bond between heritage crafts and gardening can not be understated in its important history to our Southern Appalachian Region.

When I think about the North Carolina Arboretum I think about a place that excels at connecting people to plants. Brilliant efforts have been made to ensure that we have plentiful opportunities to unite ourselves with our surrounding environment. Their mission to foster connections with plants and people comes to us in the form of education, exhibition and demonstrations.

Their educational classes are quite varied. I once took a class from them learning how to correctly identify scat (animal poop) and whether or not the scat belongs to an herbivore or carnivore. Strange? Perhaps, but I do make hiking a much more interesting experience for anyone weird enough to join me.

Not interested in scat? Fine. Lucky for you the classes offered here seem endless. Over 140 classes and workshops are taught by our regions leading experts.  Dozens and dozens of classes just in the Natural History category are available nearly every day such as ‘Mushrooms of the Blue Ridge’ and ‘Birds & Climate Change’.

Other fields that may be of interest to you are Horticulture & Conservation, Fine Arts & Crafts as well as Health Wellness & Adventure. Classes tend to fill up quickly so pre-register if you are able.
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The arboretum is wrapped within Bent Creek Experimental Forest and is right on the edge of the Blue Ridge Parkway at mile post 393. 434 acres of gardens, picnic patches, biking and hiking trails are at your disposal. Even on the unusually hot 90 degree weather days we have been seeing lately you can still enjoy the grounds without becoming over-heated. Cooling off under the various wisteria covered gazebos or underneath the shaded woodland trails are options that delight any nature lover.

 

Admission is free but you do pay a $12 parking fee per vehicle. The first Tuesday of every month, the Arboretum also offers a 50% discount on personal vehicle parking ($6).
Written by Kate Randall

 

 

 

 

Joy Riding in Leicester 11 Jul 2016, 9:15 am

I have lived here in Leicester, North Carolina for 7 years now and in that time I have yet to become dulled or bored by joy riding throughout our gorgeous country side. It’s as though our winding switchbacks have magical doorways that appear and reappear in different ways leading me down exciting new roads to discover each time I set out.

My day trips through the serpentine shaped streets often surprise me with sights of meandering renegade buffalo and wild turkeys wandering around aimlessly, taking up all the road space they so desire. I get to witness beautiful hawks sweeping down into close view with a snake in talon. We even have a neighborhood peacock. Yes, a stunning peacock just randomly hanging out on the side of the road, showing off its feathers as people drive by.

The melding of the turquoise skies and the forest green landscape after a nice rain create colours so brilliant and so vibrant that it imprints itself forever in my mind.  Our sunsets simultaneously still and stir my spirit gifting me the awareness that I am forever rooted here no matter where I end up in my life.

Many travelers are rightfully drawn to the monumental views of the Blue Ridge Parkway but I have found that I get equal views on the back roads of Leicester with the welcomed addition of charm. The charming touches of our quaint little town are indeed boundless.

We have adorable cobble stone cottages and archetypal colonial style farmhouses from the 1800s that still thrive in these parts. Nearly every oncoming vehicle pleasantly waves as you pass each other by which is not only a country tradition but also small town hospitality at its best. People are so very friendly around here and usually eager to lend a helping hand.

Tail gate markets by way of curb side pop up all around too. The one time I found my self a bit lost and hungry from taking one too many coin toss turns, I was lucky enough to drive by a tail gater with loads of watermelons in the back of his truck. I had no money but he chopped up some of that sweet juicy melon for me anyway and helped guide me back to a main road. His name was Charlie and it was the best watermelon I have ever tasted.

All of these sights and countless more have shaped my experience and perception of Leicester. These stories are what make it my home. A home which I will always love and always come back to.

Written by Kate Randall

Historic Grove Park Inn 4 Jul 2016, 9:12 am

The Grove Park Inn is one of the most celebrated resorts in our history and widely recognized throughout the entire country. Ten U.S. presidents have stayed here such as Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Barack Obama while countless celebrities like Thomas Edison and Dan Akroyd have graced the hallways.

The distinctive architecture is unparalleled and seems to mirror the brilliance of the mountains. Every stone was hauled from Sunset Mountain to create a timeless intimacy between the edifice and its natural environment.

The work ethic that went into building the hotel is practically unheard of. With a crew of 400 men working 10 hour shifts 6 days a week they completed the enormous project just shy of a year. They used mules, wagons and rope to transfer building supplies and much to my astonishment even moved 10,000 pound granite boulders!

The Great Hall is a feature with some real wow factor. You enter into a dimly lit room with 24 ft. ceilings and two stupendous 14 ft. stone fireplaces. The whole room is lined with an assortment of comfortable yet stately lounging chairs creating the perfect ambiance for relaxing with a fine bourbon in hand.

I go here just to perch on Sunset Terrace and take in the beauty of the city-scape and juxtaposing mountain views. No need to book anything for a peaceful day here.

Then of course there is the spa. This 43,000 sq ft subterranean spa is certain to leave a lasting impression. The elegance and attention to detail cannot be understated. Explore the cavernous rock walls and spiraling staircases, archways and tunnels in quiet and solitude.

You can easily spend an entire day here feeling at rest and peace whether you are booking treatment or not. A day-pass at the spa treats you to their numerous mineral contrast pools with therapeutic waterfalls, fiber optic starlight and soothing underwater music. You also have relaxation rooms with whirlpools, saunas, tanning beds, eucalyptus infused steam rooms and various nooks and crannies with fireplaces to curl up to a good book and hot tea.

You can view their website for hours and pricing as they do tend to vary. Booking your spa day in advance is highly recommended.

 

History

The man behind the vision of the Grove Park Inn is Edwin Wiley Grove, also known as the “Father of Modern Asheville”. Upon launching his pharmaceutical business and the success of his elixir called the “Tasteless Chill Tonic” he went from rags to riches. Within the span of 20 years he sold 1.5 million bottles affording him a life style that he had only dreamt of.

Interestingly enough, it was his own maladies such as chronic bronchitis and exhaustion that inspired the creation of his best-selling tonic and also led to his doctor suggesting that clean mountain air would make him right as rain. Enter Asheville.

Inspiration and ambition arose from spending time in the Asheville Mountains, and that inspiration led to what we now know as the Grove Park Inn.

 

 

Written by Kate Randall