Event Watch: Viewing the Total Solar Eclipse from the Mountains of Asheville
Posted On Wednesday, August 09, 2017
Experiencing the Total Solar Eclipse from Asheville, NC
Earlier this year, we wrote about a historical event coming this month, and if you haven't begun planning for your trip to WNC to experience it, now is the time! On August 21st, at approximately 2:00 PM, a complete solar eclipse will be visible from any number of vantage points in the Asheville area. An eclipse of this nature hasn't been visible in the United States since 1776, and the totality path crosses directly over our beautiful neck of the woods. This is not an event to miss, and to help you plan for your adventure, we've highlighted three spots that are just perfect for experiencing the view.
Where to See It
There are dozens of great summit hikes, lakes, and Parkway lookout points from which to view the eclipse, and talking to a local about some of the best ones is always a great idea. Below are three that we recommend checking out!
Blue Ridge Parkway
The Parkway will be very busy on the 21st, so it's a good idea to get there early to ensure parking. The southern part of the Parkway will be immersed in darkness during the peak of the eclipse, so anywhere from Looking Glass Rock overlook to the far end near Cherokee is a good bet. We recommend Looking Glass Rock overlook for both the namesake view, and the wide open sky above the viewing area!
Devil's Courthouse is a beloved area hike on any day of the year, but on August 21st it offers hikers a chance to complete an amazing summit hike and receive the powerful reward of a full on view of the eclipse. Begin at milepost 422.4 on the Blue Ridge Parkway - a short but intense 1/2 mile climb culminates in incredible long range panoramic mountain views.
Looking Glass Rock
Accessing Looking Glass Rock from the Brevard side makes this hike accessible to folks of all skill level. The trail head is located off the Forest Heritage Scenic Byway, and a nice 3 mile walk takes you to the peak. This hike can be a bit crowded, and likely more so during the event, so we recommend heading there early with a picnic and plans to kick back and enjoy the view.
Where to Stay
Staying local is key to fully enjoying an event like this; staying in your own home away from home rather than a hotel makes the experience even better! Carolina Mornings has dozens of stunning vacation rentals, many of which boast their own remarkable views from the comfort of a hot tub, a deck, or a patio.
One such home, Montagne Vue, is a gorgeous 3 bedroom mountaintop home situated on 19 private acres. The outdoor entertaining area is the perfect spot to kick up your heels midday to enjoy the show. Best of all, Montagne Vue is pet friendly... so your four legged best friend can be a part of history too!
Another fantastic option is Sunset Peaks - one of the newest additions to the Carolina Mornings Portfolio! With three bedrooms, a wrap around deck, and year-round, long-range mountain views, Sunset Peaks is an excellent home-base for an event such as this.
To begin planning your trip to the mountains, contact Carolina Mornings at (855) 398-0712. A professional Vacation Planner will assist you in lining up your area accommodations. Be sure to ask about our Mountain Discovery Pass - a gift included with every Carolina Mornings reservation!
By: Dana Carrico