by Katherine Scott Crawford
There is nothing quite like spring in the mountains. Take a walk through any neighborhood in Brevard and you’ll see daffodils, crocuses, and tulips in bloom, and trees bursting from pink buds to new-green leaves. Roll your car window down on a cruise through town, and you’ll hear the air alive with birdsong, the whirr of bike wheels, and the voices of neighbors. Winter is cozy, but spring is the season when we all seem to emerge—even the bunnies.
Our surrounding state and national forests hold a unique beauty during the springtime. There is a transition in the forest. April, especially, is the perfect time to explore—to find a great trail, and to see what you can see. In early spring, the forest isn’t yet thick with new growth. A spring hike often allows for temperate weather along with expansive, rare views of waterfalls and ridgelines: views which often disappear after new leaves fill in.
Many hikes in spring start with fleece and end in short-sleeves. (Always, bring plenty of water and a rain jacket.) On weekdays, there is a pretty good chance you might be out on the trail all by your lonesome. Though this will change as the weather warms and summer comes, in spring you may be accompanied solely by the wildflowers. Keep an eye out for trillium, iris, jack-in-the-pulpit, lady slippers, and more.
Brevard is quite literally surrounded by fabulous forests and parks. Dupont State Forest, Gorges State Park, the new Headwaters State Forest, and the Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests offer a seemingly endless number of trails upon which to stroll or hike. If you’re in town for the season, you have plenty of time to take to the high country. But if you’re here only for a day or a weekend—perhaps on a property-scouting or house-buying trip—a walk closer to town, on an easily accessible trail in the Pisgah National Forest may be an order.
Only have 30 to 45 minutes for a quick walk in the woods? Or perhaps you’ve children or grandchildren in tow, and need a hike suited to little legs? Give the Andy Cove Nature Trail a go. Located just behind the Pisgah Ranger Station, the trail can take as little as 20 minutes or as long as an hour, depending on how many rocks, sticks, birds, trees, and flowers you’d like to observe. Five minutes in, you’ll feel enveloped by the forest, the gurgling creek your musical accompaniment. Kids and adults alike will love the swinging bridge. After, pop into the Ranger Station for a quick film on the area’s ecology, the perfect postcard to send home, or a word with a friendly forest ranger about where to go next. Also: the public bathrooms at the Ranger Station are nice and clean.
Have more time? Extend your hike from the Nature Trail by forking towards the Exercise Trail. You’ll cross Hwy 276, so be sure to be aware of passing cars and bikes. Take the bridge over the Davidson River, keeping an eye out for the silvery flash of an angler’s line as he or she casts across the glistening water. Follow the Exercise Trail until it peters out into the North Slope Trail at the western edge of the Davidson River Campground.
It’s easy to hike an out-and-back on the Exercise Trail, but if you want to follow the river deeper into the forest, stay on the North Slope Trail as it meanders along beside the river, becoming the remains of an old road. The trail will empty out into a meadow, where it ends. Do a Julie Andrews slow twirl, admire the ridgelines ringing the meadow, the white blooms on the dogwoods among the evergreens in the forest, and the cold, musical rush of the river at your side. Head back the way you came.
Maps of local trails are readily available at the Pisgah Ranger Station, Highland Books in downtown Brevard, and at bike shops like The Hub and Sycamore Cycles. When you’re ready for a new adventure, study up, and hike further. But if you want a sweet weekday hike, any trail you take in lower Pisgah will make for a lovely little out-and-back along a path sure to be filled with nature’s surprises.
Trails like these give a hiker just a taste of what it’s like to make Brevard home. The forests offer boundless gifts, waiting for you. Why not go take a hike?
The days are longer, the daffodils are bobbing their buttercup-yellow heads, and the forest is alight in new growth. Though we still need our jackets in the mornings and evenings (we are, after all, mountain-dwellers), Spring has officially sprung in Transylvania County!
Brevard and surrounding Transylvania County never seem to slow down: no matter the season, there’s always something on the local calendar guaranteed to appeal to young and old, and anyone in between. April seems to be our mountain town’s door-opener season. This month, summer folks and vacationers begin to trickle into town, taking advantage of the cultural, educational, and recreational opportunities right alongside the locals. By May, it feels as if Brevard doubles in size.
Brevard and Transylvania County offer a welcome as wide-open as our Spring-green mountains. There is room enough for everyone … and ever so much to do.
Here’s a look at what’s happening this month:
Brevard is rich year-round in cultural and recreational opportunities, and there are far too many to list. To put it simply, Transylvania County is a happening place in Spring, with something fun to do for everyone. Even a simple walk in the greening forest, a waterfall hike, an early dinner downtown or a stroll through the local library remind us why we’ve chosen to make our homes in this unique part of the world.
Welcome to April in Brevard!
Mortgage rates posted more drops this week, lowering the borrowing costs of potential home shoppers and refinancers. Rates are now at a nine-month low, which helped boost mortgage applications more than 20 percent this week.
“Lower mortgage rates combined with continued income growth and lower energy prices are all positive indicators for consumers that should lead to a firming of home sales,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.
Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending Jan. 10:
Maureen “Mo” Mitchell has joined the sales team at Fisher Realty. A native of Kentucky, Mo studied business at the University of Kentucky. She began her career as Operations Manager with E.F. Hutton in Lexington, KY. Furthering her career Mo received training on Wall Street with industry leaders Jamie Diamon and Sandy Weil and was Series 7 registered in 1986. Mo left the brokerage industry in 1990 to raise her daughter.
Mo was an active civic volunteer in Kentucky, serving on the Alliance of the Speed Museum board, the American Lung Association board, and the POA board of the Lake Nolin Community. Mo chaired the Women’s Initiative for the Louisville United Way and was asked to speak at the national Alexis de Tocqueville meeting to assist other communities with a model for women’s giving. She has also chaired fund raising initiatives for Louisville Collegiate School and the Oxmoor Steeplechase.
After relocating to Lake Toxaway in 2007, Mo spent four years of study with Dr. Jean Houston, an advisor to NASA and the UN, in her courses, “Social Artistry and The Possible Human”. Mo served as nomination and technology chair on the Lake Toxaway Community Association board and is now happy to have the opportunity to pursue her love of real estate with the Fisher family of brokers.
Principal Broker Art Fisher remarked, “We are delighted to have Mo with us at Fisher Realty. Her background, her enthusiasm, and her love of helping people will be great assets in serving her clients.”
Mo will be in the Sapphire/Lake Toxaway office of Fisher Realty with Marsha Bricker as Broker-In-Charge. The office is located at 17527 Rosman Highway in Sapphire. Mo invites her friends to visit her there or call her at 828-966-9290.