North Carolina Mountain Birds: American Redstart

Bird with black head and orange chest perched observantly on a tree branch

We’ve chosen a decidedly American bird for our July 2016 pick in our 12 Months of Birding at the Inn blog series: The American Redstart. Not only does this feathered fellow have “American” in its name, but you can find it in nearly every state in the continental U.S. during the summer or migration period in spring and fall.

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100 Years of NC State Parks: Mt. Mitchell State Park

Mt Mitchell Observation Platform

The year 2016 is the 100th anniversary of the North Carolina State Park System and NC State Parks are celebrating in a big way with events throughout the year. There are nine state parks in the mountains of western North Carolina, and we’re fortunate to have four nearby, which we’ll profile for the next four months. This month, we take a look at Mount Mitchell State Park.

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North Carolina Mountain Birds: Acadian Flycatcher

acadian flycatcher wiki commons

Arriving during spring migration and hanging out all summer long in parts of Pisgah National Forest is the Acadian Flycatcher, our June 2016 pick in our 12 Months of Birding at the Inn blog series. If you book one of our rooms in the Deck House, you may see one of these enchanting little birds making the acrobatic feat of catching insects while flying look easy.

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Explore Black Mountain’s Foodie Scene with a Food Tour

creative mountain food tours

One thing that sets Black Mountain apart from other small towns in western North Carolina is the depth of fantastic local restaurants. Of course, there’s farm-to-table, but also gastropubs, pizza joints, casual fine dining, several restaurants with international menus, and more. With so many choices, a great way for foodies to expand their horizons is through a guided tour by Creative Mountain Food Tours.

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Blue Ridge Parkway Hike: Graveyard Fields and Its Waterfalls

Graveyard Fields Boardwalk 1 June 2016

If you’re looking for a super-scenic day trip hike while staying with us here at Inn on Mill Creek near Asheville, NC, consider a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway to Graveyard Fields. Is it a graveyard? Nope. Is it a field? You could say that… but it’s so much more. Let’s explore.

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North Carolina Mountain Birds: Swainson’s Thrush

Close up of a medium sized brown bird with speckled chest facing sideways on a branch in the woods

In the spring, we see lots of migratory birds in western North Carolina — some hang around for the spring and summer, while others are just passing through on their way to another destination. One of those “just passing through” birds is our May 2016 pick in our 12 Months of Birding at the Inn blog series: the Swainson’s Thrush.

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Repairs to Point Lookout Trail Begin May 31, 2016

point lookout trail spring

The greenway closest to the Inn on Mill Creek, Point Lookout Trail, is getting some much-needed repairs soon! This means that the trail will be closed during the summer of 2016, but the work being done will provide long-term benefits, which is great news because this is a favorite trail for our guests.

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Spring Hike: Craggy Gardens on the Blue Ridge Parkway

Craggy Gardens Trail 01 050916

Craggy Gardens is a section of the North Carolina mountains accessible via the Blue Ridge Parkway, north of Asheville. It has excellent hiking trails, a picnic area, cool mountaintop balds with wild blueberry bushes and dramatic mountain vistas. Read on to see what we saw on our hike of the Craggy Gardens Trail in early May! Hint: Wildflowers galore and other cool stuff that makes us love love love nature.

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