It was time for our annual Autumn trip up into the Blue Ridge Mountains to view the seasonal colors. We took a more varied route this year. Like last year the weather started up rainy and cloudy, but eventually cleared out in the afternoon.
First we traveled up to Caesar's Head State Park. On the way up the escarpment, we stopped at the Bald Rock overlook. There I made my first multi-shot panoramic image. The next stop was Caesar's Head. We were blessed with a small rainbow as a cloud was cresting the escarpment very close to the upper observation point.
Next we continued up US Highway 276 into Brevard, NC and the Pisgah National Forest. There we stopped at Looking Glass Falls and Sliding Rock. The overcast sky provided nice, diffused light for the waterfalls which prevents harsh reflections from the water and also helps make the colors more pronounced.
We then travelled along the Blue Ridge Parkway toward the south for a little while before turning around and traveling back toward Asheville, NC. The upper elevations at the southern portions of the parkway were clouded over. We even when through a cloud in one of the tunnels which was quite unnusual to see. There were spots of clear skies that afforded dramatic views of the valleys, ridges and the covering cloud banks.
Finally, we stopped at Chimney Rock. The elevator was out of order so everyone had to take the stairs up. Mom and I only made it to the first overlook landing. Dad did manage to make it up to the top though. While at the landing we had a great view that was framed nicely by the overhanging ledge and the mountain's shadow below use. The trees in the Chimney Rock area had not yet started to change colors. So, the moutains, valleys and ridges were all still quite green in contrast to the the Asheville and Parkway areas.May 28, 2009 Note: Added a color corrected version of Looking Glass Falls in Autumn here.