Monday, June 26, 2017

Black Balsam Picnic

Every now and then Matt and I try to capitalize on daycare hours by playing hooky from work and going on a day date. We spent our last day date in Asheville and loved it so much that we almost did it again but changed the plans last minute to picnic on my favorite mountain -- Black Balsam Knob. It was truly one of our favorite things we've ever done together.
 
The drive was about 3 hours away so we dropped the kids off at school super early, grabbed some coffee and hit the road. It was so nice to spend time together in the car without the constant interruptions and requests from the backseat. We arrived to the trail head off the Blue Ridge Parkway right around 10:30 am, stuffed our backpacks and set off for the 3 mile hike.
I love this hike so much and have camped along this trail in several places. The first half mile of the hike takes you through the Enchanted Forest -- an endless pine forest with a gorgeous dense pine canopy. See all those trees?! They open up to the most amazing treeless mountains.
As you climb the mountain you can feel the air thinning, the temperature dropping and the wind gusts picking up. It is exhilarating -- truly. Nothing kicks my endorphins into overdrive like climbing a mountain with spectacular views. 
Once you get through the grassy and rocky mountain meadows you reach the first knob. From there we continued on another half mile or so on the Art Loeb Trail to get to Black Balsam.
Alas, we made it to the peak...
 Views from the summit of Black Balsam Knob!
At 6,214 feet, Black Balsam Knob is the 23rd highest of the 40 mountains in North Carolina.
It was wild how quickly the clouds would pass through us. We could feel them sweep over the mountain as the temperature would drop a good 15 - 20 degrees each time. It was incredible.

Right before his ascent to the top of this rock, Matt made sure to remind me that this is exactly how every good episode of Dateline begins.
After exploring the mountain for a bit we decided to set up camp with a little picnic. To avoid the wind we descended down the side of the mountain a little bit to the most perfect grassy spot.
At 6,000 feet we enjoyed prosecco and a charcuterie board on the side of  a mountain. I swear it felt like a date right out of The Bachelor, minus the rose, Chris Harrison...and the awkwardness. It could not have been more perfect.
This lunch could not have been easier thanks to Trader Joe's pre-made snack packs of cheeses and meats!
 The spectacular view from our picnic spot! I think I must have said "I can't believe we are here" at least 348462 times. 
After a few hours on the mountain it was time to hike back to reality.
And because I'm a huge dork I dropped all of our photos and video snaps into an iMovie to have forever!
Photobucket

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14 comments:

  1. Looks like a great hike; I'll have to check it out. We live a couple hours from the blue ridge mountains as well and love zipping over for a hike as well!

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  2. Love that you all take these Day dates from time to time!! That picnic looks delicious!!

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  3. That video was so sweet! You're inspiring me to keep track of my photos/videos better. I keep thinking at the end of each day I really need to download my IG story and keep it and I never do. Maybe this is a good way to do it! :)

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  4. Holy cow, what an absolutely gorgeous view! That's so neat that the clouds passed right around you!!

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  5. Yay for dating your husband! Love the sweet video, looks like y'all had a great time. Would you be able to share your backpack info please? I love that it holds all your picnic needs!

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  6. What a beautiful view. We're going on vacation this summer to the mountains. I've never been before, and after seeing these amazing pictures, I'm even more excited!

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  7. Lol it does as perfect as a date from The Bachelor! I'm so glad that you were able to have such a romantic day!

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  8. This looked like such a cute date! (love the bachelor reference haha) xo

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  9. Gorgeous view!! I've only ever been to the Biltmore in Asheville, but I think I need to go back to explore the mountains!!

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  10. Sounds like an awesome day! I need to do this with my husband- drop the tot at school & have a day date!!

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  11. How fun! I love that y'all did this. Will have to visit this one next time we're up that way!!!

    xx, McKenzie // http://somethinsouthernblog.com/

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  12. What a perfect day! You guys are the perfect example of "dating your spouse" and I just love it! Such a great example for Caroline and Thomas!

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  13. AMAZING!!!! I love your day dates sweet friend - this is perfect! x

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  14. I wanna be like y'all when I grow up. SO AWESOME that y'all do date nights / day dates. Inspiring! Now I need to get my butt in gear to do the same!

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