First Signs of Winter in Western NC
Around 1:30 Sunday afternoon, Britt called to tell me there was snow on the peaks east of Asheville. I grabbed my gear and headed up the Blue Ridge Parkway. I figured I'd go to Mt. Mitchell but when I got to Craggy Gardens I saw this and decided this was what I was chasing. It was beautiful. It turned out to not be snow, but thick layers of frozen fog that had attached itself to the trees as it passed. Layers upon layers had frosted the tips of the mountains around Craggy Gardens.
It was clear when I arrived but more fog blew in when I got near the top of Craggy Pinnacle. The wind was just relentless but thankfully I had my face mask, hat and gloves in my camera bag. Just for reference, the temperature at the parking lot of Craggy Gardens was 24 degrees Fahrenheit. Which means the temperature with windchill was probably in the mid teens on top of Craggy Pinnacle.
It was quite an awesome hike. I've posted pictures below to illustrate it.
View of Craggy Pinnacle from near the parking lot at Craggy Gardens:
Starting the hike up Craggy Pinnacle:
More fog and clouds on the way:
There is the pinnacle. Fog and clouds beat me to it:
The view from atop Craggy Pinnacle. Fog and clouds were moving fast:
Looking down from Craggy Pinnacle at Craggy Gardens. Totally frosty and foggy:
Thanks to the heads up from Britt, my first winter hike of the season turned out to be excellent!
Here's to more - JD
Keywords: Asheville, Blue Ridge Mountains, NC, North Carolina, Pisgah National Forest, Winter, blue ridge parkway, craggy gardens, craggy pinnacle, trees
Hey, great pictures. That ice that you see is called rime ice (also known as hoarfrost, but I think technically that is something different). Looking forward to more photos!
Thanks so much, Mark! I was shocked when I got up there and saw what it actually was. Really cool stuff. I'd welcome another weather event like it anytime!
Beautiful images, Johnny. The last time I was at Craggy Gardens, the fog was so thick you couldn't see anything. It cool to see what there is to be seen after a fog in cold weather.
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