"Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower." - Albert Camus
Autumn is a great time for outdoor adventures. Although Vermont is best known for it's autumn leaves, you can leaf-peep anywhere there are trees! Check with a local State or National forest, and ask what dates they predict would be best for leaf-viewing. Around here, those dates would be between late September and mid-October. If you are planning on camping overnight, you will probably want to choose a night with a full moon as well.
Many of the best kid's camps open up in the fall for family camping, just another location to consider.
Though I did a lot of summer camping growing up, my first experience with autumn camping was in college. I went with an Outdoor Adventures group on a trip to a local National Forest. I really enjoyed the blue skies and crisp autumn air. Something about being outdoors makes the stars seem brighter and food taste better. At night, there might be dueling guitars. And of course when camping with peers there's always the possibility of sharing a tent.
Planning a camping trip may take a little more effort, but the results create valuable memories.
Ambiance Crisp air, autumn leaves, clear blue skies... later, the rising of the harvest moon. Nature will provide most of the ambiance for this party theme.
Colors: Tartan red, forest green, white wash, weathered grey
If you want to decorate your house or cabin in theme, you can find lots of ideas at Bass Pro, Cabela's, and Cracker Barrel. "Vintage Country" is the style you're looking for. Plaid is also great for a rustic theme.
Harvest Moon by Neil Young Unplugged MTV unplugged: Alanis, Natalie Merchant
Contemporary country - Dolly Parton, Garth Brooks, Reba McEntire, Josh Turner, Carrie Underwood, Brad Paisley, Rascal Flatts, Dierks Bentley, Blake Shelton and the Dixie Chicks
(A portable DVD player might come in handy)
Appalachian Movies Dukes of Hazard Deliverance Coal Miner's Daughter 28 Days (2000) Cold Mountain (2003) Nell (1994) Songcatcher (2001) Thunder Road (1958) O Brother, Where Art Thou?*O Brother, Where Art Thou?
The Waltons* - TV, DVD*
Roughing It Easy : A Unique Idea book for Camping and Cooking by Dian Thomas Backyard Roughing It Easy: Unique Recipes for Outdoor Cooking, Plus Great Ideas for Creative Family Fun-All Just Steps from Your Back Door
What to eat: Apples Over 7,500 varieties of apple are grown throughout the world. They are packed full of antioxidants, especially vitamin C for healthy skin and gums - one apple provides a quarter of your daily requirement of vitamin C. Apples also contain a form of soluble fiber called pectin that can help to lower blood cholesterol levels and keep the digestive system healthy. An apple is also a carbohydrate with a low glycemic index (GI) type. Low GI foods are digested slowly; once they are finally broken down in the intestine they are gradually absorbed into the bloodstreams as glucose, causing a gradual rise in blood sugar levels. They may help with weight control, as well as improving diabetics' long-term control of blood sugar levels.
Two coolers: a small one for snacks to open frequently, a larger one for perishables that you don't open as frequently.
Do as much prep work as possible ahead of time, because it is generally more difficult and unhygienic to prepare food at camp.
Cannabis Brownies with walnuts
**Hearty Hiking Lunch**
Apple slices & Nanny's Apple Dip (cream cheese & brown sugar) Tennessee White Bean Chili - can make in a crock pot & re-heat on site, add chopped onions and shredded Cheddar cheese Cornbread with honey & butter Brownies with walnuts Fresh Apple Cider
Snacks Trail Mix - have plenty on hand for energy while hiking
**Campfire Celebration Feast**
Appetizer: Fresh Kettle Corn made with sugar Bavarian almonds (make both fresh & serve in newsprint cones)
Roasted Turkey legs (make in crock pot before & reheat on grill) Grilled corn on the cob (boil before & re-heat on grill) Hobo potatoes (Made with pre-nuked baked potatoes) Pumpkin bread or pumpkin Dutch Babies Hot Apple Cider Hot Chocolate Hard Cider Pumpkin Ale
Tennessee Smoky Mountain Moonshine - Apple Flavor Applejack? Jack Daniels Tennessee Whisky?
Instant oatmeal - raisin, date & walnut Leftover hobo potatoes Scrambled eggs pumpkin bread? Camp coffee with milk or Hot chocolate
More camp food ideas: S'mores – cinnamon graham s'mores Turkey sandwich with marble rye, melted cheddar cheese, dried cranberries, mayo & dijon mustard – heat like a hobo pie? baked sweet potatoes Cornbread – cast iron with wild mountain honey & butter Sourdough dutch baby apple pancakes* Hot Dogs – turkey & veggie dogs White Bean Chili Turkey meatloaf panini with cranberries & Dijon mayonnaise (get a camp panini press to warm it up) Apple & Pumpkin hand pies (use camp panini press to warm it up) Crock pot turkey legs (reheat over fire at camp) Herbed hobo potatoes in foil (nuke baked potatoes ahead) Sweet potato, butter & marshmallow boats in foil (nuke sweet potatoes ahead) White bean turkey chili Foil baked squash with brown sugar Pumpkin spice latte Apple pie with cheddar cheese Pumpkin Pie apple cider donuts Stone Soup salad with apple cider vinaigrette apple cider glazed Cornish hens
Canna Pick: NYPD (New York Power Diesel) - Good for nature, sensory awareness, calming, relaxing, eating, an aphrodisiac
The New York Power Diesel is a blissful, balanced, and relaxing buzz that makes great campfire joints. It is a treat to smoke, starting with a clear, enjoyable transition and bringing a mixture of earthiness and lemon zing, over a recognizable deep note of diesel acridity. This buzz brings out a sense of calm, wonder, and sensory awareness. It can enhance discernment and pleasures. NYPD makes one notice the subtle flavors of foods, the enjoyment of the smells, sights, and sounds of the outdoors, and has potential as an aphrodisiac.
Things to do:
Outdoor fitness, trail running, parachuting, learning to interpret tracks, animals, and plants.
Hiking Trail Running, Mountain Biking, geocaching, rock climbing, backpacking...almost no end to the fun things you can do outside, also bird watching, leaf & animal track id Picnic Camping or Car Camping Truth or Dare, Spin the Bottle, Camp games, Hackey Sack & Cards I've Never Board Game Adult Version Book of Questions - ask everyone a deep question Bring acoustic guitars to strum & sing with Cuddle time in tent ?? Go country dancing
checkers The peg game from Cracker Barrel - you can find the solution online Rocking chairs on the porch
Books: Books on camp games Book of Questions Camp Guitar Songs?? Fun with Nature
Rooted in nature and proven by science, Deep Healing Woods activities offer one-of-a-kind experiences with established psychological and physiological benefits. Ground-breaking research out of Japan highlights the numerous benefits of forest bathing, also known as Shin-rin Yoku, which include enhanced physical fitness, accelerated healing, increased mental focus, and improved biological responses to reducing stress, and fighting disease.
Aerobic Guided Hike Immerse yourself in the stunning surrounds of Blackberry Farm’s ample trails. Whatever the season, our knowledgeable guides will show you the boundless beauty of the Appalachian foothills.
Guided Trail Running Scientific studies show that running in a wooded, natural environment boosts physical and mental performance, as well as creates less stress on the knees and ankles. So get off the treadmill and enjoy the enhanced benefit of exercising with Mother Nature.
Earthfit Endurance Hike This high-intensity workout is ideal for any fitness level.Designed for optimal body conditioning and recovery, this activity includes a pre-workout stretching session to warm the muscles and promote circulation. A fast-paced hike encourages cardiovascular strength and endurance. At the conclusion of the physical exertion stage, guests are led in a guided stretch and meditation session to improve body recovery and mental restoration.
Earthfit Forest Run The same structure and numerous benefits of EarthFit Endurance Hike, only tailored for those that love to run.
Deep Healing Woods Yoga Yoga means ‘union’ and when practiced outdoors, a greater sense of connecting with the universe can be evoked. Many of yoga’s asanas (postures) reflect animals and nature. Allow the breeze to expand your breathing, the warm sun to deepen your pose making muscles more playable, and let a ladybug invite you to focus on something small and still. Enjoy a sense of harmony, timelessness and union with Mother Nature.
Deep Healing Woods Meditation For centuries, monks the world over have taken to the forest to elevate their meditation practice and become one with the universe. Drawing upon this ancient wisdom, we too, take you to the deep healing woods to clear your mind, calm your soul, and heighten your awareness. Discover how going within can provide an innate sense of connection with oneself and all living things.
Geocaching Choose an adventurous way to discover the property with Geocaching, a contemporary treasure hunt which uses a Global Positioning System (GPS) to find specific locations of hidden objects. Our Letterboxing version has a romantic history dating from the 1850s in Dartmoor, England, and will direct you through a course by cart paths and familiar landmarks. Or if you prefer something a little more challenging and rugged, try our GeocachingTrails version on Blackberry’s beautiful hiking trails.
Spa: Clean up at the spa at Blackberry Farm
A house in the country, with giant claw foot tubs and fresh country air. Old-fashioned and natural spa treatments using seasonal elements: apples, pears, pumpkins, and warming autumn spices like ginger and cardamom. Country-style spa treatments for sun-damaged skin and hard working hands and feet
Letting Go Ritual As evenings cool and the signs of autumn begin to usher in, spiced scents of the season fill the air. In preparation for colder months we treat the skin to a private bath in a claw foot tub with a bouquet of ginger and autumn spices, called Little Moon's "Letting Go." A cool shower afterwards will wash away toxins eliminated through the skin. Next, a body wrap with the remarkable anti-itch lotion, Letting Go Lotion with ginger and warming spices. You will be wrapped in blankets as you feel the warmth helping you let go of all that is unwanted. Then, you are unwrapped, and the spine is warmed up by being rubbed with a piece of ginger soaked in apple cider vinegar. Next, a full-body massage with warmed oil steeped with ginger. Heat packs, flannel sheets, hot stones and warm towels, heated tables and a fireplace ensure cozy warmth. Finish your de-tox with a cup of ginger tea. Emerge from this warm aromatic experience with a renewed sense of calm and well-being.
Letting Go is a warming ginger detoxifying bath, remarkably effective for relieving symptoms of cold & flu, sore muscles, chills, eczema, itching, overindulgence, depression, headaches, tension. Especially effective for cleansing during fasts and detoxes, Ginger has a miraculous capacity for stimulating circulation & drawing toxins out of the body through the skin. It also acts as an anti-inflammatory and analgesic pain-reliever. The 100% pure essential oils in this healing bath are traditionally known to cleanse and comfort the body, and support the release of emotional as well as physical ailments. Letting Go contains a unique blend of salts especially high in iron and trace minerals, organic ginger, and other pure essentials oils.
APPLES Yankee Candle apple cider candle or tarts Facial with Mychelle apple collection, back facial
Apple Mani-Pedi or Carmel apple Gigi Apple Spice paraffin hand dip Farm House Products: Backcountry Caramel Body Milk Lotion Backcountry Caramel Body Milk Travel Lotion Apple Cinnamon tea
Facial with Mychelle pumpkin collection/ back facial Pumpkin's healing properties are making it the new it ingredient in beauty treatments. This seasonal facial is designed to restore the proper level of epidermal moisture for a flawless matte, even-toned and oil-free complexion. Active ingredients including pumpkin enzymes, mineral salts and beta carotene work to ensure a constant flow of moisture to the skin leaving you evenly balanced and radiant. Pumpkin enzymatic therapy speeds the natural exfoliation process, unveiling smoother, softer, more refined skin. Brings new radiance to all skin types.
Pumpkin spice mani-pedi Ginger foot scrub & masque Splendid Dirt - Nutrient Mud Mask with Organic Pumpkin Puree Pumpkin Spice Tea or Chai or Latte
Inspiration Destination: Gatlinburg, TN, Smoky Mountain National Park, Lodge Cookware, Picking, Bluegrass Music, Clogging, Apple Festivals, hiking trails, Laurel Falls, shopping at The Village Shops. For beautiful views, put on your walking shoes and head along the 5 mile walk up to the Clingmans Dome or take a ride on the Gatlinburg Sky Lift, USA Raft, Sweet Fanny Adams Theatre...Dollywood? (nearby) Dolly Parton music, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Nashville, Charlotte NC, Atlanta GA
Apple Festivals: Hillcrest Orchards - Apple Pickin' Jubilee Ellijay, Georgia The Brushy Mountain Apple Festival North Wilkesboro, North Carolina Unicoi County Apple Festival Erwin, Tennessee Apple Harvest Festival at Carter Mountain Orchard Charlottesville, Virginia Douthat State Park Apple Day - A Celebration of Appalachian Heritage* Millboro, Virginia Graves Mountain Apple Harvest Festival* Syria, Virginia
corn mazes, hayrides, apple butter, apple cider, apple donuts, apple pie, campfire cooking, watching apple butter and Brunswick Stew being cooked over an open fire, hayrides, games, traditional Appalachian artisan and craft demonstrations, bluegrass music, clogging, horseback riding, farm animals, and apple picking
Road Trip: Cherohala Skyway, Tennessee and North Carolina
From National Geographic's Drives of a Lifetime Series
Crossing the Tennessee–North Carolina border and the crest of the Great Smoky Mountains, this 42-mile long byway climbs to a mile above sea level. It winds through forests of hardwoods and evergreens on the way from Tellico Plains, Tennessee, to Robbinsville, North Carolina.
The Cherohala Skyway links two small towns and follows a mile high ridge in the Unicoi Mountains. Designated a National Scenic Byway shortly after it opened in 1996, the skyway is the costliest road in North Carolina. It took more than three decades and $100 million to build, but many say the views along the route are worth it. You can complete the drive in as little as two to three hours, but take your time. This route was built for sightseeing. The highway clings to four peaks over 5,000 feet in elevation and nine peaks above 4,000 feet, offering—when the often-fickle weather permits—amazing views of mountains, foliage, and waterfalls. The Cherohala Skyway climbs high into the Smoky Mountain air, ascending from an elevation of just over 930 feet near Tellico Plains to 5,390 feet at the road's highest point, the Santeetlah Overlook. Nearly half of the elevation change comes in the ten-mile stretch after Tennessee–North Carolina state line.
Start in Tellico Plains
In the quiet town of Tellico Plains, stop at the Cherohala Skyway Visitor Center for maps and information. Before you leave Tellico Plains, top off your tank and pack a picnic—you'll find no gas stations or restaurants on this route.
Cherokee National Forest
You'll be passing through Cherokee National Forest, which offers several recreational opportunities. Tennessee's only national forest, Cherokee contains more than 600 miles of hiking trails, including a section of the famous Appalachian National Scenic Trail. Once devastated by logging but protected since 1911, the woodlands are home to 262 species of birds, 154 species of fish, 55 species of amphibians and reptiles, and 43 species of mammals.
Bald River Falls
At the start of the drive you'll be following the Tellico River through mixed forest. This section of the Tellico is popular with trout fishermen and white-water enthusiasts. After five miles, take a six-mile side trip on State Route 210 to see 100-foot Bald River Falls. Enjoy a picnic at the falls or find your own private spot somewhere along the adjacent hiking trails. Be advised that parking at the falls is limited, but some additional parking can be found at the campsite about a quarter mile up the road.
Indian Boundary Campground
On Cty. Rd. 165 the scenery gets better with every mile. Thirteen miles from Tellico Plains is the turn to the Cherokee National Forest's Indian Boundary Campground, on Boundary Lake. The campground is set among hardwoods and pine and offers different types of camping, from sites with electrical hookups and a modern bathhouse to rustic sites with outdoor showers and fire rings.
Nantahala National Forest
Not far beyond the Indian Boundary Campground, you enter North Carolina, where the highway name changes to N.C. 143. Here you enter the Nantahala National Forest. Recreational opportunities abound, from hiking, fishing, and camping to white-water rafting on the Nantahala River. Commerical outfitters offer a variety of guided water activities.
The road continues to rise, with panoramas of the Great Smokies from scenic overlooks along the way. The high point is the picnic spot at 5,390-foot Santeetlah Overlook. From the overlook, travelers can gaze across mountaintops rolling for seven miles to the Tennessee state line. The panorama takes in the Appalachian Mountains and the Snowbird, Slickrock, and Joyce Kilmer forests. Even the distant mountains of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park are visible from here.
Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest
Perhaps the most famous spot along the skyway is Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest. This magnificent woodland honors the poet who wrote the well-known line, "I think that I shall never see a poem lovely as a tree." After you descend through Shute Cove and Hooper Cove, the road intersects with N.C. 134, which takes you on a two-mile side trip to the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest. Among the lovely trees are 400-year-old stands of poplar and hemlock. The old-growth forest erupts in color every fall, reportedly the skyway's busiest season, but even then this scenic road is far less traveled than the nearby Blue Ridge Parkway.
The best times to drive the skyway are spring through fall. There are numerous photo overlooks and picnic areas along the route. The only services are Forest Service campgrounds.