Adventure Park Opens 8 Miles of Emerald Outback Trails

BEECH MOUNTAIN, N.C. – Avid mountain bikers and hikers now have a superb new venue in Western North Carolina.

The Beech Mountain Adventure Trail Park officially opened its Emerald Outback section May 1. The eight-plus miles of Emerald Outback trails range in elevation from
4,700-5,400 feet, giving the park the distinction of being among the highest such venues on the East Coast.

There’s a nice combination of single track, double track and gravel road trails traversing the mountaintop, all accessible from a trail head in the town of Beech Mountain.

Adventure-Trail-Park CREDIT-Kristian-Jackson

The Emerald Outback is the first phase of the Beech Mountain Adventure Trail Park, which will grow to three phases encompassing 25 miles of trails. It was designed by
mountain bikers, hikers and trail runners to meet the recreational demands of serious outdoor enthusiasts.

Credit for building the park goes to Beech Mountain Parks and Recreation Department. Fitness and wellness coordinator Daniel Scagnelli conceived the idea in 2009, and spearheaded an impressive trail-building effort of mostly volunteer labor.

Workers used hand tools and hand-held power tools. Heavy machinery was not involved. The process reclaimed a few abandoned trails and blended them into a cohesive network of trails showcasing unique topography atop Beech Mountain.

“We actually routed one trail over a former ski slope. It’s fairly flat with moderate elevation change,” Scagnelli said. “Then we have the typical rocky, rooty East Coast
mountain biking single track.

“There are also untouched woods with small waterfalls and creeks rushing by, plus phenomenal mountain vistas and overlooks throughout. Whether you’re in the Oz Forest or out on Overlook Loop, you have 100-mile views around. The terrain is rolling and changes well. There’s not a whole lot of climbing and you’re always surrounded by something beautiful.”

Signage and the official trail head were installed this spring for the Adventure Trail Park, which is free and open to the public seven days a week.

“People want outdoor experiences on Beech Mountain,” said Scagnelli, “and the Emerald Outback has the potential to be the trademark trail system for this town.”

For trail park information, call (828) 387-3003, or visit: www.BeechRecreation.org.

Click here to view the Emerald Outback Trail map.

Annual Festivals

An Appalachian Summer Festival: late June to late July

App-Sign

Regarded as one of the country’s leading regional arts festivals, An Appalachian Summer Festival is held each summer on and around the Appalachian State University campus in Boone, North Carolina. For nearly a decade, the Southeast Tourism Society has named the family-oriented festival one of the “Top Twenty Events in the Southeast.” The multi- and inter-disciplinary festival incorporates music, theatre, dance, film and visual arts.
1.800.841.ARTS / www.appsummer.org


47th Annual Roasting of the Hog: Independence Weekend

On the Saturday closest to Independence Day, the Town of Beech Mountain, the Beech Mountain Volunteer Fire Department and the Beech Mountain Chamber of Commerce host the 47th Annual Roasting of the Hog. The family-centered event features fresh-cook barbecue pork and turkey, musical entertainment, children’s activities and a nighttime fireworks display. Local firefighters cook the food, which backed by decades of perfecting the seasonings and charcoal blends, is said to result in the best barbeque in the High Country. The event starts at 6 PM and fireworks go off at dark.
828.387.9283 / beechmountainchamber.com


Mile High Fourth of July

Mile High Fourth Festivals page1

The resort towns of Banner Elk and Beech Mountain combine for a sizzlin' cool four-day celebration of our nation's independence. The Mile High Fourth is always centered around July 4th and includes fireworks above the summit of Beech Mountain, the afore-mentioned hog roast, live music, scenic chairlift rides, Banner Elk's legendary Fourth of July Parade and Party in the Park, and much more. Other events include summer theater at Lees-McRae College and family activities hosted by the Beech Mountain Rec Center. 800.468.5506 / MileHighFourth.com


Grandfather Mountain Highland Games: mid July

Since 1956, the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games and Gathering of Scottish Clans has been held each summer at MacRae Meadows on beautiful Grandfather Mountain, near Linville, North Carolina. Fostering and restoring interest in traditional Scottish activities, the event features games, athletic competitions, dancing, piping, drumming, sheep-herding and Celtic entertainment. Dressed in their distinctive tartans, more than a hundred clans participate in Raising the Clans and the Parade of Tartans. Event is always held the second full weekend in July.
www.gmhg.org


MusicFest n' Sugar Grove: mid July

Music-Jam

Held on the site of the Doc Watson Museum at the Historic Cove Creek High School in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, the annual MusicFest ‘n Sugar Grove celebrates the music of Doc Watson and friends. In addition to the traditional and bluegrass music in the main stage shows, MusicFest presents additional acts on a solar-powered stage, plus more players indoors. Other features include a songwriters’ showcase and instrument workshops led by festival performers. The event is usually held on the second Friday and Saturday in July.
828.297.2200 / www.covecreek.net


Crafts on the Green: first Saturday in August

The Annual Crafts on the Green, held each year on the first Saturday in August, features scores of vendors from throughout the mountain region. The quality art and crafts to be displayed and sold include fine jewelry, wood turnings, photography, paintings, pottery and more. Crafts on the Green is held at Gazebo Park next to Fred’s General Mercantile on top  of Beech Mountain, North Carolina. Food is available and there will be musical entertainment and a magic show for children.
828.387.4838 / beechmountainchamber.com


Mile-High Kite Festival: Labor Day Weekend

Kites

The Mile High Kite Festival, held Saturday and Sunday each Labor Day weekend features vendors, music and contests for the best decorated, smallest and largest kites. Kite-flying demonstrations are given by the Richmond (Virginia) Air Force Kite Club and the Wings Across Carolina Kiting and Okra Society of Charlotte. The first 150 children (12 and under) each day receive free kites to decorate and fly. Visitors can buy kites at the event or bring their own. The festival takes place in the kite field at the Famous Brick Oven Pizzeria. Participants get a certificate that proclaims "I flew a kite a mile high on Beech Mountain."
828.387.9283 / beechmountainchamber.com


Tweetsie Ghost Train Halloween Festival: entire month of October

There’s safe and scary Halloween fun for all ages at the Tweetsie Ghost Train™ Halloween Festival at Tweetsie Railroad, located between Blowing Rock and Boone, North Carolina. The Halloween-themed attractions include the Haunted House, Freaky Forest and trick-or-treating. Advanced tickets are required for this annual event, held Friday and Saturday nights in October, and the event frequently sells out.
800.526.5740 / www.tweetsie.com/


Autumn at Oz: second weekend in September

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Walk the Yellow Brick Road and meet Dorothy, Tin Man, Lion, Scarecrow, Wizard, Munchkins and Witches. Visit Auntie Em’s farm and hide from the tornado in the basement as the top of Beech magically becomes the fabled Land of Oz. There is fun, food, music, hay rides and memorabilia. Tickets are $35 and go on sale in mid-summer, with children 2 years and under admitted free.
800.514.3849LandOfOzNC.com


Woolly Worm Festival: third weekend in October

The Woolly Worm Festival, held the third weekend in October, draws some 20,000 people, more than a hundred vendors, a thousand worm trainers, and national media to Banner Elk, North Carolina. The attraction is the woolly worm, which mountain lore credits with the ability to predict winter weather. It is believed that if the worm has more brown on its body than black, the winter will be mild; if more black than brown, the winter will be harsh. Wooly Worm followers claim 85 percent accuracy over the last two decades.
www.woollyworm.com


Choose and Cut Festival: late November through Christmas Eve

Every year, visitors trek to the North Carolina High Country to choose the perfect Christmas tree from among the acres of beautiful Fraser firs growing on tree farms throughout the region. They buy fresh garlands, shop for ornaments and locally crafted holiday gifts and enjoy old-fashioned wintertime activities. Some farms offer hayrides, bonfires or petting zoos, or have craft shops and gift shops on the premises. Many tree-growers partner with inns, cabins and hotels to provide overnight packages. The Choose and Cut Festival is in full swing from the Friday after Thanksgiving through Christmas Eve.
www.chooseandcutfestival.com

Lodging & Dining Specials Now Available

Where to Stay

The Beech Mountain Metric is a classic mountain metric century that finishes atop Beech Mountain, famed climb of past Tour DuPont rides. The fifth annual ride is May 19, 2018.
 
With 8,000 feet of climbing in the 61-mile ride, the Beech Metric is a true test for the strongest of riders.
 
For those looking for a slightly less challenge, there is a 43-mile ride with 5,600 feet of climbing. For registration info, click here.
 
There are many lodging options - from hotels to condos to vacations homes - right near the finish line. See below for deals available the weekends of: May 18-20 (Metric weekend), and June 22-24 (Blood, Sweat & Gears weekend) to all Beech Mountain Metric and BSG riders.
 
Please call to redeem discount; all discounts must be mentioned at time of reservation to receive discount.
 
10% off stays of one night or more:
20% off stays of two nights or more:

Stay 3 nights for the price of 2:

Visit www.beechmtn.com/lodging for a full list of Beech Mountain's inns, condos and vacation homes


 Restaurant Discounts - 10% off

 
Beech Mountain Metric is a BSG Events ride that is planned and executed by the businesses and citizens of Beech Mountain. BSG Events is a 501c3, 100% volunteer non-profit, fund raising organization. Net proceeds are donated to local charities and public safety agencies in the High Country.
 

Beech Mountain Club

BeechMtnClub

The Beech Mountain Club is a private club that offers a number of activities and facilities for visitors to enjoy year-round. Most accommodation rentals include use of the Club and entitle visitors to all the amenities, such as the 18-hole mountaintop golf course stretching 6,099 yards with a spectacular view of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

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The two-story clubhouse sits perched on a rock overlooking the 10th and 14th holes of the golf course. Guests can enjoy diverse dining with a picturesque view of mountains in Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina. The Club has a swimming pool, tennis courts, fitness center, and recreation department with a wide array of organized activities, even for smaller children. The Club also runs a day camp for children from mid-June until mid-August.

½ price Golf with a Stay on Beech

You’ll always enjoy spectacular views and cool temperatures at Beech Mountain. Now, for a limited time, you can enjoy half-price mountain golf on Beech, too.

Built as Eastern America’s Highest Golf Course the views are spectacular and the air is cooler at mile-high Beech Mountain – a year-round resort that’s 5,506 feet above sea level and 30 minutes from Boone, N.C. With its offerings of golf, tennis, swimming, fine dining, shopping and summer highs in the 70s; Beech is a cool place to visit.

Now, for a limited time, Beech Mountain is offering a Stay-and-Play package: 50% off one round of golf per person at the picturesque Beech Mountain Club. Package rates begin at $79 per person per night (minimum of two nights on weekends only) through late October, excluding the month of July. Choose from 700-plus lodging options including inns, condominiums, chalets and vacation homes. The offer is valid for individuals and groups up to 20. And, if one round at 50% off isn’t enough, golfers can play an additional round for just $50, including cart, if available. Come play Beech Mountain Club one of the High Country’s Premier Golf Courses.

To take advantage of this offer, call (800) 468-5506 and mention the special golf package.

Biking

Cyclists Enjoy the Best of Three Worlds on Beech

Cycling-Beech-MountainForget the best of both worlds. On Beech Mountain, cyclists get the best of three worlds.

Beech offers a trifecta of biking/cycling options: (1) Road cyclists have 51 miles of designated routes; (2) Cross-country mountain bikers have seven miles of trails in the Emerald Outback; and (3) Downhill mountain bikers have the highest lift-served park east of the Rockies!

Road Cycling - Beech Mountain’s 51 miles of bike routes have a storied history. They were once the final stage of the Tour Du Pont, which was won twice by Lance Armstrong. Armstrong also made Beech Mountain one of his preferred training grounds prior to winning his first Tour de France title.

The main climb ascends 1,400 feet in just over three miles. It is one of many rides for advanced cyclists. There are also options for less advanced cyclists, with routes for those content to cruise along with lesser changes in altitude.

All routes begin at the Visitors Center. Most trails run through paved residential areas, while others take you by Buckeye Lake and the Recreation Center. Get trail maps and more info at: www.bikebeechmountain.com

Cyclists looking for the most extreme challenge can enter the Beech Mountain Metric. This timed ride takes place each May and is a classic mountain metric century that finishes in the town of Beech Mountain after a grueling 8,000 feet of total elevation gain. For details on the Beech Mountain Metric ride, please click here.

Emerald Outback Mountain BikingCross Country Mountain Biking - The Emerald Outback @ Beech Mountain features about seven miles of trails that range in elevation from 4,700-5,400 feet, giving the park the distinction of being among the highest such venues on the East Coast. There’s a nice combination of single track, double track and gravel road trails traversing the mountaintop, all accessible from a trail head in the town of Beech Mountain and a second trailhead at the end of North Pinnacle Ridge Road.

The Emerald Outback hosted USA Cycling's Collegiate Mtn Biking National Championships in 2013 and 2014, and several trails were rebuilt and redesigned in the fall of 2014. For a free trail map or more info, visit the Emerald Outback website.

Beech Mountain Resort - Test your downhill skills on nine exciting downhill trails served by the chairlift at Beech Mountain Resort. The trails are open Friday through Sunday from early June through mid October.

Mountain-biking-downhillTrail ratings vary from easy to extremely difficult. The most difficult trails were the site of USA Cycling's Mountain Bike Gravity National Championships in 2011 and 2012. 

The resort offers mountain bike rentals, equipment rentals, lift tickets and food & beverage service. Bikers may also ride the lift to access the Emerald Outback trail system.

For more info and a map of the downhill trails, please click here.

 

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