Q:How's life in the Blue Ridge Mountains? I used to live in Portland, Oregon and adored the place, except for the winter rains. Tell me about the quality of life, the cost of living. Where are you in the Blue Ridge Mountains? I'm thinking of somewhere near Asheville maybe. I love the outdoors, mountains, rivers, trees, camping, growing food, etc. I just want to know more from someone who actually lives there. I'm in South Florida now and can't wait to get out into the open. :)
Life here is fan-friggin-mazing. There is a LOT of easily accessible beauty and outdoors’ing with the BRP as a main artery (as well as many others, but the BRP by far an away is a hiker’s best bud!) Pisgah Natl Forest runs through a GIGANTIC portion of western NC. There is also Natahala Natl Forest, Cherokee, and of course farther out Great Smokey Mt Natl Park. These all have a wondeful array of camping, hiking, paddling, fishing and Mt biking. The AT is less than an hour from Asheville and there’s a wonderful 930 thru hike called the Mountains-to-Sea trail that goes from the Smokies all the way to the ocean. (Collectively I’ve hiked about 200+ miles of the MST just on day hikes and over nighters here and there. Great stuff.) I bought this book when we first got here and it’s been an invaluable resource for the “new to the area” hiker/camper. I am less than 6 months from a big set of moves all over the West, Portland is definitely one of the places I hope to get to see/live in!
Great to hear, I am actually in Asheville! :D The cost of living is pretty reasonable and the area is VERY self-perpetuating. I.e.: Say you go out for a coffee: Get a cup of joe, and an egg/spinach baguette. The cups are some, awesome “green” material (with it’s own recycle receptacle for the trash). The egg and greens come from a nearby farmer and the bread made at a bakery down the street and you’d trip over a dog on the way to your seat because every place allows dogs haha :) So it’s got a really quaint/tight sense of community.Drifters, leather-tramps, slackpackers and little bluegrass musicians linger on the street corners (very rarely asking for money or panhandeling, but more like, asking if they could have that leftover slice of pizza in your to-go box haha).And the beers!?! Aw man, the tops! We have 14 craft breweries in less than as many miles and they are all notably awesome.
I hope this was helpful/alluring!? haha. Asheville is a great place to live. The surrounding areas offer quite a bit and the weather’s probably a lot better than most places I have ever been, so, lots of time to get out in nature!