Named for the image of an ancient dead tree graveyard embedded in a grassy knoll, Graveyard Fields Hike features spectacular views of the Blue Ridge Mountain range.
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At milepost 418.8 off the Blue Ridge Parkway, just south of Asheville, this short but beautiful trail takes hikers through meadows of wildflowers, fields of blueberries, thick wooded forests, past two stunning waterfalls.
The option of taking the more leisurely short hike to the first waterfall might be the better choice when traveling with small children. The longer 3.5-mile loop trail is considered moderate. The trek starts with a descent down a paved path toward a bridge, then over the bridge, more steps lead to a viewing platform for the Lower Falls, a popular swimming destination. The swimming hole is accessible by a short and moderate .3 mile hike down to the falls. With jump-off rocks and unique, dense plantlife, this gorgeous setting is popular year-round. The waterfall is visible from a pullover along the Blue Ridge Parkway just past milepost 418.8
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Both choices provide scenic settings of Appalachian natural habitat, one of the most diverse collections of plants and animals found in the world’s forests. Animals that flourish around the territory are foxes, raccoons, wild boars, black bears, white-tailed deer, and beaver. The area also includes over 200 species of songbirds, geese, hawks, and ducks. The Appalachian region is rich in coal and other natural resources, including iron, petroleum, and natural gas.
Dogs are allowed on the Graveyard Fields hike but must be leashed. Be sure to bring plenty of water, sunscreen, good hiking boots, and a bathing suit or rain poncho, depending on the weather! Go early to avoid crowds!