We just got back from a quick summer getaway, trying to beat the heat on the coast by heading up to the Blue Ridge Mountains. Well…it was hot up there too.
So while I download a ton of pictures I thought I would just post some quickie videos my phone, er, I mean camera made for me over night. (I may have to buy some more data space from WP to upload here!)
The first day we headed up to Asheville, NC and to the Biltmore House, the Vanderbilt Mansion, completed and moved into on Christmas Eve, 1895.With 250 rooms, 43 bathrooms and over 4 acres of floor space it is said to be the largest family home in the US. The closest thing to a castle in the United States
This was something to see!
Certainly more than I anticipated.
To give you some teasers for the Biltmore post, the house boasted two original Renoir’s and three fireplaces in its ‘banquet room’, a Bachelor’s wing complete with hidden doors, and a 14k gold paneled Master Bedroom complete with a tub carved out of a block of marble.
But as impressive as the house was so were the grounds and the garden of the 8,000 acre estate, including one of my favorites, the Palm Room or a greenhouse dedicated to exotic palm trees.
Walking the trails looked like they were conceived to duplicate a fairy tale. Yes the architects not only added 4 gardens and a greenhouse but rebuilt the mountain side adding over 3 million new, exotic and imported trees.
But all that later, I have to get started on my unpacking. Here is a summary video (that my camera made) of the pics I took that day.
The end of the day at the Biltmore house led us to trails down to his ‘Bass Pond’, where our girls just fell in love with nature, streams, waterfalls, bare feet in cold streams and so forth. Living on the coast, this was new to them.
So the next day we drove down to Bryson City, NC and rode the old Smokey Mountain Railroad up to the Nantahala River Gorge and rafted back down. The Nantahala was cold, crystal clear and relaxing.
We spent the night in a glorified tent I now understand they have a term for, Glamping.
The next day we introduced our girls to zip lining on a kids zip line course. Then lunch and another trip down the Nantahala before heading home.
Do you think our girls enjoyed zip lining?
They were the only ones signed up for the first time slot that morning and so the guides just let them have run of the whole course until the next time slot, some 2 hours later. It was like a race to see how many times they could, ah….Zip!
Unlimited Zip Lining..oh yea!
That’s all for now. If I haven’t bored you with yet more shameless family videos check back in a few days as I collect my thoughts on how to organize 80 pics into a short story or two.
If my summary video piqued your curiosity on the Biltmore House, here is a video with a little more information on the grand house. The hundreds of story lines behind this house are as colossal as the house itself. Each room was built with a story or theme in mind and the whole property is its own work of art and years ahead of its time in the 1890’s.
A small example is pictured in the video below. It is his library, with over 10,000 books, many original versions, an Italian painting on the ceiling, a 16th century tapestry over the fireplace and the largest of 65 fireplaces on the property.
Have a great weekend knuckleheads!
I’ll try to do better next time..