Pisgah National Forest and Cradle of Forestry | The Koep Family
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Pisgah National Forest and Cradle of Forestry

Pisgah National Forest is comprised of several chains of mountains and forests in North Carolina. The bulk of this National Forest located south east of Asheville was where we spent a majority of our outdoor time. This area included the Mills Creek recreation points, where we took numerous mountain bike trips, the Bent Creek Experimental Forest, the location of 50 miles of amazing singletrack mountain biking, the Blue Ridge Hwy., Fairy Falls and Sliding Rock, and dozens of other amazing wonders.

Pisgah National Forest was originally established in the early 1900s by lands sold to the national government by the Vanderbilt family. This area also included the Cradle of Forestry which was location of the first training camps for forest service rangers and forest management professionals.

Words cannot begin to describe how amazing this forest really is. Maybe this story will help convey how cool the location is; one evening we decided to view a sunset from the top of the Blue Ridge Pkwy. to access the highway we drove through the National Forest and therefore had to return back through the National Forest. On the drive out we passed by Fairy Falls, with the sun having already set and dusk well underway Katarina smartly suggested that we stop and take a slow shutter photo of the Falls. As we walked down the stairway to the overlook we were greeted with tiny flashes of light. For Mark having grown up in California fireflies were all but a mystery with this being the first time he had seen them.

So here we are in the middle of the National Forest, in the twilight of a setting sun, with no one else around except for flashing fireflies and a rushing waterfall. The resulting pictures turned out amazing, in fact so amazing that they almost look fake, and the fireflies put on an amazing show. It is moments like these that we are reminded how lucky we are to be doing what we’re doing.

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