Monday, May 5, 2014

A Weekend in the Mountains - Part 1

Rob and I headed to the mountains this weekend.  We've spent the past couple of years checking out small mountain towns, looking for the area we'd like to purchase some property for weekends and eventually live there when we retire.  We really like the Burnsville area, so this weekend we headed to nearby Spruce Pine, just one county over to check out that area as well.

We left Friday morning and took our time driving up.  We went a little out of our way to stop in Black Mountain for lunch and a little wandering around.
I spotted some of Sue Dial's gorgeous buttons in the yarn shop there.

I was very tempted to purchase 4 of these for the members of the Sock Monkey Sisterhood, but I resisted.
We got to Spruce Pine in the afternoon and checked in to the lovely Richmond Inn.  We've discovered that we prefer staying in a Bed and Breakfast when we're spending a weekend away.  It's enjoyable to meet other travelers over breakfast and have a nice place to hang out when we're not out & about.
The Penland School of Crafts is not far from Spruce Pine, so art there is a lot of art and artists.  The Inn's neighbor is apparently somewhat of an artist as well.
We had dinner Friday evening at a great restaurant called The Tropical Grill.  Fabulous food and very friendly people.  Then we wandered around downtown for a while, and saw some more art, that was a little more practical this time. 

Saturday morning we headed back to historic downtown Spruce Pine for a while to investigate the shops that had been closed the night before.  The Toe River Arts Council was having an event with several artists selling their art, and I might have purchased a few things.

After that, we drove out towards Bakersville.  We went by a piece of property that was for sale, that looked somewhat promising online for a very good price, but after looking at it, decided it wasn't really what we were looking for.  We went into Bakersville, which is tiny, but it had a couple of art galleries where we browsed for a bit. 

In Bakersville we saw a sign for a wolf sanctuary.  If you know Rob, you know he has a fascination with wolves, so we started following the signs.  We had great timing because they are only open for tours on Saturdays certain parts of the year and this Saturday was the first time this year they'd been open.  We saw some gorgeous wolves, and even got to pet one of them.
After the wolves we drove around a bit and drove over to Little Switzerland just to see it.  We went back to the Inn to relax a bit before dinner, then had another wonderful dinner, this time at Knife & Fork.  They have some very unique items on their menu.  Rob had braised rabbit, which was very good.  I opted for a more traditional steak and potatoes, but the blueberry tart with lemon curd that I had for dessert was different and delicious.

Back at the Inn, one of the resident animals took a liking to Rob's lap.  Actually, she wasn't really particular about whose lap she was in, but I was knitting, so I guess she found his more relaxing at the time.
*In the interest of not going on too long, I'm going to chop this up in to two posts, so more tomorrow.

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