To capture the tradition of a joyride in the mountains, we enlisted photographer Emily Chaplin, a Charlotte native with ties to Asheville. Emily spent 10 days in the mountains working solo — no assistant, other than the helpful car owners, who were incredibly generous with their time and prized possessions.
“On a number of occasions, I rode in the passenger side of the car on the way to our shoot location,” Emily says, “and something I found surprising (though I shouldn’t have) and wonderful was how many smiles, thumbs-up, cheers, and waves we received — from pedestrians, other drivers, cyclists.”
For this essay, Emily shot 1,936 pictures and photographed 27 different cars.
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The spectacular views in North Carolina’s High Country aren’t just inspiration for writers, painters, and sculptors. Those landscapes — the rugged gray face of Grandfather Mountain, the vibrant fall leaves, the deep green meadows — are brushstrokes on Earth’s own canvas.
The sprawling vineyards and wide-open skies that stretch for miles across seven North Carolina counties offer relaxing getaways — not to mention some of the state’s finest wines — for Sunday drivers aching to escape the rush of city life.