Features

Making Blue Ridge Memories on Max Patch

A marriage proposal in a sprawling meadow. Mating warblers in the brush. Orphaned boots on the Appalachian Trail. We are drawn to the majesty of Max Patch — a gorgeous bald in Madison County, 4,600 feet above sea level, where forest ends and 350 acres of open land begin — to gather life-changing memories.

Features

Beneath Still Waters

Pioneering environmentalist Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring, began her writing career on a 2,300-acre network of islands a short paddle south of Beaufort. At the reserve that now bears her name, marine scientists follow in her wake.

Features

The Kids Are All Right

The most popular club at some North Carolina high schools is nearly a century old, but it’s as relevant as ever. Energized and optimistic, members of the Future Farmers of America are shaping the state’s agricultural path forward — not just in fields, but in labs and offices, too.

Features

Gathering Wool & Wisdom

On a typical sheep, one year of fleece growth will yield three sweaters. But there are precious few shearers to tend all of the flocks in North Carolina. For the last traveling shearers, an age-old trade has become a kind of modern artistry.

Features

Mr. Smith’s Tree Goes to Washington

This year, one lucky Fraser fir from Avery County is headed to the White House. There are hundreds of contenders on Larry Smith’s tree farm, and he grooms each one to be a star.

Home & Garden

The Everything Root

A cure-all to many, wild ginseng is still hunted and sold in Blue Ridge counties. Protecting it takes vigilance, know-how, and, sometimes, even a stakeout.

×