A Year-Round Guide to Franklin and Nantahala

Three Mountain Trails for a Leaf-Peeping Bike Ride Overmountain Victory Trail • DuPont State Recreational Forest • Boone Greenway Overmountain Victory Trail Wilkesboro Red, yellow, and burgundy leaves provide a

Rosemary and Goat Cheese Strata

Three Mountain Trails for a Leaf-Peeping Bike Ride Overmountain Victory Trail • DuPont State Recreational Forest • Boone Greenway Overmountain Victory Trail Wilkesboro Red, yellow, and burgundy leaves provide a

Year of the Trail: 3 Mountain Trails for a Leaf-Peeping Bike Ride

Three Mountain Trails
for a Leaf-Peeping Bike Ride

Overmountain Victory TrailDuPont State Recreational ForestBoone Greenway



Overmountain Victory Trail
Wilkesboro

Red, yellow, and burgundy leaves provide a colorful setting for cyclists as they ride through an old-growth forest on a fall day, whipping around banked turns and sailing over small jumps. The six-mile intermediate trail — a portion of the longer 330-mile Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail — at W. Kerr Scott Reservoir begins at the Visitors Assistance Center, twists and turns along the lake, and ends at Bandit’s Roost Campground. The multiuse trail follows the approximate path that men in the Patriot militia from Wilkes and Surry counties took when returning from a pivotal victory over Loyalists at Kings Mountain in 1780. Cyclists enjoy views of the lake and dam, and might glimpse wild turkeys or pileated woodpeckers — but the best part of the trail may simply be the thrill of the ride. — Rebecca Woltz

W. Kerr Scott Reservoir
499 Reservoir Road
Wilkesboro, NC 28697
(336) 921-3390



DuPont State Recreational Forest is home to six waterfalls, including the 125-foot High Falls. photograph by BSPollard/iStock/Getty Images Plus

DuPont State Recreational Forest
Brevard

North Carolina’s first state forest — established in 1996 — is so picture-perfect, it served as the backdrop for scenes from the 2012 movie The Hunger Games. Here, you’ll find breathtaking waterfalls, lakes, and granite outcroppings with beautiful views of fall colors. Oh, and nearly 100 miles of multi-use trails. For mountain biking newbies, try the old logging roads, which are mostly level, or the Wintergreen Falls Trail: a 1.5-mile out-and-back trail tucked away from the crowds. The gradual descent to the falls does mean some uphill on your return, but the pretty, 20-foot falls are worth it, and the shaded trail isn’t strenuous. For something a bit more dramatic, take a 4.4-mile round-trip ride on mostly wide gravel roads to the 120-foot Bridal Veil Falls and enjoy a picnic at the base. — Katie Schanze

DuPont State Recreational Forest
Staton Road
Cedar Mountain, NC 28718
(828) 877-6527
dupontstaterecreationalforest.com


Boone Greenway

For beautiful fall views in the mountains with minimal effort required, pedal along this mostly flat, family-friendly greenway, which follows and crosses the South Fork of the New River through open meadows, across a covered bridge, and through beautiful forests for more than two miles. It all feels very far away from the busy streets of the charming mountain town it calls home. Keep an eye out for a historic ruin, and pause often to read interpretive signs, rest on benches and at picnic tables, and bird-watch. And, of course, to admire the changing leaves on the surrounding peaks. — Katie Schanze

Boone Greenway Trail
355 MLK Jr. Street
Boone, NC 28607

This story was published on Sep 12, 2023

Rebecca Woltz

Rebecca is the staff writer at Our State.

Katie Schanze

Katie Schanze is an associate editor and digital content editor at Our State.