When I think of Beech Mountain North Carolina, I think about skiing at Beech Mountain Resort. This fall however, we took a drive to Beech Mountain for a long weekend of outdoor fun. Due to some weather issues, we weren’t able to explore as much of the wonderful outdoors as we would have liked, but we still had a great time exploring the area, taking in the scenery and enjoying The Land of Oz during the popular Autumn at Oz festival, held each October. Here are some recommendations for a fun fall weekend at beautiful Beech Mountain.
What to do at Beech Mountain
Beanstalk Journey: We visited Beech Mountain during our fall break, so we had three days to really explore. We started in Morgantown NC zipping through the trees at Beanstalk Journey Zip Line at Catawba Meadows. Beanstalk Journey is about an hour and a half from Beech Mountain and located within the Catawba Meadows public park, with ball fields on one side, picnic pavilions and unique playground on the other, so it’s easy to make a day of it. Here’s more information on Beanstalk Journey at Catawba Meadows.
Horseback Riding at Dutch Creek Trails: We took a beautiful scenic ride through the mountains via horse at Dutch Creek Trails. Dutch Creek is about 20 minutes from Beech Mountain with trails winding up through gorgeous woods.
Grandfather Mountain: In nearby Linville, NC is Grandfather Mountain, home to the Mile High Swinging (or Singing) Bridge. The admission fee may seem steep at first, $18 per person ($8 per child), but there is a lot to do here and the views are stunning. Here’s more information on Grandfather Mountain.
Mountain Biking the Emerald Outback: A summer in Breckenridge, CO got my boys into mountain biking and we were excited to tackle the Emerald Outback, eight miles of trails that wind through Beech Mountain. The Emerald Outback is the first phase of the Beech Mountain Adventure Trail Park, which will eventually include 25 miles of trails. There is plenty of parking and easy access to the trail in the heart of Beech Mountain, next to the Brick Oven Pizzeria. Weather foiled our attempt to experience the trail, but I read some reviews on Single Tracks that give a decent overview of what you can expect. One thing Beech Mountain doesn’t have at the moment is a bike shop where you can rent bikes. Bring your own or rent them in nearby Boone before heading to Beech Mountain.
Hiking at Beech Mountain – In addition to mountain biking along the Emerald Outback, we were excited to hike Beech Mountain and the 33 miles of trails in the beautiful North Carolina high country. Here’s more information on the Falls Trail loop, located next to the Buckeye Recreation Center.
Where to stay at Beech Mountain
Our home base was the Pinnacle Inn Resort high atop Beech Mountain and a short walk to restaurants and Fred’s Mercantile, where “if they don’t have it, you don’t need it.” We arrived late in the evening to check into our condo unit, a two bedroom, 2 bath with a fireplace, kitchen and full-sized laundry. We were excited to see a shuffleboard court on our way in, as well as the mini-golf course and a playground. Upon closer inspection, we discovered tennis courts as well.
The weather was tough during our stay. Fog engulfed the resort most days, and rain kept us from walking to Brick Oven Pizzeria for dinner and the outdoor movie under the stars, which we would certainly have done on a clear evening. Luckily, the resort has an indoor pool and hot tub to burn off a little energy. There is a sparse game room above the pool, but they do have a ping pong table and some older arcade games. My boys opted for some lounging in the condo after their swim, building marble creations and playing games that were in the condo.
The Pinnacle Inn Resort condominium complex is older and was wrestling with some exterior issues during our stay, like peeling paint, however, our condo’s interior was updated, well-maintained and comfortable. Plus, at $100 a night for fall weekends, was a great place to spread out with the kids.
Where to Eat at Beech Mountain
One of the great things about staying in a condominium like the Pinnacle Inn Resort is that you have a full kitchen at your disposal. There is a Food Lion grocery at the bottom of the mountain and the best place to stock up on essentials. If you forget something, visit Fred’s Mercantile in Downtown Beech Mountain, and a short walk from the Pinnacle. In addition to everything you could need for your stay, Fred serves a great breakfast with crispy melt in your mouth bacon and fluffy biscuits.
If you’d rather not cook any meals, there are lots of different places to eat on Beech Mountain. For a family dinner, Brick Oven Pizzeria is a great option. For more sophisticated dining and a great glass of wine, visit Jackalope’s. Be careful with the dessert. We ordered two brownies to split, but one was bigger than a bread plate and would have been more than enough. I’d show you a picture, but everyone ate it too fast.