Chimney Rock State Park & Flowering Bridge – Lake Lure, North Carolina – Part 5 – 20216 min read time

We don’t always visit the more touristy spots, but we decided to try…

Chimney Rock State Park as there is a great view of Lake Lure and Hickory Nut Falls is also in the park.

View of Lake Lure, NC

Details from Wikipedia:

Chimney Rock State Park is a North Carolina state park in Chimney Rock, Rutherford County, North Carolina in the United States. The 8,014-acre (32.43 km2) park is located 25 miles (40 km) southeast of Asheville, North Carolina, and is owned and managed by the state of North Carolina.

The park features hiking trails for all skill levels, views of the Devil’s Head balancing rock, and a 404-foot (123 m) waterfall, Hickory Nut Falls. Its most notable feature is a 315-foot (96 m) granite monolith named Chimney Rock, which is accessible by elevator and provides views of the park and surrounding countryside.

Our Visit to Chimney Rock

You can climb up to the top of Chimney Rock (hard climb) but the easy way is to take the elevator! To get to the elevator, though, you have to go through a tunnel into the mountain!


The elevator opens up into an observation deck and gift shop! Outside there is a walkway that leads to the stairs that go to the iconic “rock” with the flag on it!

Infrared image of Chimney Rock

The view of Lake Lure and the surrounding area was even better from up on the “Rock”!

Infrared – Lake Lure

Hickory Nut Falls

My knees were not too happy at this point in our trip so instead of doing more climbing which you can do from this upper level, we opted to go back down the elevator and take the less steep trail to Hickory Nut Falls.

You can see this falls from the main road down at the main entrance but it is much more spectacular up close!

Only part of Hickory Nut Falls – we were too close to get all of it!

We were fighting with the sunlight that was blowing out the highlights in the water so I had to wait for a cloud to go over to get any reasonable images.

Closer view of Hickory Nut Falls

I had to try at least one Multiple Exposure image!

We finished up at the falls and made our way back down the trail. From there we decided to stop in Lake Lure for a quick lunch.

Flowering Bridge

After eating we headed to the Flowering Bridge which is an older road bridge that was planted in flowers when a new bridge was built.

This beautiful stop was one big garden. There were plantings around the entrance and on the shore down by the river. The gardens continued on the bridge and on the ramp on the other side.

In late May, there were still some late spring flowers blooming. The sun was pretty bright but I was still able to get some great flower images.

There was even a herb/vegetable garden for kids!

But the flowers are what pulled me and my camera up and over the bridge and back again!

When in the Asheville area I highly recommend a stop at Chimney Rock. It is best if you go first thing in the morning before the crowd gets too big. Also, make a stop at the Flowering Bridge in Lake Lure.

Check out the Chimney Rock State Park website for more details as well as the Flowering Bridge website.

My next blog will be on our visit to the Craggy Gardens Trail which is on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

To see larger versions of these and additional images, please visit my Chimney Rock Gallery and my Flowering Bridge Gallery.

That is all for now!


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