For our next installment of the weekend escapes series, we take a look at the lakes of the North Carolina mountains. Here’s you’ll find plenty of watersports, quaint downtowns, secluded lodging, and plenty of mountain views. Here are our top picks:
Just 8 miles outside Cashiers in Jackson County you’ll find Lake Glenville, a man-made lake formed by the damming of the west fork of the Tuckasegee River. Lake Glenville is the highest lake in elevation east of the Mississippi River. With 26 miles of shoreline, there are plenty of activities including fishing, boating, paddleboarding, and tubing. The lake also features three waterfalls: Norton Falls, Hurricane Falls, and Mill Creek Falls.
Stay where Dirty Dancing was filmed — the picturesque Lake Lure. Lake Lure is located in Hickory Nut Gorge, 27 miles from Asheville and surrounded by mountains. Chimney Rock overlooks the lake, and the village nearby is a great spot for dining and shopping. The lake is owned by the town of Lake Lure, so private residences line the shore. Public access is provided via the beach, marina, and park.
For a secluded getaway, head to Nantahala Lake in the Smoky Mountains. The Nantahala River is a well-known whitewater destination, but the lake is popular for fishing. The waters are crystal clear, making it ideal for swimming and watersports.
Between Brevard and Cashiers you’ll find Lake Toxaway, the largest private lake in North Carolina. You can go hiking for waterfall views, explore the quaint downtown areas of Cashiers and Brevard for shopping and dining, check out the spa at the Greystone Inn, or become beekeepers for a day with Killer Bees Honey Farm in the Pisgah National Forest.