Our lives now include living at one of the nicest senior communities in the USA. Rossmoor in Walnut Creek, CA. We will still travel in the RV but not full time.

Archive for 05/25/2013

Long Drive to Asheville NC but worth it to see the Biltmore Estate

Whenever you open my blogs and do not get photos, just click on the title and it will take you to them.

OK, it was also important that we get to a Whole Foods.  We got some great meals already prepared.  They helped us a lot traveling up here to the Shenandoah Valley in northern Virginia.

Everyone had said-to go see the largest mansion in America.  It was built by a third generation Vanderbilt as his little summer retreat and basically it covers 4 acres, that’s the house, the land covers miles!!!

It is one of the most beautiful spots in America, Smokey Mountains and trees and gardens I could not believe.  The weird part was that we arrived in sheeting rain, parked in handicapped which meant we rolled up the car windows for Shadow and caught a bus.  We were almost finished seeing the first floor and balcony when the sun came out, hot.  Russ had to catch the bus back to the car to open the windows.  Then a man told him for $10 he could valet park in front of the mansion.  I came up out of the gardens to find our car parked right next to the mansion.  OMG!  Even then the weather joked with us-Russ missed the final floor-basement because it started raining again and he decided to go turn on the air and sit with Shadow.  You get to drive out through the gardens and they are exquisite.

One of the great stories is this- When George Vanderbilt decided to make Western North Carolina his home, he hired the founding father of American landscape architecture—Frederick Law Olmsted—to design the grounds. Olmsted’s vision for Biltmore included a small pleasure ground and garden, a major arboretum and nursery, and a systematically managed forest. A conservation-minded man, Olmsted felt creating a managed forest at Biltmore was important because it could serve as an example for the rest of the country. In fact, the national model for forestry began at Biltmore during those formative years.

The bottom 6 pictures are mine!  I had to find the ones inside the mansion as you cannot take photos.

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