Hey y’all-hope your Monday wasn’t too shabby. I’m thankful I got started on some organization projects over the weekend. (Although I’m still behind on my to-do list!) It was so nice to have a chill weekend at home after being out of town or on the go the previous few weekends. Anyways, today I’m sharing some snapshots of a super fun fall activity I did last weekend- apple picking in the North Carolina mountains! I went on a retreat to Montreat, NC with 11 other girls from my BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) group. We drove about an hour to Hendersonville, NC to go apple-picking while we were there. This was my third time apple-picking overall, but my first time in eight years. When I lived in Greenville, SC, the NC mountains were only about an hour away. Therefore, it was super easy to take a half-day trip to go apple-picking. On the other hadn’t, there aren’t any apple orchards close enough to the Durham area to make it a day trip. So I was thankful for the opportunity to go apple-picking in the North Carolina mountains on this retreat!
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Stepp’s Hillcrest Orchard
There is no shortage of apple orchards in the Hendersonville area of western North Carolina. In fact, Henderson county is NC’s largest producer of apples. In fact, one of my friends joked that a particular road should be renamed “Apple Road” because it had so many apple places on it. Our group ended up at Stepp’s Hillcrest Orchard.
Keep in mind that if you go on apple-picking on a Saturday, it’s going to be extremely crowded. We actually went to Grandad’s Apples, a well-known apple orchard, first. But even though we found a parking spot, it was so crowded we ended up leaving, especially after learning how picked-over the orchard was. Although Stepp’s was busy, there were still plenty of apples to pick!
Apple-Picking: What to Expect
Apple-picking is super simple and fun! We simply checked in with the farm hand, who gave us baskets based on the amount of apples we anticipated picking. Then he explained the layout of the orchard, and gave us maps with location of in-season apples marked. There are many varieties of apples, and not all peak at the same point in the season. We then headed out into the orchard and picked our apples. After we finished picking, we went back up to the Apple house, where we paid for our apples based on weight.
More Fall Fun at Stepp’s
Apple picking is the main attraction at Stepp’s, but there’s plenty of other fall fun. You can actually shoot apples out of a cannon. A few in our group actually did that. In addition, there’s a pumpkin patch, hay ride, and corn maze. A bakery stand inside the apple house sells hot apple cider, apple cider slushies, coffee, and donuts. Despite the fact that many of us wore long sleeves because we thought it would be chilly in the mountains, it was actually a warm day. Thus, an apple cider slushy was very refreshing! Finally, Stepp’s had a sign in the apple house that proclaimed they are a Christian business, and strive to glorify God in everything they do.
“Know How to Pick ‘Em”
I was super excited about getting to wear my Lauren James long-sleeved Sweet Tee with apples while actually picking apples. It definitely made for some fun photo opps. Although this exact Lauren James Sweet Tee is from last year, they just released an all-new line of long-sleeved Sweet Tees, which you can pre-order here. There isn’t an apple design this year, but there’s plenty of other cute options. I especially love this preppy pumpkin tee. Bonus- you can save 15% on any Lauren James Sweet Tee with code “PINEAPPLE15.”
I have always been more of a beach girl than a mountain girl. And while last weekend in the mountains reminded me that I am still way more of a beach girl, I was still so thankful to get away and experience the beauty of God’s creation in the North Carolina mountains. Apple-picking is hands down my favorite thing to do in the North Carolina mountains. My most recent mountain trip prior to this retreat was almost four years ago, and it was during January, so apple-picking wasn’t an option then. Hopefully it won’t be another eight years before I go apple-picking again!
I hope that you enjoyed this post and that it gave you some inspiration for fall fun and what to expect if you’re apple-picking in the North Carolina mountains.
Have you ever been apple-picking before? If so, where did you go, and what was your favorite thing about it?
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