Fresh Start

Counseling Center

Quality, Affordable Counseling


 Offering a personalized

approach tailored to the

individual client's needs.


We work with a wide range of

behavioral & emotional issues...

depression, adolescent &

couples counseling, family

relationships, stress management,

physical & sexual abuse &

much more.


Call 828.443.0005 or

click here to visit our website



The High Country Association



We have over 6,000 listings you

can view. Check out the Official

High Country MLS and find the

perfect home for you and your


Click here to begin your search.

5 Reasons to Bring Your

Business to Watauga County


1. Location-Location-Location!

2.  Education Focus

3. Culture of Entrepreneurship

& Creativity

4. Outstanding Quality of Life

5. Hub of Northwestern NC


Watauga County Office of

Economic Development 

Take Your Business to

Higher Ground !

Bald Guy Brew Coffee

Roasting Company


Our roasterie is located in

historic Valle Crucis with

retail shops in Boone,

Blowing Rock, and now at

5506 Beech Mtn Ski Resort.


Twitter: @baldguybrew



"So good it will make your tongue

slap the back of your brain!"

Sky Valley Zip Tours

Your Canopy Adventure Awaits


5 min. from Boone/Blowing Rock


 10 zip lines, a swinging bridge,

a cliff jump, and countless views


Click ad for reservations!


Life Outdoors
Make Text Larger Make Text Smaller Switch Fonts Email This Page Click Here For A Printable Version

Media Sponsors

NWS Special Weather Statement (Buncombe County)

NWS Wind Chill Advisory (Buncombe County)

Lookin' Back and Lookin' Forward
by Brenda

Latest Update: February 4, 2016

Rosebud Orchid

One of my old hiking buddies asked me yesterday to make a list of the native orchids and rare or unusual wildflowers we have seen on our treks the last few years. Our hikes have been in WNC, and East Tennessee, including the Smoky Mountain area. Here’s what I came up with. I hope you enjoy and I hope you are out there seeing them also.

Native orchids:

Aplectrum hyemale (Puttyroot)

Cleistes divaricata (Spreading Pogonia)

Cleistesiopsis bifaria (Small SpreadingPogonia)

Coeloglossum viride (Long Bract Frog Orchid)

Corallorhiza odontorhiza (Autumn Coral Root)

Cypripedium acaule Pink Lady’s Slipper)

Cypripedium parviflorum var. parviflorum (Small Yellow Lady’s Slipper)

Cypripedium parviflorum var. pubescens (Large Yellow Lady’s Slipper )

Epipactis helleborine (Eastern helleborine)

Galearis spectabilis (Showy Orchis)

Goodyera pubescens (Downy Rattlesnake Plantain)

Goodyera repens (Lesser Rattlesnake Plantain)

Isotria verticillata (Large Whorled Pogonia)

Liparis liliifolia (Lily leafed Twayblade)

Liparis loeselii (Fen orchid)

Platanthera ciliaris (Yellow Fringed)

Platanthera clavellata (Small Green Woodland)

Platanthera grandiflora (Large Purple Fringed)

Platanthera lacera (Green Fringed)

Platanthera orbiculata (Large Round Leaved or Pad-Leaved)

Platanthera psycodes (Small Purple Fringe orchid)

Spiranthes cernua (Nodding Ladies’ Tresses)

Tipularia discolor (Cranefly)

Triphora trianthophora (Three Birds)

Wildflowers: American Columbine, Birdsfoot Violets, Long-spurred Violets, Blue Lobelia, Bluets, including the endangered Roan Mountain Bluets, Liatris, Indian Paintbrush, Meadow Rue, Indian Pipe, Angelica, Delphinium, Pickerel Weed, Turkeybeard, Gray's Lily, Turk’s Cap and Carolina and Trout Lily, Bee Balm and Wild Bergamot, Bleeding Heart, Celandine Poppy, Closed Gentian, Bottle Gentian, Ginseng, Skunk Cabbage, Shortia (Oconee Bells), Spreading Avens, Rose or Catesby’s Trillium (T. catesbaei), Vasey’s Trillium (T. vaseyi), Toad Trillium (T. cuneatum), Painted Trillium (T. undulatum), Sweet white (T. simile), Purple Trillium (T. erectum), Snow or Large-flowered Trillium (T. grandiflorum), Yellow Trillium (T. luteum), Nodding Trillium (T. rugelii)

Trees: Aspen, Halesia Carolina (Carolina Silverbell)

Shrubs: Flame Azalea (Rhododendron calendulaceum), Pinkshell Azalea (Rhododendron vaseyi), Pinxter Flower Azalea (Rhododendron nudiflorum), Sweet Azalea (Rhododendron arborescens)

Flame Azalea

Gray's Lily

Pink Lady's Slipper