The Mountain of Youth at The Coves

wellness NC mountain communities

An active lifestyle is important at any age but at retirement, it becomes crucial to maintain the highest quality of life into our golden years. Once we stop working, if we stop moving, it reduces our stamina. Exercise feels good and is important because it can ease symptoms of chronic conditions, and delay, and even prevent, disease. People who stay active have healthier immune systems, blood pressure levels, and are at less of a risk for heart disease or osteoporosis.

Simply going for a hike in the woods or mountain bike ride may be all it takes to reduce your risk of stroke or heart attack and prevent falls. Hiking also benefits us mentally by improving the quality of sleep and boosting our mood and self-confidence. And what better place to enjoy the great outdoors than in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina. There are so many fabulous hikes near Asheville NC than you can explore 365 days a year.

At one of the most beautiful NC mountain communities near Blowing Rock, The Coves Mountain River Club is the place to hike along the slow moving Johns River which originates from Grandfather Mountain. It’s the place to breathe in fresh air and let the sound of rushing water put you at ease. Kayaking and canoeing are also popular to enjoy an epic river adventure.

The riverfront trail leads to Coleton’s Swimming Hole, an old-fashioned swimming hole with a rope swing. There are also four cascading waterfalls along the trails.  All in all, The Coves has 39 miles of groomed mountain hiking trails surrounding all the stunning North Carolina mountain homes within the neighborhood.

The Johns River is just one of the many wellness amenities that residents enjoy at The Coves. Here’s a quick over of all the amenities:


  • Gated Entrance
  • 6,000 Square Foot Mountaintop Lodge
  • Infinity-view Saline Swimming Pool & Hot Tub
  • Modern Fitness Center
  • Full Service Equestrian Center
  • 39 Miles of Hiking & Horse Trails
  • Four Waterfalls and Community Parks
  • Two Community Gardens
  • Five Miles of River Frontage on the Johns River

If you’re searching for the fountain of youth, come experience our mountain of youth at The Coves.

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84 page complimentary Western North Carolina Visitor’s Guide which provides more information about living in the foothills.

Tags: Greenways & Trails | Lenoir

Pisgah National Forest – Adventurous Hikes Near Asheville NC

hikes near Asheville NC

Western North Carolina offers a tremendous variety of recreation opportunities for the outdoor enthusiast.

One of the most popular places for hikes near Asheville NC is the Pisgah National Forest. This paradise of mile-high peaks and heavily-wooded slopes offers hundreds of miles of trails to explore. You’ll see a fascinating array of wildlife, plants and hardwood trees along the way.

People who own North Carolina mountain real estate have learned to appreciate and coexist with the pristine beauty of their surroundings while keeping in mind that outdoor activities in natural settings can sometimes carry inherent risks. Always be aware of your limits and focus on remaining safe.

The Pisgah National Forest encompasses more than 500 thousand acres. Conveniently close to several gated communities near Asheville NC, it’s a photographer’s dream, punctuated by picturesque whitewater rivers and cascading waterfalls that are simply postcard-perfect.

Even many locals may not know that they’re living near the very first tract of land purchased under the Weeks Act of 1911, which led to the creation of the national forests in the eastern United States. The Pisgah National Forest is also home to the first school of forestry in the United States and two of the first designated wilderness areas in the east.

You’ll find many camping, picnic and day-use areas for your enjoyment:

Dispersed Camping Areas:

  • Appalachian Ranger District
  • Big Ivy Area, Coleman Boundary
  • Black Mountain / South Toe River Area
  • Harmon Den Area
  • Hot Springs Area

Grandfather Ranger District

  • Linville Gorge Wilderness area
  • Wilson Creek Wild and Scenic River Area
  • Pisgah Ranger District
  • Shining Rock Wilderness

Group Camping Areas:

  • Appalachian Ranger District
  • Briar Bottom Group Campground

Pisgah Ranger District Areas:

  • Cove Creek Group Campground
  • Kuykendall Group Campground
  • Wash Creek Horse Camp
  • White Pines Group Campground

Campground Camping

  • Appalachian Ranger District
  • Black Mountain / South Toe River Area
  • Black Mountain Campground
  • Carolina Hemlocks Recreation Area
  • Harmon Den Area
  • Harmon Den Horsecamp
  • Hot Springs Area
  • Rocky Bluff Campground
  • Grandfather Ranger District
  • Boone Fork Campground
  • Curtis Creek Campground
  • Mortimer Campground
  • Pisgah Ranger District
  • Bent Creek Experimental Forest
  • Lake Powhatan Campground
  • Davidson River Recreation Area
  • North Mills River Campground
  • Sunburst Campground
  • Wolf Ford Horse Camp
  • Briar Bottom Bicycle TR 1006
  • Grandfather Ranger District
  • Old Fort Picnic Area
  • Point Lookout Trail

Road cycling is available at these locations:

  • Briar Bottom Bicycle TR 1006
  • Grandfather Ranger District
  • Old Fort Picnic Area

Point Lookout Trail

  • Rock climbers can challenge themselves here:
  • Grandfather Ranger District
  • Linville Gorge Wilderness area
  • Wilson Creek Wild and Scenic River Area
  • Little Lost Cove Cliffs

Of course, anyone who enjoys backpacking and hikes near Asheville NC will find that there are far too many exciting options to list here.

One of the especially nice spots for swimming and non-motorized boating is the Wilson Creek Wild and Scenic River Area. Owners of North Carolina mountain real estate at The Coves Mountain River Club are fortunate to live along five miles of beautiful Johns River frontage near Wilson Creek, so they’re able to enjoy all the benefits of being right on the edge of Pisgah National Forest – like the sparkling clean water, fresh mountain air, mild four-season weather and unspoiled environment. Wilson Creek is also know for some of the best trout fishing in North Carolina and challenging kayak rapids.

Living near a forest is a pleasant change from living in the city, with all of its stress and congestion. As one of the finest gated communities near Asheville NC, The Coves Mountain River Club has become a very popular place to retire and live the good life. That’s because we offer not only an amazing number of options for outdoor adventure in the Pisgah National Forest but easy access to everything else you may need or want to do, like shopping, dining, medical facilities, local culture, continuing education, golf, and so much more. We also have more than 39 miles of hiking trails within our community.

When you’re in the Lenoir area, be sure to stop by The Coves Mountain River Club and let us take you for a hike and show you around our mountain paradise. 

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule a visit.

Tags: Greenways & Trails | Lenoir | Uncategorized

Why Horse Lovers Choose Equestrian Communities in North Carolina

There’s nothing like finding activities that tend to both our bodies and our souls that we can enjoy every day. For many who have been fortunate enough to live in the gated communities near Asheville NC, there’s no end to the activities and recreation that are available year round.  This is why so many are building in the mountains, choosing mountain property and bringing their dream house to fruition.  It’s no surprise that the equestrian communities have discovered the splendor of North Carolina too. What could be better than combining your love for horses with a love of mountain land?

Health Benefits

The perks of horse ownership and riding are no secret.  There’s been plenty of research that has shown the health benefits of an equestrian lifestyle. Just as we know how healing our relationships with our cats or dogs can be, the same is true for the bond we share with our horses.  Those who study history dating back to the Ancient Greeks recognize this is no new thing.  Today there are therapeutic riding programs for children and adults who have various physical, mental and emotional needs.  When riders learn to connect with the horse, they gain an understanding of trust and connection, as well as how to learn, grow, and adapt to new situations.  The physical benefits are equally essential–improving balance, strength, coordination and often times alleviating chronic pain.

Scenic Beauty

No wonder there’s been a growth of equestrian communities across the country as well as for those living in the gated communities near Asheville NC.  Our serene mountain setting is ideal for horse owners. Shaded forests, babbling streams and gentle topography provide plenty of places to enjoy a picnic and immerse in the great outdoors. Our barn borders community gardens, a community park and waterfall and the Johns River. If you are considering building in the mountains, The Coves is an idyllic spot to settle down and saddle up.

Full Boarding Services

Round Mountain Ranch is where it all comes together at The Coves.  Our gorgeous red barn is situated along the Johns River, with high vaulted ceilings, a padded floor, tack room and fifteen acres of pasture for the horses to roam.  We know how to tend to the horse lovers in the community; in addition to its full-service equestrian center, parcels are available–ranging from four and a half to thirty acres–including improved pastures from an acre to more than four.  Talk about a dream come true—the perfect mountain home with enough land to board your own horse!  The Coves designed their equestrian parcels carefully, so many are graced with spring-fed streams to quench your horse’s thirst.  For horse lovers building in the mountains who desire boarding on their home site, but need a little help with care, assistance is available from Round Mountain Ranch. This way you’re still free to travel and pursue the other passions in your life. Having an equestrian center within the neighborhood means having a restroom, wash room, tack room, feed area, arenas, and security at the barn.

Groomed Horse Trails

Those days when you are staying at home at The Coves, there are thirteen miles of well-tended horse trails that meander through parks, and past four waterfalls that give you a reason to pause and be thankful. Highland River Trail is ten miles from the lodge, traversing to the Johns River where Mila Cascading Falls ends the gorgeous ride.  Magnolia Trail is three climbing miles to an elevation of 100 feet, providing a bird’s eye view of the Johns Rivers, and concludes at Coleton’s Swimming Hole for a refreshing dip. There’s plenty explore without ever leaving your neighborhood.   

Are you looking to be part of one of North Carolina’s equestrian communities?  Our equestrian center provides the latest technology, vet services, farriers, chiropractors, message therapists, dental vets, lessons, select feed service, turn out, pasture rotation, and round-pen training.  If you are considering the gated communities near Asheville NC, look no further.  Round Mountain Ranch at The Coves would certainly be the desired home for your four-legged best friend.

Mild Four Season Weather

Our mild four season weather creates an ideal environment for those who don’t like to take long breaks from riding during the harsh winter and for those who prefer to be outdoors instead of training inside an arena. Ride through fields of wild flowers in the spring, to our swimming hole in the summer, through the colorful forest during the fall foliage season or see a different perspective riding in the winter, when the leaves are off the trees.

Horse Socials

There’s nothing better than bonding with your horse while bonding with other horse enthusiasts.  Like sharing stories and horse care tips. Living in an equestrian community provides convenient opportunities to trail ride with neighbors who also own a horse at The Coves. Our relaxed environment to make this all possible, so be sure to come visit and discover the benefits of an equestrian center within your neighborhood.

If you have a horse or are thinking of purchasing a horse, come tour Round Mountain Ranch at The Coves.

Call us at 828.754.0700!

Tags: Greenways & Trails | Lenoir

Overmountain Victory Trail Connects to Lenoir NC

hikes near Asheville NC

In 1780, the war for independence was raging.  And a group of patriotic farmers and family men were about to change the course of history.

Marching through the majestic Appalachians, this rag-tag collection of citizen soldiers made their way to Kings Mountain.  There, they met and defeated a British-led army of regulars in a hard-fought battle that Thomas Jefferson would later call the “turning of the tide” for the American Revolution.

A century later in 1980, the United States Congress officially designated the route they took as the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail (OVNHT).  Its 330-mile length stretches through four states.  It leads right by Downtown Lenoir and is one of the best hikes near Asheville NC.

The Lenoir to Morganton OVNHT is one mile wide and extends approximately 20 miles from the heart of Caldwell County to the northern reaches of Burke County.  It’s the culmination of a longstanding desire by Caldwell County Pathways to connect the City of Lenoir greenway, the town of Gamewell, and the City of Morganton greenway along the Lower Creek corridor.  And it’s forward-thinking projects such as this that make this area the best place to retire in North Carolina.

Those of us fortunate to live in mountain homes near Asheville never take for granted the natural splendor that surrounds us.  The OVNHT is just one of many Western North Carolina trails that afford us countless opportunities to hike, bike or just walk and enjoy the beauty of our environment.  Open spaces and fresh air define our lifestyle and help to keep us healthy.

Although we enjoy our modern amenities and having easy access to nearby cities when we need it, we honor, appreciate and enjoy the rich history found in our mountain communities.  Hikes near Asheville NC, such as the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail, take us on paths walked by those who endured so many hardships to settle this magnificent area we call home.

There’s so much to see and do in and around Lenoir and other nearby towns, from the quaint to the modern.  At The Coves Mountain River Club, our residents have countless opportunities to explore and learn.  It’s the best place to retire in North Carolina if you want to stay active and be challenged by a new experience every day.  Being right on the bank of the Johns River adjacent to Wilson Creek, we’re ideally located for anyone who likes to fish.  And our on-site golf course offers some of the most spectacular views anywhere.

Fall, of course, brings people from all over the country to see the changing of the leaves, and living at The Coves Mountain River Club you’ll have a front-row seat for the show.

We offer some of the finest mountain homes near Asheville, each one designed and built to take maximum advantage of its setting.  When you’ve visiting the area, stop by and see our innovative models and the many attractive options and features that can make one of them your own.  There’s a size and a floor plan for every budget, so if you’ve ever considered retiring to a life of leisure in the North Carolina mountains, it’s worth your while to see The Coves Mountain River Club and all we have to offer. 

You’ll want to stop by the Pisgah Mountain Lodge, where we gather for special events such as food and wine tastings.  When you sit on the deck outside, take a deep breath and watch the sun set over the mountains, you’ll begin to understand why this place is so very special to us who live here.

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule a visit!

Tags: Greenways & Trails | Lenoir

Best Mountain Biking Towns Include Lenoir NC

mountain bike trails in North Carolina

“You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy a bicycle, and that’s pretty close.”  – Anonymous

No one knows who coined the sentiment, but biking enthusiasts know it’s true! Especially those living in the mountain towns in North Carolina, land of the best mountain biking anywhere.

Okay, cyclists, have we got your attention? Good! Now, before you gear up and get ready to hit the trails, we’ve got a few tips on how to handle the curves ahead – not to mention the thrilling elevations –for your ultimate off-road adventure on the mountain bike trails in North Carolina.

Did you know the state is divided into three distinct sections according to its changing terrain from east to west? Biking buffs abound on the Western North Carolina (WNC) side, known as “the mountains section.” This is thanks in no small part to the more than 3,400 bike trails in Asheville, WNC’s largest city and the heart of the region.

The tree-lined trails in scenic Asheville take cyclists for the ride of their life along gravel roads that wind through forested valleys, past lazy streams, and up steep mountainsides. All these elements, plus the year-round mild climate, make this area perfect for exploring on two wheels.

WNC is known for three main trail systems – Pisgah National Forest, Dupont State Forest (DSF), and Tsali. These are the three cyclist meccas traditionally featured in cycling magazines and on social media, and here’s why:

Pisgah’s trails are described as some of the most challenging because of their wet, rocky, and rooty terrain. But they’re also well maintained and frequently traveled by fellow cyclists.

DSF trails also make for some tricky riding over plenty of bumps and hills. And keep an eye out for that slickrock! Many DSF trails cross over large expanses of solid granite, a unique feature that can make for some smooth maneuvering.

Tsali trails are more hardpacked and make for exceptionally long and extremely fast riding along flat, level pathways. Tsali’s hills can be long, but they’re not very steep, and they offer gorgeous views of Fontana Lake and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

These trail systems are all located within a short driving distance of downtown Asheville, a lively city with a vibrant night life and dynamic art scene. All of this makes Asheville a must-see-must-do town on the Blue Ridge bucket list of WNC visitors with a passion for cycling. And Asheville’s ranking on so many “best places to retire” lists has been known to inspire cyclists – and mountain lovers in general –  to settle in to a dream home of their own in one of the many gated communities near Asheville NC.

But Asheville isn’t the only game in town for mountain lovers and avid cyclists. In recent years, a slew of new hiking and biking trails have opened up in and around the towns of Boone, Banner Elk, Blowing Rock, and Lenoir. The trails in these towns grace some of the most majestic mountains in Western North Carolina, and they’re quickly growing in popularity. From the breathtaking highs of the 3,600-foot Blowing Rock elevation to the sweet Sugar Mountain valley down below, these trails are attracting cyclists from far and wide. Here are a few of our favorites:

Beech Mountain Trails

What sets Beech Mountain apart from all the rest? It’s the highest town in Eastern America with elevations at 5,506 feet. It’s not only high off the ground, it’s also high on our list of places for best biking adventures. If you’re looking for an unforgettable ride, you can’t beat Beech Mountain. Casual cyclists will enjoy the easy scenic routes, tailor made for cruising a summer day away. Advanced cyclists will find their fill of challenges here, including climbs of 1,400 feet in only 3-1/2 miles! Professional road racing cyclist Lance Armstrong covered many if not all of Beech Mountain’s 51 miles of biking routes, so you know this place has true cycling appeal. And there are plenty of events held throughout the year, including regular Beech Mountain Bike Club rides, guided group rides (third Saturday of the month, May through October), and the annual Beech Mountain “Beest” Weekend Cycling Time Trial held each May.

Sugar Mountain Trails

It may be best known for its fabulous ski slopes, but this mountain has year-round appeal with runners, walkers, hikers, and bikers. Life is sweet on Sugar Mountain, with its welcoming landscape and far-reaching views. Just minutes from Grandfather Mountain and Linville Gorge, Sugar Mountain has 11 trails of varying difficulty to suit a variety of outdoorsy types, from the gentle walkers who enjoy the quiet of the woods to the adrenaline seekers who prefer a heart-pumping trek along the higher elevations. Mountain bikers love the network of trails that weave their way throughout the Village of Sugar Mountain. And when they’re ready to practice their downhill cycling skills, they can catch a lift to the top of the slopes on Sugar Mountain Resort’s chair lifts. All visitors can enjoy free trail access during daylight hours from May through October. And cycling fans will be the first in line when May brings The Showdown at Sugar Mountain, a NORBA (National Off Road Bicycle Association) National Championship Event that showcases both professional and amateur cyclists participating from all 50 states.

Zack’s Fork Mountain Trails

It may be only three miles long, but this single-track loop in the center of Lenoir NC is built for fun. It opened in 2014 and has since become a favorite among beginners, advanced riders, and everyone in between. It’s short and sweet with a nice curvy downhill descent that makes it a must-ride for Lenoir bike buffs. Zacks Fork Mountain Bike Trail has been described as “flowy and impressive with lots of berms and bumps” and – spoiler alert! – there’s a quick elevation change (250 ft) for an added thrill at the end of your energetic ride.

Yes, it’s true! The mountain towns in North Carolina really do have the best mountain biking anywhere. And these days, we’re seeing more and more enthusiasts making the move to the mountains, where they can enjoy year-round hiking and biking.

At The Coves Mountain River Club in Lenoir NC, neighbors not only have plenty of trails to traverse, they even enjoy the invigorating hike – or bike! – up to their neighborhood clubhouse, Pisgah Mountain Lodge, which takes them to elevations ranging from 1,000 to 1,700 feet. You get quite an endorphin boost making your way up the paved roads to the lodge. And once at the top, you’re treated to spectacular views of Grandfather Mountain, Johns River, Wilson Creek, and beautiful cascading waterfalls that can be seen in all directions.

Whether you’re an avid mountain biker or a gentle cruiser who appreciates the slower rolls, or even just a fan of beautiful mountain living, The Coves offers a full schedule of year-round recreational activities and relaxing opportunities. This variety of amenities is just one small part of what attracts so many people to this fabulous gated community in one of the most charming mountain towns in North Carolina.

Come on out to The Coves Mountain River Club and see what we mean… and be sure to bring your mountain bike so you can try our trails!

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule your visit.

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, as for our 84-page complimentary Western North Carolina Visitor’s Guide, which gives you more information about living in the foothills.

Tags: Greenways & Trails | Lenoir

Kayaking Wilson Creek and Local Rivers

kayaking Wilson Creek

Wilson Creek NC and Johns River NC are just two of the popular kayaking destinations in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains and are located right next to The Coves Mountain River Club.  From world-class competitive events to the chance to paddle leisurely through the spectacular scenery and slow moving rivers, kayakers are drawn year-round to the beauty of Western North Carolina’s natural resources.

In addition to the adventure aspect of water sporting activities, kayaking provides numerous health benefits, such as improved cardiovascular health, low wear and tear of tissues, and increased muscle strength around the legs, arms, chest and back.

Here are the top ten kayak runs (with rapids classifications) close to some of the gated communities near Asheville NC which includes The Coves:

  • Johns River, Burke County that runs 6.5 miles long with Class I-II (Easy and Novice)
  • Wilson Creek that offers Class I-III (Easy to Intermediate) and runs 4 miles long
  • The 1.9 miles long Wilson Creek with Class III-V (Intermediate to Expert)
  • The 18 miles Catawba River- Henry Fork offering Class I-III (Easy to Intermediate)
  • Wilson Creek, Caldwell County stretching 6.6 miles long with Class II-III (Novice to Intermediate
  • Steel Creek with Class II-III (Novice to Intermediate) runs 6.6 miles long
  • Catawba River McDowell with Class I-II (Easy and Novice) is 8.5 miles long
  • The 5-mile long Wilson Creek with Class IV (Advanced)
  • Gragg Prong River offers 1.6 miles long stretch with Class IV-V (Advanced and Expert)
  • The upper creek with Class III-IV (Intermediate to Expert) runs 17 miles long

The calm waters of the Catawba River are ideal for all skill levels.  Slow-moving water carries you over 3.5 miles from the Fort Mill dam to the Riverwalk.  Or, you can move at a faster pace through 2.75 miles of rapids.  Kayaking clinics and individual instruction are available.

You can join a group in Morganton for the six-mile Bridgewater Paddle.  It takes about three hours, with opportunities to hone your skills as you’re introduced to the thrill of white water kayaking.

Price Lake, near Blowing Rock, is the largest body of water on the Blue Ridge Parkway and a very popular spot for kayaking.  You can bring your own craft or rent one on site.  If you’re there during the fall foliage season, a calm day will reward you with a stunning view of Grandfather Mountain reflected in the water, along with the sky and surrounding trees.

Wilson Creek NC in Lenoir is known for its water quality, fast moving currents and rugged views.  There are areas for all skill levels, with the upper part of the stream being the most challenging and the gorge reserved for the most experienced kayakers.  Some of the bigger rapids include:

  • Mank Above 10ft
  • Ten Foot Falls
  • No Name
  • Boatbuster
  • Thunderhole
  • Triple Drop
  • Bitchslap
  • Hidden Eddy
  • Razorback
  • Huntley’s Retreat

Finally, flowing from the Pisgah National Forest, Johns River NC runs through Wilson Creek to Lake Rhodhiss, and The Coves Mountain River Club sits on five miles of its banks.  Residents and visitors alike enjoy the Johns River blend of adventure and slow-moving fun.  It’s one of the iconic features of the foothills, where rapids, streams and clean mountain-fed rivers create a nature lover’s paradise.

You’ll find a number of gated communities near Asheville NC, but we know there is nothing else quite like The Coves Mountain River Club.  Here, you can find riverfront property that puts world-renowned North Carolina trout fishing, boating and more right at your own back door.  And our mild four season weather lets you take advantage of outdoor activities no matter what the season.

We offer the most diverse selection of property in the area, from quarter-acre cottage lots to estates that are 25 acres in size.  With our on-site equestrian center set along the Johns River, the mountaintop Pisgah Mountain Lodge and wellness amenities which include an infinity-view swimming pool, you’ll enjoy the mountain lifestyle of your dreams in a scenic setting. You’ll even have a front row seat when the foliage begins its remarkable color changes in the fall. Our lodge is the perfect place to enjoy the kaleidoscope of colors while enjoying Monday morning yoga.

If you’re exploring mountain towns in North Carolina, be sure to stop by let us show you all that we have to offer. Call us at 828.754.0700!

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84 page Complimentary Magazine

Tags: Greenways & Trails | Lenoir