Sunday, November 6, 2016


(click on pics to enlarge)
Smoky view from end of Staymon 1-6-19-16
Thanks to a large wildfire in Jackson County, current light winds have been blowing the expansive smoke into Haywood County.  You can see it and smell it...and for those not on the mountain, we are officially in a Severe Drought, with Extreme Drought south and west of us.  High pressure ridges have been dominating the Southeast for over two months, and there is no relief in sight anytime soon. The jetstream needs to start moving to shift the ridges away from here, and there is no sign of significant movement yet.  

Besides needing rain badly, our utility bills have been pleasantly low thanks to the warm temperatures overall.  While not the upper 70s, we'll still be above the average high of around 63 degrees this coming week.  At the end of Staymon, I've still had only 35 degrees as the coldest morning since last season, and no frost yet. Inversions have been alive and well as the valleys have been the colder and frostier locations.
Dawn from the end of Staymon 10-30-16
To end on a nicer note, above is some pretty dawn color from last Sunday.  Thankfully, Daylight Saving Time has kicked in so I can see more dawns like this before heading to work.  


Sunday, October 23, 2016


10-22-16 Saturday dawn (click to enlarge)
October 22. Saturday morning a rather remarkable record of sorts was was by far the latest ever I have recorded my first reading in the 30s to start our descent into the winter months.  Got down to 35 degrees about the time the above photo was taken at the end of Staymon.  Just in the prior days record highs were set in Asheville (84, 84) and Greenville-Spartanburg (89, 87)....and this after the warmest September on record for Asheville.

But now it finally feels like October, and the color is a bit behind schedule.  Rain has been hard to come by...picked up 0.42" with the Hurricane Matthew passage off the NC coast, and just 0.16" Friday with the cold front passage.  The leaves came down mightily Thursday and Friday in the windy conditions, totally covering portions of our roads, but there was a charm (if not a slippery one) driving through it.

Had a bizarre situation happen 2 weeks ago at the intersection of Hall Top and Mauney Cove.  A pickup truck had turned up onto Hall Top and stopped in the middle of the road...Bus #52 was coming down and had to stop...after being stopped for a minute, the truck ever so slowly backed up and headed back down Mauney, slowly at first...then faster and weaving and was far into the left lane, swerving to narrowly miss a red car coming up Mauney.  They then hit the brakes and threw the truck into reverse near the book store and came right at me.  I hit the horn and threw my car into reverse and thankfully no one was behind me.  Then a man came running up from the book store driveway yelling "Who fired that rifle?" at the gray truck who slowly turned into that drive and stopped, the man yelling at the driver to get out of the truck in colorful language...all that to say it was a very scary situation of someone either extremely drunk or high on drugs driving, and with the yelling about a rifle I got out of there as quickly as I could.  Never found out any more than that, and thankfully I didn't watch a potentially deadly head-on collision take place.

It was only a week before that that one of our residents was out for a night dog walk and saw a vehicle stopped with the interior cab light on. As they approached, the driver was clearly visible shooting up drugs in his arm. The walker turned on their flashlight and told them to get the hell out of here and they sped off.  Unfortunately, they were unable to get a tag # but did what we all should do when we see something like that: call the sheriff (828-452-6666).  It wasn't a resident of ACA, but a stark reminder that we are not immune to society's ills here on our mountain.  Everyone's vigilance is greatly appreciated.

If you love the Farmer's Almanac, it calls for a snowy cold winter here...but it is odd man out stacked against National Weather Service long range forecasts.  Most models say we'll stay above average for temps into December, and then be right around average for temps into 2017.  Precipitation may still be hard to come by for a while as we have seen a parade of high pressure cells set up over the Southeast which is supposed to continue.  Not that we won't get some solid cold snaps and hits of good rain once in a while, mind you, it's just the overall trend at this time.  The upside is I'm loving my utility bills so far.  :-)


Monday, September 12, 2016


'Tis the season.

With fall here in the favorable mountain elevations, ginseng or " 'sang" is heading into tell-tale red berry season.  Truth be told, it has many wonderful medicinal properties, ginseng, the roots of which bring a pretty penny these days.  And with that lucrative lure comes the poachers that will do whatever it takes to find and dig up the plant.

That means trespassing and not giving a tinker's damn about your property and your rights.  And right here in Apple Creek.  Sadly, it's an annual event, but there IS something each of us can do.

When you see a strange vehicle in a location that is not normal, get the tag number and call the Haywood Sheriff's office.  If you see strangers walking on or near your property and you don't know who they are, be observant with descriptions and call the Haywood Sheriff's office.  Our Community Watch program is only effective as our diligent observations and awareness, and there is an officer dedicated to Apple Creek Acres.

Haywood Sheriff's Office: 828-452-6666

Put it in your cell phone if you haven't done so already.

Monday, September 5, 2016


What was September 8 for a day of paving on Apple Creek Road has now been shifted to Tuesday September 13.  Pass the word.


Monday, August 29, 2016


(The following is from Jeff Hintzman)

Our road paving is going to take place Thursday, September 8th starting at about 8:30 am. They should be able to finish in a day, but it could run into the 9th.  A sign will beat the bottom of the hill in a few days to this effect.  
Keep in mind that this is all 'weather permitting'; please plan ahead knowing the road will be closed in places at that time.


Sunday, August 14, 2016


It takes a quorum of 64 lots to hold our annual HOA meeting and we had exactly that Saturday morning.  I volunteered to be secretary, so once I type up minutes and have them looked over and approved, I'll pass them along here.  Too, you will get a hard copy with your dues later this year.  As well, it was good to meet and greet some new full-time residents on our mountain at the meeting!  Thanks to all that turned out (or turned in proxies).

One area of discussion that affects us in ACA (read "especially those with bird feeders") was about the bear or bears currently hanging around ACA. As Keith Patton reminded us, "A fed bear is a dead bear" and he provided a video link that drives home the point: minimizing opportunities for bears to get food at houses, be it bird seed, pet food, unsecured garbage, etc. They'll move on naturally, hopefully sooner as opposed to later.  (NOTE: The video link was designed for WY residentsl; while it's over the top for here, the basic principles are the same for all bear-human contact.)

And apologies to any neighbors of mine within earshot that hear an air horn go off in the dark of night (like last night).  I've found it to be the most effective way to get one to move away from the house if it doesn't do so on its own.


Saturday, August 13, 2016


8-13-16 Sunrise from the end of Staymon Rd.
(click to enlarge)

I apologize for not posting this in advance...slipped through my swiss cheese brain!

2016 Annual HOA Meeting
Saturday August 13
9:30am - until
The Vine, Depot Street, Waynesville

I will post official minutes once they become available and sent to me.