The Blowing Rock
NORTH CAROLINA'S OLDEST TRAVEL ATTRACTION
The Blowing Rock has been an attraction since 1933, making it North Carolina’s oldest travel attraction. The Blowing Rock is open all year round weather permitting.
The Legend of the Blowing Rock
It is said that a Chikasaw chieftan, fearful of a white man’s admiration for his lovely daughter, journeyed far from the plains to bring her to The Blowing Rock and the care of a squaw mother. One day the maiden spied a Cherokee brave wandering in the wilderness far below and playfully shot an arrow in his direction. He soon appeared before her wigwam and they became lovers, wandering the pathless woodlands. One day, a strange reddening of the sky brought the brave and the maiden to the Blowing Rock. To him it was a sign of trouble commanding his return to his tribe in the plains. With the maiden’s entreaties not to leave her, the brave, torn by conflict of duty and heart, leaped from The Rock into the wilderness below. The grieving maiden prayed daily to The Great Spirit until one evening with a reddening sky, a gust of wind blew her lover back onto The Rock and into her arms. From that day a perpetual wind has blown up onto The Rock from the valley below.
The Origin of the Blowing Rock
During the formation of the Blue Ridge Mountains, strong pressure in the rocks of the Earth’s crust produced many features which we now see at the Blowing Rock. These features include the striped appearance caused by alignment of the crystals in the rock. The pressure also caused many microscopic cracks in the rock. Weathering has widened and enlarged these cracks. Erosion by running water has removed the weathered material to such an extent that only the present form of The Blowing Rock has been left behind.
The Blowing Rock is a huge cliff more than 4,000 feet above sea level that overhangs Johns River Gorge that lies 3,000 feet below. The high upward winds occur due to the rocky walls of the gorge forming a flume through which the northwest wind sweeps with such force that it returns light objects tossed over the void. This air current can cause strange weather patterns, like snow falling upside down.
Rates and Hours
Seniors and Military: $6
Children (4-11): $2
Children 3 and under admitted free.
Group rates apply for groups with 20 or more people.
January through March
Open Thursday through Monday from 9am to 5pm
April & May
Open daily from 9am to 6pm
June through October
Open daily from 9am to 7pm
November & December
Open daily from 9am to 5pm
When you visit The Blowing Rock, be sure to visit one of the gift shops and take a memento of The Blowing Rock home with you. The shops offer a wide variety of souvenirs including t-shirts and sweatshirts, spoons, thimbles, magnets, pens and pencils, plates, mugs, puzzles, hats, pocket knives, stuffed animals, postcards and much more. The Indian Shop offers everything for the little braves and maidens. Shop the selection of Indian vests and headdresses, tomahawks, bows and arrows, rubber band guns and coonskin caps. If you forget to bring along a picnic to The Blowing Rock, just pop into the Snack Shop for a hot dog, nachos, popcorn, ice cream and a cold or hot drink. The Snack Shop also offers gifts and collectibles including garden flags, collectible bears, jams and jellies, baskets, bird houses, bird feeders and more.