A Twist on Traditional Camping

With all of the amenities available in the Reflection Lake Nantahala community, it’s hard to find a reason to leave home. Our beautiful Summit Park provides an elegant pavilion, a fire pit, and access to nearby hiking, fishing, and golfing. But despite the cozy gardens and scenic view of our North Carolina lakeside cabins, sometimes the spirit of adventure calls. Luckily, a new trend in camping lets you explore the great outdoors without sacrificing your creature comforts.


CampingGlamping has been gaining popularity in National Forests and lakeside resorts for years, but only recently has it become a national phenomenon. Glamping, or “glamorous camping,” allows adventurers to enjoy the beauty of nature without forgoing home amenities. Unlike traditional campsites, “glamp grounds” have running water, comfortable beds, and luxury amenities. When researching your destination, you can choose how much your family wants to rough it. For example, some glamping resorts come with TV and internet, while others simply lessen the inconvenience of traditional camping by adding bathtubs and beds to each tent. Glamping resorts span the country, letting families study wildlife and explore forests from North Carolina to Montana in style.

Upscale Your Camp Grounds

Do you prefer the waterfalls and nature trails of Lake Nantahala? Take a page from glamping resorts’ playbooks and transform your North Carolina camping experience. Make a mini-glamping site in your backyard and enjoy the beauty of your Lake Nantahala cabin with your kids. Planning a night of camping with your spouse? Bring wine, tea lights, and a featherbed to transform your lakeside mountain camping trip into a romantic getaway. Get creative with your amenities, and see how different your camping experience can be.

Want more information on Lake Nantahala living? Give us a call for updates on Reflection amenities, nearby camping, and area events.

photo from FreeDigitalPhotos

What’s Your Lake Cabin Style?

cabin architectureWith a stunning backdrop of vivid green, crystal blue, and warm, earthy brown, homes in the North Carolina mountains have a classic Southern vitality. Cabins and lake houses on Lake Nantahala infuse the natural beauty of mountain living with personal style to create elegant, rustic aesthetics. But with so many styles to choose from, customizing your cabin can be harder than hiking the Smokey Mountains. Here are 3 classic cabin decorating aesthetics we can’t help but love.

Country Style Cabins

From Farmstead décor to the classic touches of French Countryside, country inspired cabins capture the natural charm of the forest and fields. Handmade rocking chairs, floral prints, and family heirlooms all add to the timeless elegance of this lakeside cabin style.

Waterfront Living

If you’d rather relax on the dock than explore nature trails, make your mountain life warm and breezy with fresh blues, deep greens, and crisp white tones. Accent your kitchen with carved driftwood furniture and add an aquatic flare to your porch by incorporating sails and anchors into your décor.

Fresh and Modern

Marry the warm hues of the Nantahala National Forest with the crisp, clean aesthetic of modern decorating. Decorate with soft, neutral hues like cream, beige, and gray. Choose simple, smooth furniture in natural woods and brushed metals. Offset eye-catching geometric patterns with smooth wooden frames for a pop of visual interest.

Whether your Lake Nantahala cabin is home or a home-away-from-home, make it your own by mixing and matching your favorite decorating trends from each classic look. Add the final touch to any cabin style with early blooming flowers for the kitchen table and a warm fire in the hearth.

Up and Coming Adventures

Our Reflection community is overflowing with natural beauty, lakeside relaxation, and nature trails for adventurous hikers and campers. But when it comes to events and festivals, we love visiting our neighbors in Bryson City. Nestled against the Nantahala River, the Nantahala Outdoor Center always has a new race, festival, or outdoor adventure to offer their North Carolina neighbors. Take a look at what’s coming up on the Nantahala calendar this spring.

Aquatic Athletics

It isn’t spring yet, but a few adventurous water lovers are diving in early. Next week’s NCR Glacier Breaker kicks off the slalom and wildwater races for the season. Beginner and intermediate kayakers welcome! If you’re a pro at handling a canoe, hold onto your paddle until March 22nd, when the NOC launches the Bank of America US Open for elite kayakers. If you can’t get enough of the Nantahala rapids, sign up for the World Kayak Hometown Throwdown on April 26th.

Running Adventures

running shoesThere’s nothing quite like lacing up your sneakers and enjoying the fresh North Carolina mountain air. Push your limits with the fresh air, inclines, and stunning mountain views of the Hilly Half Marathon and 5K on April 5th. Are you more of a team player? Gather a group of Reflection Lake Nantahala representatives and start training to run a combined 205 miles in the two-day Smokey Mountain Relay at the end of April.

History and Music Festivals

Lake Nantahala residents know that North Carolina is rich with history. Join our Bryson City neighbors in celebrating our heritage at the AT Founder’s Bridge festival April 4-5th. You’ll experience the wonder of the Appalachian Trail (and maybe pick up a few survival skills along the way). If live music and family fun is more your style, you won’t want to miss the Nantahala Outdoor Center Spring Fling April 26-27th. Carpool with your neighbors and experience the local color.

How to Prepare Your Home for Spring

mountain lifeOur North Carolina skies haven’t fully settled into spring, but with the sun peeking through the clouds and warmth promised next month, most of us are ready for the spring season. Winter cabin maintenance is all about battening down the hatches and bunkering down behind fresh weather stripping, new roofs, and refurbished heaters, spring home maintenance focuses on freshening up. Here are 3 ways to prepare your home for spring (even if it hasn’t quite arrived).

  1. Home systems check. You may not need your heating unit once April rolls around, but other home systems will keep your lake house habitable when warm weather hits. Replace air filters and check that your air conditioner is working properly before spring arrives to minimize the discomfort of the seasonal transition. If you suffer from spring pollen allergies, consider investing in a home air purifier to keep the great outdoors outdoors.
  2. Organize a deep clean. It’s easy for homes to get messy during winter in the mountains. Take this opportunity to organize your home and toss the holiday décor you won’t need next year. Clean dirt the lingering the corners from winter hikes in the Nantahala National Forest. Tackle spring-cleaning before spring break hits, and enjoy the well-earned vacation.
  3. Freshen up your home décor. Here comes the fun part. Once your air conditioner hums merrily away and your cabin home smells lemony fresh, it’s time to bring spring to your home style. Hang your favorite Gone Fishin’ driftwood sign or peruse a local art store for home décor pieces unique to Lake Nantahala. If you’re ready to redecorate your home, freshen up your lakeside cabin style with warm, beachy colors on pillows and comforters. Lake lounging season will be here before you know it.

A Wet n’ Wild Winter

The crisp cold of February in Nantahala makes it easy to stay cooped up indoors, but North Carolina has a selection of outdoor adventures for any season. It’s too early to start dreaming of afternoons swimming in Lake Nantahala and relaxing at Lake’s End diner, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy life on the water. Learn about 3 North Carolina water activities you can enjoy in any weather.


lakeEach winter, fishing enthusiasts across the South make their way to North Carolina for the December Kokanee salmon run. But even in February, Lake Nantahala and the Nantahala River provide excellent fishing. As you wait for the warm sunshine of spring, the rivers and lakes are brimming with trout. Invest in a pair of fingerless fishing gloves, find a fishing buddy, and hit the river.

Whitewater Rafting

If you’ve always wanted to try whitewater rafting, there’s no better time than winter. Take a guided tour at the Nantahala Outdoor Center or teach yourself basic survival and rafting techniques and hit the river. You may need to bundle up, but learning to raft or kayak now will give you an edge for summertime rafting adventures.

Hot Springs

Just outside Asheville, a fount of natural peace and beauty swirls lazily through the forest. Resting in the heart of the Appalachian Mountains, Hot Springs, North Carolina gives visitors the chance to rest and rejuvenate. Historically a place of healing, these scenic hot mineral springs make the perfect destination for a late winter excursion. The cool winter air provides a pleasant contrast to the heat of the spring water as you enjoy the natural beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Pisgah National Forest.

Call our office to learn more about our scenic Reflection Village and the adventures waiting at Lake Nantahala.

A Day Away

asheville, ncThe Reflection gated community overlooks the crystal clear waters of Lake Nantahala, nestled in a private copse cradled in the heart of the North Carolina mountains. The vibrancy of nature surrounds the village and docks, offering residents a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of work and responsibilities. But after months cooped up at home, even the cozy cabins in our community begin to look drab. While you wait for the warm sunshine and curious wildlife of spring, explore the world beyond your door with a day trip to Asheville, North Carolina.

Enjoying the Arts

It’s no secret that Asheville is home to a thriving arts community. You can’t walk down the street without stumbling across a live performance, street musician, or crafting demonstration. The creative community is dedicated to preserving the arts and culture of our North Carolina history. You’ll find artistic innovators working alongside craftsmen and improvisation groups performing near major playhouses. If you love to paint in your spare time, find the process of blowing glass fascinating, or simply want to engage and educate your kids, explore the artistic community of Asheville, NC.

A Worthwhile Souvenir

The curios and crafts in Asheville shops are a byproduct of the local artists community. Instead of snagging cute trinkets from a tourist trap, you can discover handmade jewelry, artwork, and home décor. Give your Reflection Lake Nantahala cabin a touch of personal flair by bringing home a hand-carved lamp, a vibrant blown glass ornament, or a quilt sewn by a group of North Carolina crafters.

Experiencing the Nightlife

New York may be the city that never sleeps, but Asheville offers a fun, engaging nightlife with an unexpected funky vibe. Enjoy nights teeming with unique restaurants and bars, local musicians, and street performers while you enjoy the familiar beauty of the scenic Great Smokey Mountains. Asheville hosts festivals year-round, making this artsy North Carolina city the ideal destination for a weekend outing.

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A Romantic Mountain View

Love is in the air. It’s in the morning fog that creeps softly through the forest and the vibrant sunsets that paint Lake Nantahala a watercolor of pink and red. It’s in the cozy fire crackling in your cabin fireplace. It’s in the laughter of friends and family as you celebrate each day living in the Lake Nantahala Village. Whether you’re in love with a wonderful spouse or you’re simply savoring North Carolina mountain life, Reflection Lake Nantahala has the inside scoop on how to enjoy your Valentine’s Day.

A Lake Nantahala Valentine’s Day

sunrise on the lakeResidents of our gated lakeside community have an advantage this Valentine’s Day: there’s no better background for an evening of romance than our stunning mountain views. Plan an elegant candlelight dinner overlooking the lake or cuddle up beside a fire pit and share a mug of hot chocolate. Prefer a professional to cook your dinner? Nantahala, North Carolina has no shortage of renowned restaurants with the perfect ambiance for an evening spent celebrating love. Book reservations and surprise your significant other with a flawlessly prepared Valentine’s Day dinner.

Romance in the Mountains

Not everyone likes to wine and dine. Lake Nantahala brims with opportunities to celebrate the romantic holiday with a loved one who prefers the grit of nature to admiring forests from afar. Plan a romantic trail ride through the Smokies and stop to admire the cascading falls near Lake Nantahala. Pack a picnic dinner and find a scenic overlook to admire the view of the Nantahala National Forest. Single this Valentine’s Day? Gather a group of friends for an outdoor adventure or hike the Nantahala Gorge solo. Enjoy the breathtaking beauty of the mountains in late winter as you savor Valentine’s Day chocolate and snap photos on your phone.

Let It Snow

snow birdWe’ve all suffered cabin fever when cold and snow trap us inside our North Carolina mountain cabins. The feeling of restlessness and listlessness can linger for days, sending us on Lake Nantahala hiking adventures and tours of Bryson City the moment the weather clears. But it turns out that cabin fever is often a powerful motivator. Before you reach the debilitating stages of that “trapped” feeling, cabin fever can push you to concentrate, spend more time with family, and accomplish more tasks than on a normal day. Before you get to the blanket forts and potlucks stage of cabin fever, use the inclement weather as an impetus to succeed. Here are three ways you can use cabin fever to your advantage:

  1. Stay Active. Finding the time to walk around the lake, bike along Wayah Road, or hike up the mountains is difficult during the daily grind. Take that extra boost of bad weather energy and take the kids on a mountain expedition. Wake up early and hike to a fresh overlook. Watch the sunrise with your spouse. The more you move, the warmer you’ll feel—and the longer it will take for cabin fever to strike.
  2. Stay Connected. Storm headed our way? Make a point to catch up with friends and Lake Nantahala neighbors. If you’re feeling particularly energized, take your kids and their friends on a scavenging adventure in the forest. You never know what natural wonders they’ll find.
  3. Stay Organized. Whether it’s work or laundry, staying ahead of schedule not only staves off the cold weather doldrums, it saves a lot of stress when the lethargy kicks in. Use your extra energy to clean out clutter or finish that report you’ve been putting off.

Let the cold weather motivate you this week. Take advantage of Lake Nantahala hiking, Reflection neighbors, and cabin upkeep to beat cabin fever before it strikes.

3 Ways to Beat Cabin Fever

When the chill of the polar vortex started dissipating, we all breathed a sigh of relief. With the return to normal winter temperatures, our daily routines required a few less layers and a lot less fear about frozen pipes. But the cold is creeping back to the mountains, and Lake Nantahala residents are cranking up the heaters and bracing against the chill. Many of us anticipate cuddling on the couch with loved ones, enjoying a crackling fire in the hearth as the chill passes us by. But after several days of staying indoors, even the most devoted bookworm can start to go stir crazy. Reflection Lake Nantahala has compiled our 3 favorite ways to beat cabin fever this winter.

  1. fire pitBuild a fire. The fireplace creates a cozy atmosphere, but an outdoor fire is an excellent change of scenery. Inhale that refreshingly brisk outdoor air as you stay warm and toasty beside a fire pit. Cuddle up with your spouse to enjoy the mountain lake view, or dig out the smores for your kids. Just make sure you check for fire hazards before you strike up the kindling.
  2. Start a hands-on project. Whether you’re building a blanket fort with your kids or painting old furniture for a DIY upcycling project, working with your hands is the best way to beat the winter blues.
  3. Throw a party. Chances are your Lake Nantahala neighbors are going stir-crazy, too. Beat cabin fever by inviting friends to a quiet dinner, a birthday celebration, or an impromptu soiree. Party preparation is another surefire way to engage your mind, and seeing friends gives your brain a boost of feel-good chemicals. If you don’t have time to plan a party, a potluck is a perennial favorite.

Once you’ve beaten the dour-weather doldrums, take a moment to enjoy the gorgeous mountain scenery beyond your front door.

Make Decorating Trends Your Own

patio_01For weeks now, the world has inundated your inbox with ads for gyms, health food, and financing options to help you get on track for your 2014 resolutions. But a fresh start on mountain living doesn’t just mean hiking the Nantahala National Forest trails and lifting weights with a view of the lake. Now that you’ve insulated your pipes and replaced worn weather stripping, it’s time to give your cabin home décor a facelift. Update your North Carolina mountain home with these 2014 decorating trends.

Cabin Colors

The rustic look is in. Soft neutrals like camel and charcoal create a classic cabin aesthetic, whether you own mountain real estate or prefer city life to lounging by the lake. Experts agree that rich brown tones are an up-and-coming color for home décor this spring. Make a bold splash with your neutral palette by adding rich, bright accent colors. Deep violets and vivid greens complement the popular spectrum of grays that took the design world by storm this year, whereas lapis and turquoise accent pieces better offset sturdy brown basics.

Borrowing Bold Styles

This year is all about fluidity, experimentation, and classic elegance. Interior designers start with neutral bases—rich gray walls, taupe sofas, and classic wood finishes—and use interchangeable accent pieces to update each room. Ethnic prints on home accessories, paintings from around the globe, and Western-inspired pillow shams let you transform your room without investing in a trendy floral couch or rustic-chic wallpaper. Try mixing unusual prints with your favorite furniture, contrasting vintage photographs with elegant gold frames, or updating your cozy living room with blue lampshades.

Decorating trends come and go, but personal style is timeless. Experiment with the best and brightest of 2014’s cabin home styles and discover the décor that complements your lakeside life.