Posted November 20, 2012
By BRANDON LUMISH
LAKE LURE, N.C. — Driving in some of the most mountainous and windy roads in the United States, the trek around Lake Lure could be considered a scary one.
“You just get used to driving around here,” said Tina Base, a long-time resident of Lake Lure. “It’s such a small town that I feel like I know every crevice and angle on each turn around the mountain.”
Just more than 1,000 people inhabit the town of Lake Lure year round.
The man-made lake is approximately 720 acres long, containing 21 miles of shoreline.
“People come to our town especially during the summers just for the lake,” said Base. “The lakes beautiful and our town just becomes such a family place with the great weather each summer.”
The lake is considered to be one of the biggest man-made lakes in the United States. It is located in the western part of North Carolina is in Rutherford County. The closest nearby city is Asheville, about 28 miles, but will take about 40 minutes to get there because of the curving roads. Charlotte is 91 miles or just under two hours average drive time.
Water activities at the lake are a big attraction. During the summer, people visit the two beaches in town to water ski, swim or jump off the huge slide that comes down from one of the houses.
“Its awesome for my two little kids to have this huge slide in the middle of town. They absolutely love it!” said Erica Owens, who is from Miami but visits Lake Lure with her family each summer.
Lake Lure is home to two famous 18-hole golf courses. Each course has lakeside views and many shots that have to be hit over water.
“The golf courses are such a challenge,” Ron Dikeman, a resident of Lake Lure. “If this town was bigger, I really think there would be a professional tournament here.”
During the winters at Lake Lure, it’s cold, and there will usually be snow.
“When it snows, it stinks because with the winding roads, you really can’t leave your house,” said Terry Bittle, who has lived in Lake Lure his whole life. The winters are usually overall mild at Lake Lure. However, and in the past five years, it has only rained once per winter.
Lake Lure is home to Chimney Rocks Mountain.
This mountain is located right outside the city of Lake Lure and is considered a town of its own.
About 100 people inhabit the town of Chimney Rock.
When visiting Lake Lure, tourists should visit this famous mountain. The mountain has a 75-mile view, different hiking paths for people of all ages, a 404-foot waterfall.
“Chimney Rock is the perfect place to take the whole family,” said Bryce Town, who has an off-season home in Lake Lure. “My oldest son and I will go on the intermediate hiking path, while my husband and my other two children go on the easy hiking trail.”
The Lake Lure Inn & Spa founded in 1927 is a popular destination spot for tourist visiting Lake Lure. The spa is at the heart of the city, with a beach right outside and beautiful lake views. Guest can get beachside apartments or even rent out a cabin.
Portions of the spa lobby contains the original antiques from 1927. The Veranda restaurant, which also began in 1927, is located at the first floor of the Lake Lure Inn & Spa and is even visited by residents of the town.
“Lake Lure Inn is the trademark of this town,” Base said. “Anyone that comes to this town sees it and usually quickly falls in love.”
Filming a major movie at Lake Lure has been a popular choice for producers and directors. “Dirty Dancing,” “The Last of the Mohicans,” “My Fellow Americans,” “A Breed Apart,” “Firestarter” and “Thunder Road” have all had scenes filmed at the town. The reality shows HGTV Dream Home filmed a show in Lake Lure as well.
IF YOU GO
- Lake Lure Town Hall address: P.O. Box 225. Lake Lure, N.C. 28746
Lake Lure Inn & Spa
- 2771 Memorial Hwy., Lake Lure, N.C. 28746
- 828-625-2526 for reservations
Lake Lure Tours
- 2930 Memorial Hwy., Lake Lure, N.C. 28746
Chimney Rock Mountain
- Chimney Rock Management. PO Box 39. Chimney Rock, N.C. 28720
- 828-625-9611 for reservations. Open 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.