The Ashevillager is on the berry picking trail this summer. Asheville has so much to offer during the summer and U-Pick is among the most rewarding for families. So far we visited Long Branch, it’s is remote but well worth the trek. Be ready for bumpy dirt roads with some deep ditches on the last leg of the drive. I’d say it took about 45 minutes from Patton Avenue. Regardless, it’s a great place to bring your kids to pick organic: raspberries in July, blueberries in August, and apples coming up this fall. Kids will have first -hand experience of how apples and berries grow and can take them home to bake amazing pies.
Long Branch is laid back! They are open daily and work on the honor system. So Long Branch is a little oasis from city life. When you enter the barn to sign in, there are buckets and laminated maps of Long Branch’s hilly and wild landscape. In co-op style, there is a donation box on the sign in book and they recommend paying the going rate which was $3.50 per pint for blueberries. They have recycled, or used, clear plastic berry containers you can take with you if you need them. If you have something better suited, bring it.
The best way to find Long Branch is to call and ask for directions from Leicester Highway and find out what the fruit is doing at that time. Check out their waterfall and hiking trails. There are wonderful views of the Buncombe County’s Newfound Mountains all around the land. For more info and phone number check out their site: http://www.longbrancheec.org/index.html.
Long Branch is a great place to adventure with your kids and the berries are delicious. We will be checking out other apple picking places to enjoy this fall cause getting out in Asheville amidst the changing leaves is about as good as it gets!