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Curtis Creek

Pisgah National Forest, North Carolina
August, 2012
Oil on canvas
18" x 22"

 

 

 

Curtis Creek is in the middle of a tract that was the first National Forest land purchased east of the Mississippi following the Weeks Act of 1911. It is located within the Pisgah National Forest a few miles north of Old Fort, North Carolina (map: Curtis Creek Rd). There is a dirt road that runs next to the creek for a considerable distance as it heads up to the Blue Ridge Parkway. The scene in the painting is about 1/2 mile upstream from the last bridge. I reached it by wading directly up the middle of the stream, climbing boulders and small waterfalls, and crawling beneath tangles of rhododendron. I was hunting for a specific composition, similar to what I had found two years before on Martin Creek in Georgia. Though many stretches of the stream are bordered by the dying hemlocks and rhododendrons that are sadly so common in the mountains these days, it was still a gorgeous location and it was a great pleasure discovering several of the compositions I was looking for. I can’t think of a better way to have spent a day.