Have you heard of the Shadow of the Bear phenomenon that happens every fall in the Cashiers Highlands area? If you haven’t, you’ve come to the right place to learn why this phenomenon happens, when it occurs, and where to see it. Every fall, a unique shadow appears across Whiteside Mountain, forming the shape of a bear. Stay with Highlands Vacation Rentals and witness the elusive Shadow of the Bear for yourself!
What is the Shadow of the Bear?
The Shadow of the Bear is a one-of-a-kind phenomenon that only happens in North Carolinas Blue Ridge Mountains! The effect happens when the autumn sun sets behind Whiteside Mountain and hits the peaks perfectly to create the shadow.
When to See the Shadow of the Bear
The Shadow of the Bear is best visible from mid-October through early November from 5:30-6 pm. Fall offers the perfect backdrop for this natural phenomenon when the shadow emerges along the colorful fall foliage. The bear is only visible 30 minutes a day, so finding your viewing spot well in advance is highly recommended!
The shadow also reemerges in mid-February through early March. This is a great way to witness the phenomenon away from the fall crowds!
Where to See this Natural Phenomenon
The best place to see the bear shadow is Rhodes Big Overlook, along Highway 64 between Cashiers and Highlands. The road is surrounded by the rocky cliffs of Whiteside Mountain, offering the ideal vantage point of the shadow and foliage. There is minimal parking available across the road from the overlook.
This is a busy highway, so we ask that you be careful when parking, crossing the road, viewing, and exiting the area. This overlook gets crowded fast, so arriving at least an hour early is recommended. Make sure to have your camera ready to snap some memorable photos!
Plan a North Carolina Fall Getaway
The Shadow of the Bear can only be seen on sunny days, but don’t worry if you are met with rainy weather; there are still plenty of things to keep you entertained! Highlands Vacation Rentals offers the perfect vacation rentals for your fall getaway in North Carolina. Whether you are looking for a one-bedroom cottage or a spacious four-bedroom home for the family, we have something for everyone. Witness this one-of-a-kind natural phenomenon in Highlands, NC!