Our Area

View of Crabtree FallsWhen it comes to location, beauty, convenience, and quality of life, the Toe River Valley in Western North Carolina can’t be beat! Home to Yancey, Mitchell, and Avery Counties, the Valley is located just an hour from Asheville and Hickory, North Carolina and Johnson City, Tennessee. Charlotte is a close two hours away.

While you can get to major population centers quickly, our region offers much to residents. Major medical facilities are close by, and we have excellent educational facilities. Mayland Community College has locations in Spruce Pine, Burnsville, Bakersville, and Newland and offers a variety of lifelong learning opportunities. Our Avery-Mitchell-Yancey Regional Library features a varied collection of books and videos along with public programs on a regular basis.

There’s also much to do here. If you enjoy the great outdoors, the region offers a variety of hiking trails, whitewater rafting, hunting, fishing, bird watching, and beautiful mountain views. There’a also a lot to do in our towns, with galleries, restaurants, recreational areas, and scheduled events offering residents ways to take a break and unwind or enjoy a night out..

We invite you to check out these attractions and events.

View of mountains from atop Mount MItchell, Eastern America's Highest Summit


Mount Mitchell is the highest point east of the Mississippi River. Located about 30 miles from Burnsville via automobile, the mountain transports visitors into a climate found hundreds of miles to the north in Canada. The views from atop the observation deck are astounding and the cool temperatures bring welcome relief to heat-stressed individuals during the summer. Winter provides a stark contrast, with snow, high winds, and ice common visitors to the mountain. Those who enjoy Old Man Winter will find lots to do here, from sledding and snow hiking to cross-country skiing.

View of mountain from Roan High Bald


Other mountains of note that are close by include Roan Mountain, home to the world’s largest natural rhododendron garden, in Mitchell County near Bakersville (the mountain is about 30 miles from Burnsville), and Grandfather Mountain, the famous attraction with the “Mile High Swinging Bridge” near Linville in Avery County (about 40 miles from Burnsville).

Street View of Mount Mitchell Crafts FairBurnsville is home to the Mount Mitchell Crafts Fair, held each year around the first of August. This event, which celebrates its 58th anniversary in 2014, features over 200 artists and their crafts on display and for sale, along with a variety of food and drink for all. It’s a great way to celebrate the end of summer and enjoy a weekend in the cool mountains. You can learn more about Burnsville at exploreburnsville.com.

There are also a variety of world-class artists in our region, and the Toe River Arts Council can connect you with the specialists in glass, clay, painting, metal, and other art media. The famous Penland School is also nearby, and they feature a gallery of works by both students and instructors.

The Parkway Playhouse has called Burnsville home since 1947 and features productions from April through December each year. The notable Southern Appalachian Reperatory Theater hosts productions in nearby Mars Hill, while Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk offers a schedule of summer theater productions each year.

The Yancey County Chamber of Commerce has more on what to do in our region and the Mitchell County Chamber of Commerce provides suggestions on how you can Craft Your Adventure as either a visitor or a resident.