The Hunger Games: Dupont State Recreational Forest
Bridal Veil Falls, where a certain Katniss ran to while escaping the giant fireball. ©Geek Crusade

With just 9 days to go before The Hunger Games: Catching Fire opens in Singapore, it’s time to tell you about the very special trip we took to Asheville, North Carolina. Or perhaps we should refer to Asheville by its true claim to fame – a key shooting location for the first installment of The Hunger Games.

It was one of the stops on our epic geek trip to the US back in July (check out our posts on our stops at The Walking Dead shooting locations and the Breaking Bad shooting locations). There were two main shooting locations for the film in and around Asheville – the Henry River Mill Village a.k.a. District 12 and Dupont State Recreational Forest, where much of the actual kill-slash-stab Games were filmed.

The cast and crew were based in Asheville for several months, so quite a few spots in town became associated with them. For example, the Hotel Indigo Asheville Downtown, where many of the cast members stayed. Fans also started flocking to Early Girl, a well known brunch place, because Josh Hutcherson a.k.a. Peeta often had breakfast there. Gillian and I ate there too, where a waitress confirmed with a grin that they saw Hutcherson almost every day.

But let’s tell you about the Dupont State Recreational Forest, a 40 sq km tract of land that is great for cycling, hiking and just enjoying the sights and sound of natures. Key scenes were filmed at two places in Dupont: Triple Falls and Bridal Veil Falls. Here’s a quick look at the former:

After hiking into the forest, you have to walk down this looong flight of stairs…

The Hunger Games: Dupont State Recreational Forest
©Geek Crusade

…in order to come here: the spot where Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) runs along the river, following the trail of Peeta’s blood. Geek factor notwithstanding, it is a stunning sight to see.

And we can’t be too sure of it, but we reckon this is the spot where she finds him hidden in the mud.

The Hunger Games: Dupont State Recreational Forest
©Geek Crusade

Next, we trekked to another stunning sight – Bridal Veil Falls. If you remember, there’s an entire sequence where Katniss runs from the huge fire engulfing the forest. She then jumps into a pool next to a waterfall, before the rest of the tributes suddenly come along.

The Hunger Games: Dupont State Recreational Forest
The pool that Katniss dives into ©Geek Crusade

Bridal Veil Falls empties directly into this pool but we were told that ironically, on the day itself, there wasn’t enough water in it. So the crew had to resort to filling it themselves. But the rest of Bridal Veil Falls is, quite simply, magnificent.

Look out for our next post on The Hunger Games shooting locations, where we take a trip to Henry River Mill Village and talk to the two very enterprising ladies behind The Hunger Games Unofficial Fan Tours.

In the meantime, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire opens in Singapore on November 21.

Would you ever fancy a trip to Asheville to check out The Hunger Games shooting locations? Leave us a comment below and tell us your thoughts!

Most of the images in this post were taken with a Nikon 1 V2