Brilliant maple leaves greet a duo of motorcyclists on the Blue Ridge Parkway near Rough Ridge. (Photo by Jim Morton)

Motorists can expect heavier traffic than usual on the Parkway this weekend, as peak color continues its steady approach. To let visitors soak up every minute of autumn splendor, Grandfather Mountain is extending its hours this weekend. On Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 10 and 11, the park will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., weather permitting.