Asheville hotels filling up with tourists, folks fleeing Matthew

Many people heading for higher ground to get away from Hurricane Matthew are ending up in Asheville, and hotels in the area are quickly filling up. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

ASHEVILLE, N.C. -- Many people heading for higher ground to get away from Hurricane Matthew are ending up here to the mountains.

Hotels and motels in and around Asheville are running out of rooms quickly. In situations like this, businesses that normally compete for guests work together.

"I've called a few hotels and I'm working with the local hotels who have availability, when they fill up, I call another one, we're just trying to help them as best we can. But yeah, everybody's filling up quickly," Angie Stroup, with Four Points by Sheraton, said.

With fall leaf season just starting, hotels and motels were already filling-up. Add in an approaching hurricane, and Western North Carolina goes beyond being a popular vacation spot.

Among those who needed a room was Graham Macdonald, a resident of James Island near Charleston.

Graham got his 3-month-old daughter, Scarlett, and the rest of the family on the road at 2 this morning to beat the rush.

"I know Asheville's a really nice city, so I thought what better place to wait out the storm than to come up here and visit all the breweries, and go for some walks in the mountains," Macdonald said.

Mike and Dawn Liedtke from Maumee, Ohio drove through Asheville three days ago only to have the approaching storm chase them right back.

Photos of I-26 around 5 a.m. on Wednesday showed traffic already backing-up.

A lot of people are in the area for at least for the next few days until Matthew is gone and the coast is clear.

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