mountain highway, named after the Cherokee National Forest in Tennessee and the Nantahala
National Forest in North Carolina; opened on October 12th., 1996 after being in the
planning and construction stages for more than 38 years.
During the 38
years of planning, the only access to Robbinsville was via a crooked gravel Forest Service
road, which took over two hours to travel. Now you can literally drive into the clouds
above Tellico Plains and Robbinsville. Wagon trains have traveled to Robbinsville for
nearly all of the 38 years, to stress the need for a good road.
|There are few places east of the Rockies which boast "mile-high"
overlooks. The Cherohala Skyway is such a place. Conceived in 1958, the
"Skyway" is one of twenty highways deserving of the distinction, National
Scenic Byway, the Cherohala Skyway lives up to this high expectation
||On the North Carolina side of the skyway is one of the jewels of the
Appalachians: Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest, where giant trees are touchable, not just a
page out of an American folk tale. In between are scenic vistas, picnic areas, campgrounds, and
Citico Creek Wilderness Area, a back-country favorite of Backpacker Magazine.
Travelers on the Tennessee side of the highway are treated to the magnificent splendor of the
Cherokee National Forest, including Bald River Falls and the Tellico River, where it is
not uncommon to see a daring kayaker or leisurly fly fisherman making the most of these
grand river resources.
A short hike to Falls Branch Falls and the fragrance of Rhododendron blossoms is an experience to treasure
for a lifetime. Nearby at Indian Boundary Lake, campers, swimmers and bicyclists redefine the term, "outdoor
Maximum elevation along the 52 mile stretch of road is above 5,400
at its highest. On either side of the State line you will be travelling by the whitewater
rapids of mountain streams. Tellico River, North River and Citico Creek on the Tennessee
side; and Santeetlah Creek on the North Carolina side.
About 22 miles East of Tellico Plains, you will travel across a 700 foot bridge at the 4,000 foot
elevation. It is one of the highest major bridges in the Southeast. You will not see a
service station or restaurant on the Skyway, but they are available nearby.
One trip to the Cherohala is only the beginning. Season after
season the Cherohala Skyway is becoming the most talked-about scenic drive in the East.
the pictures to download a large version of each. Please be warned that each picture is
approximately 80K and may take awhile to download.
Pictures are courtesy of John Rhodenizer Photography
P. O. Box 4272
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