The Sequatchie Valley Affords a Wonderland for Flying Adventures

Do you like scouting your subsequent nice flying vacation spot, discovering the airstrip that takes you into the center of your subsequent out of doors journey? Southeast Tennessee was made for flying as a technique to immerse your self within the outdoor, and the Sequatchie Valley provides a number of alternatives for on- and off-runway adventures.

Often known as Tennessee’s Nice Valley, the practically straight 150-mile-long, 3- to 6-mile-wide geological divide—bordered by the Cumberland Plateau to the west and Walden Ridge to the east—is an out of doors playground for the whole household. The valley and its parallel mountain ridges provide a number of the nation’s greatest mountaineering, climbing, hang-gliding, fishing, {golfing}, off-roading, and different leisure actions.

The Lay of the Land

The Sequatchie Valley area consists of the agricultural-rich backside lands of the valley—known as an anticline due to its compression-related geological origins—and as much as 1,500-foot-high forested plateau escarpments that type its east and west borders. Well-known for its sandstone boulders and cliffs, the rock formations alongside the valley’s steep slopes attraction to conventional, sport, and boulder climbers. There are 17 public climbing areas within the area together with the famend Tennessee Wall and Stone Fort crags.

Because of the preservation efforts of the Southeastern Climbers Coalition (SCC), the Entry Fund, a nonprofit climbing advocacy group, and others, a brand new public climbing space, Woodcock Cove, is now open. Situated on the western rim of the Sequatchie Valley, west of Dunlap, the 64-acre property managed by the SCC features a mile-long sandstone cliffline that ranges from heights of 30 to 90 toes, and a 75-foot freestanding sandstone tower. These scaling these rock faces soak up breathtaking views of the river and valley.

A Paddler’s Delight

Quite a few rivers and lakes in and across the Sequatchie Valley invite paddlers to check their waters. [Photo: Unsplash: McKayla Crump]

The Sequatchie River originates simply north of Pikeville on the “Head of the Sequatchie” spring and travels for 116 miles south earlier than reaching the Tennessee River close to the Alabama state line. A pure blueway, the river provides sluggish and simple paddling that’s good for kayaks, canoes, and stand-up paddleboards. With public entry websites from Pikeville at Outdated Mill Street to Whitwell within the south, paddlers can journey from 3 to 16 miles on already mapped blueway routes.

The one reported hazards on these routes are an occasional log jam, additional north the place the river is slim, and a low-head dam at Ketner’s Mill close to Whitwell. Paddlers ought to give a large berth to this dam, which has been identified to trigger drownings. When paddling downstream, exit the river upon recognizing the mill and portage your watercraft effectively previous the dam’s undertow and lethal backwash earlier than placing again in.

Out of doors Diversions

Mountain climbing and paddling are simply the tip of the spear with regards to leisure alternatives. The world can be identified for its miles of climbing and biking trails, hang-gliding, and different out of doors sports activities.

Fall Creek Falls, for instance, is a well-liked climbing, tenting, pure swimming, and tubing vacation spot, and it has one of many highest waterfalls within the japanese U.S. A 40-minute drive from the valley’s central level at Dunlap, the state park additionally provides a championship golf course and an 85-room lodge with a restaurant and convention and assembly areas that overlook Fall Creek Falls Lake. With three mountain bike trails and greater than 56 miles of climbing, the park is a favourite for locals and guests alike.

To not be outdone, close by South Cumberland State Park is Tennessee’s largest state park. It contains 30,845 acres and has 90 miles of climbing trails and a number of the greatest backcountry tenting within the area.

If golf is your sport, journey to the top of the valley to Crossville—often called the Golf Capital of Tennessee—which provides 9 expertly designed golf programs with a variety of handicap talent ranges, all inside a 20-mile radius.

One of the best view of the valley is arguably from above. A number of hang-gliding and paragliding launch areas dot the valley’s ridgelines. Flying Camp Paragliding has paragliding instruction and solo certification, and tandem flights for novices; whereas Tennessee Tree Toppers (TTT), a nonprofit and chapter member of the U.S. Cling Gliding and Paragliding Affiliation, caters to affiliation members. Visiting pilots could buy a 30-day TTT membership choice.

Those that desire a extra thrilling expertise—and a extra fleeting view of the valley—can attempt skydiving. The Chattanooga Skydiving Firm, situated at Marion County Airport-Brown Area (KAPT), provides tandem jumps, teaching programs, and enjoyable jumps for certificated skydivers over the Sequatchie Valley.

Care to enhance your marksmanship? The Useless Zero Taking pictures Vary in close by Spencer provides coated out of doors sporting clay lanes, skeet/entice areas for shotguns, archery (3D archery) lanes, and rifle/pistol bays.

If horseback driving is your factor, the Tennessee Dude and Visitor Ranch in scenic Dunlap is certain to please. The ranch provides two- to seven-day customized holidays, the place every visitor is assigned a horse. Trip stays embrace in a single day lodging, farm-to-table meals, day by day path driving, Bible examine, and instruction within the cowhand lifestyle. 4- to six-hour ranch and experience day packages are additionally accessible.

Off-roading on mountain bikes or four-wheelers is a well-liked exercise within the valley. [Unsplash: Marcello Gamez]

Off-roading is one other leisure choice. Situated on the south finish of the valley, close to South Pittsburg, the Journey Off Street Park has greater than 120 off-road trails, and tent and RV tenting. The most recent off freeway car (OHV) trails to open within the area are situated in Grundy County on the Cumberland Plateau, a roughly 45-minute drive from Dunlap. Coalmont OHV Park, which was set to open in June 2022, will provide 1,346 acres of trails and be the primary city-owned OHV park within the state.

Historical past

Along with recreation, the Sequatchie Valley has a wealthy historical past to discover, from its Native American previous—the valley was truly named for a Cherokee Chief, Sequachee—to its coal-mining days. In its heyday, the Chattanooga Iron and Coal Company owned and mined 16,000 acres of coal land close to Dunlap, using 350 folks. The Coke Ovens Museum close to Dunlap, which is listed on the Nationwide Register of Historic Locations, preserves the remnants of 268 beehive coke stone ovens. Within the early 1900s, the ovens transformed mountain coal into industrial coke, which was used to smelt iron ore. The museum homes the state’s largest assortment of regional historic coal mining images, and its wooded grounds witnessed the compelled westward migration of Native Individuals within the 1800s, often called the Path of Tears. The world can be well-known for its moonshine manufacturing in the course of the Prohibition period (1920-1933). An historic nonetheless is on show on the museum.

Native Occasions & Festivals

September 30-October 2Fall PageantPikeville
October 1Cycle Sequatchie Century & 3 Mountain Problem, Sponsored by The FieldsDunlap
April 2023Nationwide Cornbread PageantSouth Pittsburg
Might 2023Valley FestDunlap
Might 2023Songwriters PageantDunlap
Test occasion listings on-line for updates.

This text was first printed within the 2022 Southeast Journey Information of FLYING Journal.


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