Note: When hiking to this area please be respectful of the site. I wrote about it here in 2015. We head back up and take the trail to the right and head towards Mt Lyn Lowery. If you follow that trail for a little bit you will see a tree with the following signs on it: Yes, there are warnings…make sure you tell someone where you are hiking just in case! It was an unmarked trail with thick overgrowth on either side. It is usually open daily from mid-April through early November from 10 AM to 5 PM. Thank you for sharing. The East Tennessee minister was a volunteer with the Civil Air Patrol for 30 years, leading search and rescue missions for downed planes throughout the mountains. Thank you! The final radar contact was at 6,100 feet and about 1 mile from the crash site. Here on the mountain side, seats and wreckage were scattered all over the steep terrain. Roads open?) On a clear day you can have 50 mil views from the summit of Waterrock Knob. Not only are the views spectacular but the flowers and wildlife are too: The sides of the trail were covered with butterflies when we went, so many it looked like the mountains were moving: Just as you get to the top of Waterrock Knob you will notice a small unmarked trail to the left…you might even miss it if you weren’t looking for it. This is the southernmost Visitor Center on the Parkway. Areas; NC … West and Mountains ... We did this short hike a few weeks ago..You really should take the side trip to Browning Knob and see the old plane crash..Only an extra mile or so. Only a short detour off the beaten path of one of North Carolina's most notable sunset hikes, lies a Cessna 414 plane crash site full of eerie history. On November 24, 1983, a Cessna 414 crashed into the side of Browning Knob in western North Carolina. Do you remember the terrifying crash of USAir Flight 1016 near Charlotte Douglas International Airport? I’m pretty sure there are some ghosts there. Tragic story. He’s Sienna’s sloth and he comes on hikes with us . Waterrock Knob: Our fav trek to find the plane - See 300 traveler reviews, 229 candid photos, and great deals for Maggie Valley, NC, at Tripadvisor. The remains of the wreckage remain at the site, and it is a short hike to them from Waterrock Knob off the Blue Ridge Parkway. Living a simple, creative life in #smalltownusa Bryson City, NC. General questions and FAM tours: Thank you! Two people died in this crash. This blog post covers the hike to the Cessna 414 plane crash deep in the mountains of North Carolina and where to watch one of the most beautiful sunsets in the Blue Ridge … North Carolina Hiking: Cessna 414 Plane Crash & Sunset at Waterrock Knob. Waterrock Knob Trail is the southernmost hiking trail along the Parkway on the way to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, offering fantastic views both east and west. I couldn’t find any engines at the site and after a little research it turns out that they were salvaged soon after the crash. If you’ve never been to Bryson City you need to visit! Both occupants were killed. Copyright Lil Blue Boo © 2021 | Privacy Policy. Hope you prayed for the departed. In 1984, an F-4 Phantom fighter plane crashed into the ridge between Inadu Knob and Old Black. Looking at the satellite view it appears the hike to the plane crash is about a 3-mile round-trip hike, first up to Waterrock Knob and then across the ridge to Browning Knob. Waterrock Knob Photos | Blue Ridge Pkwy Hikes Pack up Grandma's wheelchair and a picnic lunch for this combination of a scenic drive and a short but strenuous hike. Renovating a 1960s ranch house and an old train depot. The plane crashed shortly before 6 p.m. There are multiple viewpoints from the top A trail to the left right before the summit will take you a plane crash site and on to Browning Knob and Mount Lynn Lowry. The Ranger was giving directions to two guys in shorts and tee-shirts. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here: Robin Jarvis is a travel writer and editor for OnlyInYourState.com with a bachelor's degree in Journalism. I was the first person to arrive at this Crash Site in 1983. Someone had mentioned to us that there was wreckage from a plane crash that occurred in 1983 at Browning Knob that was not too far off the Waterrock Knob trail. Waterrock knob. Hike to Smoky Mountains Plane Crash via Waterrock Knob I heard there were a lot of plane crashes into the Smokey Mountains and I decided to find one and hike to it! I usually describe this kind of place as Narnia: It’s not the easiest hike, but very doable if you can climb over fallen trees and jump across some small mud pits: The canopy is pretty thick so the vegetation is mostly ferns, fungi and moss…which I love: There’s a lot of photograph if you take your time: This looked like a waterfall of roots to me….a rootfall? It’s not very far: I wouldn’t ever go alone to the crash, or too close to dusk. This trail is quite a mess. til the very top - great view, especially sunset) To Browning is … Disclosure: I use Amazon affiliate links to help pay for the costs of this website. A short distance from Maggie Valley and at a high elevation, this is a good escape on a hot summer afternoon. Waterrock Knob Overlook is located on a spur road that turns off from the Blue Ridge Parkway at Mile Post 451.2. The aircraft had impacted mountainous terrain at about 6,000 feet msl and 11 miles from the destination. The outdoor adventures found along the parkway include a multitude of trails, visitor centers, and stunning overlooks. I love to hike! The plane was inbound from Chicago on November 24th, 1983. Waterrock Knob has no sleeping or eating options. * * * * * * LYN LOWRY, 6240 Hike Description to Lyn Lowry. What to Do. The route of the hike itself would be pretty straight forward, on paper. The Blue Ridge Parkway spans 469 miles, most of which are right here in North Carolina. The Waterrock Knob Visitor Center is located on a spur road that turns off from the Blue Ridge Parkway at Mile Post 451.2. ???? But the hike is definitley one of my favorites. The Great Smoky Mountains and Western NC Hiking, Painting Time Lapses of Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson. See nearby towns for accommodations. The hike continues for about .7 miles…along the ridge of the mountain…but with a lot of elevation change (the equivalent of about 68 flights of stairs!) Thank you! I created this little PDF with some very basic info that’s easy to print off if you are thinking about hiking to the crash…click here or click the image below to download: Do you have any favorite hikes in the Smoky Mountains? The hike to the plane crash is about a 2.5 mile round-trip hike, first up to Waterrock Knob and then across the ridge to Browning Knob. It is the second highest point on the Parkway, and from here you can get a commanding view of the mountains and valleys of the Plott Balsam and Great Balsam Mountain Ranges. Enter your e-mail address for things to do, restaurants to try and much more! When I reached the top of Waterrock Knob, under rather malicious-looking skies, a 60-year old man with wild gray hair caught me totally by surprise. Waterrock Knob is one of my favorite hikes and it’s always one that I recommend to visitors. Neither the pilot nor passenger survived. When she's not working, she loves to cook with friends and check out new adventures. We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. Rethink that selfie. Located at milepost 451.2 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, this stop is located near the southern terminus of the parkway and is typically much less crowded than the popular hikes in the neighboring Great Balsam Mountains. Ask me how someday? I don’t think a flight plan was filed…which means the pilot may have just been flying by sight and ducking under clouds. Your pictures were fabulous! The Plane Crash: The wreckage of this particular plane crash has been sitting there for 35 years: The story goes that on November 24, 1983, a Cessna 414 was flying from West Chicago to the Jackson County Airport here in the NC mountains. Pisgah is the closest campground. TO PLANE CRASH - take a left at the very top (Browning Knob), otherwise just pick your way through the muddy little side trails - they all meet back up Waterrock knob is a well maintained trail (Rec to come back when it snows! The crash site was eerie, especially knowing that my dad was piloting a similar plane in the 1990s and survived a crash. The only trail to the summit is the tourist trail from the Waterrock Knob parking area. Her love for travel has taken her to many parts of the world. People have made extra trails around rough spots. We hiked to one of them recently: The wreckage of this particular plane crash has been sitting there for 35 years: The story goes that on November 24, 1983, a Cessna 414 was flying from West Chicago to the Jackson County Airport here in the NC mountains. We’d love to know about them! South to north they are: Yellow Face Mountain (6,032'), Waterrock Knob (6,292'), Mount Lyn Lowry (6,240'), and Plott Balsam Mountain (6,088'). Neither of the occupants of the plane survived the crash. Waterrock Knob, Maggie Valley: Address, Waterrock Knob Reviews: 5/5. Read more in my about section. That crash occurred just 11 years after this one. On the Parkway, Mt. From the top, the group continued on to the site of a plane crash from the 1980s, which is conveniently the trail that leads to two more 6000 foot peaks, albeit on non-established trails (Lyn Lowry and Plott Balsam). I’d still like to find some old newspaper articles on the crash if they exist…and know more about the people who died here. Things to Do: Hike to the Top: Take a brisk, steep walk from the visitor center to the top of Waterrock Knob… Get more stories delivered right to your email. Some of the wreckage from this crash remains scattered about the area, with a number of fragments located in an area along the Appalachian Trail about a quarter-mile west of the trail's junction with the Snake Den Ridge Trail. This is an AWESOME day hike for anyone looking to get outside for a few hours and see some special views of the blue ridges, as well as check out the abandoned plane crash of a Cessna 414A that happened back in 1983. Making a Composition Book Art Journal.... Rainbow Heart Wall Hanging - Crayola Model Magic Summer Project, A Universal Shopping Cart and High Chair Cover (A Tutorial and Free Pattern Download). It crashed a little before 6pm at about 6,000 feet. According to reports, the plane was enroute to Sylva on the night of November 24, 1983 in some undefined precipitation and with low-lying cloudcover. The summit of Waterrock Knob is obvious. The pilot's blood alcohol level was 0.4‰. Past the Knob the trail continues about half mile to the wreckage of a plane crash from the 80's. The following is a trail journal of a 36.5-mile day hike in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, connecting the following trails: Appalachian Trail, Welch Ridge, Cold Springs Gap, High Rocks, Bone Valley, and Hazel Creek Trails. Love North Carolina? It’s .5 miles to the plane crash site which is pretty popular. The trail is obviously used often based on the wear but we didn’t see anyone while we were hiking: Spraypainted yellow dots help to mark the trail. I never knew that there are close to 54 plane crash sites located in the Smoky Mountains. The people and erosion plus the lack of trail maintenance leaves it a muddy, root filled mess. You'll receive your first newsletter soon! 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May 29, 2018 Rob H. Amazing view I … It was heading to Sylva, just 11 miles from the crash site, but unfortunately they did not make it. To learn more, keep reading here. I noticed it as a gap in the tall grass at first. Meteorological conditions at the crash site included low clouds and precipitation. The plane crash, though morbid, was a cool site to see. Waterrock Knob, the tallest peak in the Plott Balsam Mountains, can be reached via a short summit trail from the scenic Waterrock Knob Overlook. If we hike to the top elevation is 6,300 feet. I crave the forest, the smells, the beauty and especially the healthy feeling of being outdoors. To get here first drive to the visitor center at Waterrock Knob, (one of our favorite places to bring visitors too. But, as far as we know, there’s only one small plane crash site in North Carolina – and it’s hidden deep in the woods on a trail that runs along a ridge. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. With an abandoned plane crash from 1983 and views starting from the parking area, Waterrock Knob is a must-stop site along the Mountains-to-Sea trail. The summit of Lyn Lowry is one of several small humps about 200 feet west of the memorial cross. Stay at our historic Sixty-One Park Farmhouse located right in downtown! Explore the visitor center and learn more about the site and the region – open seasonally; Watch a majestic sunrise or sunset as light dances across the mountains You are at Browning Knob as soon as you start to see the views again: Once over to Browning Knob, you’ll notice another small unmarked trail to the left. This peak (6,292 feet) is the 16th highest mountain in the Eastern United States and the the 15th highest of the 40 mountains in North Carolina over 6,000 feet. — Jerry Mattox, [footer_backtotop href="#top" text="Return to Top"] The two people aboard the plane both died. youtube/FloridaTrailblazer. Trails: Waterrock Knob Trail Picnic Tables: 5. You will receive your first newsletter soon. She's lived in the Carolinas for nearly three decades and currently resides in Charleston. Neither the pilot nor passenger survived. Rough but worth it. It is the highest peak in the Plott Balsams and is the 16th-highest mountain in the Eastern United States.. Head down that trail about 100 feet and you should see the plane in the distance down the hill. To the left, I thought, this must be the way to Browning Knob! It crashed a little before 6pm at about 6,000 feet. Any and all posts on this site may contain affiliate links. - Cause: Today the wreckage is still on Browning Knob and is a reminder of the many dangers that are present in the mountains of Western North Carolina. Here’s the story; on November 24, 1983, a Cessna 414 was flying from West Chicago to the Jackson County Airport here in the NC mountains. As I’m getting older I don’t do it as much as I should and your pictures helped me see things I don’t see much of anymore. “Are you talking about the plane crash site?” After hiking up to Waterrock Knob, I overheard a Ranger standing in front of a narrow path to the left. Waterrock Knob is a must-stop along the Blue Ridge Parkway.Located at Milepost 451.2 (just 18 miles from the end of the Parkway), it features the last hiking trail along the Parkway as you travel toward the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.This peak (6,292 ft.) is the 16th highest mountain in the Eastern United States - and the 15th highest of the 40 mountains in North Carolina over 6,000 feet. You can do anything when you put your mind to it! Photo from the plane crash hike I took last week. 300 Reviews #2 of 13 things to do in Maggie Valley. The cause of the crash was determined to be a combination of weather conditions/poor visibility and alcohol (the pilot’s blood alcohol level was 0.04%). Thank you! The plane could have made it over the mountain if it had just been about 150 feet higher. Thank you for reading! The two men onboard didn't survive the crash. Do you know of other crashed planes hiding in the wilderness of North Carolina? Waterrock Knob. Waterrock Knob is a mountain peak in the U.S. state of North Carolina. Of these four peaks only one, Waterrock Knob, has a maintained trail to the summit. The first half of the hike is straight down the ridge and then you have to hike back up the spine of the connecting knobs. The mountain is a popular destination with tourists and amateur hikers, as it is easily accessible from the parkway. Mountains. Haha….that’s Sam! Waterrock Knob [Suggest Edits] 8 votes. Some people hike for exercise; others are looking for views or waterfalls.Jeff Wadley hikes for plane crashes. The remains of the plane are still scattered along the hillside making it a super neat place to explore and photograph. Click here are a few of my favorite places near Bryson City. PLANE DOWN — A plane crash that occurred in November 1983 is now the end-point for an off-beat hike that starts at Waterrock Knob, one of WNC’s most popular outdoor destinations. 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