Picturesque and sprawling, the Blue Ridge Mountains stretch across 34,000 square miles of the eastern United States and encompass rivers, waterfalls, forests, valleys, summits, lakes, plus national and state parks! Great for all ages, there are so many things to do in the Blue Ridge Mountains, like hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, fly fishing, kayaking, swimming, picnicking, and camping. Wait! Before planning your North Georgia vacation in the southern Appalachians, there are so many interesting facts to discover and prepare you for an educated and scenic getaway.
Fascinating Blue Ridge Mountains Facts
1. Why are the Blue Ridge Mountains blue? This mountain range looks blue due to a chemical from native trees called isoprene that scatters blue light from the sun.
2. Whew, the Blue Ridge Province spans North Georgia, Tennessee, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania!
3. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is actually nestled inside the Blue Ridge Mountain range. Neat, huh?
4. Find the start of the Appalachian Trail in the Blue Ridge Mountains (a segment of the Appalachian Mountains) of North Georgia at Springer Mountain.
5. The Blue Ridge features some of the highest peaks in eastern North America, including Mount Mitchell at a heaven-reaching 6,684 feet — aka the tallest mountain east of the Mississippi River! Note: Brasstown Bald is the highest point in Georgia at 4,784 feet high.
6. Splash at Lake Blue Ridge — a scenic lake with 65 miles of shoreline — in the Chattahoochee National Forest of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
7. Did you know that the Blue Ridge Mountains were estimated to have been created 250 million to 1.1 billion million years ago?!
8. Original native inhabitants of the Blue Ridge Mountains included the Cherokee, Shawnee, Iroquois, and Sioxan Manhouacs.
9. Ranging from 5-65 miles wide, the Blue Ridge Mountains feature relatively narrow ridges at points.
10. Eight national forests are in the Blue Ridge Mountains — including the Chattahoochee National Forest, Nantahala National Forest, Daniel Boone National Forest, Cherokee National Forest, Pisgah National Forest, Monongahela National Forest, George Washington National Forest, and the Jefferson National Forest.
11. Nearly 80% of vascular plants (1,600 species) along the Blue Ridge are wildflowers! Common blooms include spring beauties, bee balms, violets, and bluets.
12. Many arts and crafts were cultivated in the Blue Ridge Mountains, including bluegrass music, woodcarving, quilting, pottery, beadwork, and basket weaving.
13. Some of the oldest rocks on Earth — upwards of 1.2+ billion years in age — can be found along the eastern slope of the Blue Ridge.
14. Travel the Blue Ridge Parkway — the Appalachian region’s tallest and longest road — from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to the Shenandoah National Park on this 469-mile drive in the Blue Ridge.
15. Adorable black bears roam within the Blue Ridge Mountains, so explore the 1,000s of hiking trails with caution and be bear aware.
Experience the Blue Ridge Mountains
Facts are well and good, but the best way to appreciate the Blue Ridge Mountains is to visit them in person. Where is the best place to experience the Blue Ridge Mountains? Blue Ridge in North Georgia! With Georgia Cabins for YOU, you can stay at a local cabin rental for the full mountain experience. Plus, our selection of log cabins in Blue Ridge and Ellijay, GA, keep you close to outdoor fun!
Go geocaching in the Chattahoochee National Forest, swim at Lake Blue Ridge, fly fish in the Toccoa River, purchase local arts and crafts in downtown Blue Ridge, wine and dine with Appalachian flavors, and return to your cozy cabin to relax. Soak in the hot tub, sip moonshine with mountain views, chat by the fireplace, unwind in the outdoor lounge, roast marshmallows around the firepit, shoot pool in the game room, and rest in a plush king suite.
Start planning YOUR Blue Ridge vacation in the North Georgia Mountains to experience this breathtaking and fascinating mountain range today.