Explore North River Road

North River Road - Search Nearby - Added by Mason Boring

One of the most accessible, best mountain back-roads in the Cherokee National Forest. Best free camping along the river. Great swimming holes in the year during warmer months (the river is cold all year!).

If you're looking to get off the beaten path and take the road less traveled, North River Road is your ticket to solitude.

A popular loop for the locals is starting on Tellico River Road, then getting on North River Road to make your way up the mountain all the way to the Cherohala Skyway. Take the Skyway back down the mountain toward Tellico Plains or head on over to Robbinsville, North Carolina.

On North River road, depending on the season, you'll follow the river up the mountain on a dusty gravel road. If there is snow in Tellico, do not attempt North River Road unless you are an experienced winter overlander. (I slid off the mountain back when I was high school so heads up for all you whippersnappers).

In the summer, be on the lookout to find some sweet water holes along the way. If you take the plunge, you better bring your big boy shorts because the river is cold all year.

North River also provides some of the best free camping along the river in the area. There are multiple free spots with no amenities except one campground with bathrooms and picnic tables for a small fee.

Activities

Chillin, Camping, Photography, Swimming, Hiking

Dog Friendly
Forest
Picnic Area
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Wildlife
Swimming Hole

Nearby Lodging

Murphy / Peace Valley KOA

Marble, North Carolina

Sweetwater / I-75 / Exit 62 KOA

Sweetwater, Tennessee

Townsend / Great Smokies KOA

Townsend, Tennessee

From $194/night

Under Canvas Great Smoky Mountains

Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

Community Photos

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Great!

Great easy road trip. Thoroughly enjoyed driving through the area.

Tours

More Tours

Nearby Adventures

Adventure

Camp at North River Campground and Dispersed Campsites

Adventure

Exploring Bald River Falls

Adventure

Hike to Falls Branch Falls

Adventure

Hike to Whiggs Meadow

More Nearby Adventures