Friends of Pisgah Gorge
"There are ____ down in the Gorge."

Info & FAQs

     Pisgah is Hebrew for mountain top, and the word is found in the Bible five times, namely Numbers 21:10, Numbers 23:14, Deuteronomy 3:27, Deuteronomy 4:49, and most notably Deuteronomy 34:1 when Mose went up Mount Nebo to view the Promised Land since he was not allowed to cross the Jordan River.  Interestingly the geography is similar around Pisgah Alabama, where there are good views over the Tennessee River.  Although it is not know where Moses was buried there is cave known as Moses' Tomb near Pisgah, Alabama.

     During the Trail of Tears force removal several Cherokee escaped and hid out in Pisgah Gorge.  Those that were recaptured were held in a unique karst topology geographic feature now known as the Indian Penitentiary, because there was only one opening that needed to be guarded.  At least one Cherokee was never captured and has been reported to still be seen in The Gorge; similar stories exist for Little River Canyon.

     There are rumors of cave full of gold somewhere in or near Pisgah Gorge while other such caves are purported to be located on Tater Knob and in Paint Rock Valley.  Perhaps one of the clues to its location is a rock with a three legged turtle carved on it.

     In 2009 a local searching for Indian artifacts in cliff shelters fell to his death.  Other injuries or deaths from falls around this area usually involve non-locals, somebody doing something irresponsible especially when under the influence of a mind altering substance, and those that come to rescue/recover them.

     When the water level is right, practically a flood, Pisgah Gorge is a world class whitewater kayaking destination where the river drops almost 700 feet over about 6 miles not counting a couple miles of flat water across Jones Cove, although 500 feet of the total drop occurs along a 2 mile section in the middle of the run that begins with a 20 to 30 feet waterfall.

     There is an isolated population of eastern hemlock, Tsuga canadensis (L.) Carrière, found in Pisgah Gorge.  Where local some local old-timers still call it spruce.  Only a few populations such as those in and near the Sipsey Wilderness Area are further south, and hopefully the isolation will protect them from the Hemlock woolly adelgid, Adelges tsugae Annand, that was accidentally introduced, and is now killing hemlock trees in much of the southern Appalachians where the hemlock populations are contiguous.

     Modern GPS maps still contain an error that leads to bridge cross the Gorge than no longer exist.  A hiking group once got lost on an exploratory hike while using a map 50 years out of date and expecting to find and use this bridge as an alternate end point for their hike.  On the Saturday before Memorial Day they usually commemorate that hike by repeating the route that now ends at the previously mentioned waterfall that is just downstream of the where the bridge was located.  The hike is only 2 mile long, but it is so strenuous that it takes these avid hikers about 4 hours to complete.  Barefoot locals have went with them in some years, but normally the only way for anyone else to go is with permission of the hike leader.

FAQs are TBD
Mailing Address:  Friends of Pisgah Gorge, 17229 Ala. Hwy. 71, Pisgah, Alabama 35765
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