View Full Version : Big South Fork Indian Ruins

Gary Weaver
02-16-2007, 08:24 PM
Not sure if cliff dweling Indian Ruins is classified as a Ghost Town or not. On the Tennessee Kentucky border is a National Park called Big South Fork Recreation area. WOW this is one of the nicest unspoiled places on earth. Camp ground is NICE very nice with water and electricity and heated showers. Directions to hiking trailes are not correct, no road signs, existing signs are wrong, what a nightmare. Park ranger is no help with direction other than to give us a map that got us close to where we wanted to go but it will still take us 2 hours of back tracking driving up and down roads all over the place trying to find where we wanted to go. We were headed to the hiking trail and Cliff dwellings it took us 2 hours to find it we even stopped at a church to ask directions and they didn't know either. Turns out the church is only about 3 miles from where we were going. The very bad gravel road ended at a very NICE asphult park area. At the north edge of the parking area is a look out point and a stairway that goes down and down and down. The stairway ends at a landing where you take a ladder down about 12 feet to a cliff rock ledge. There is another 20 ft ladder that goes down from the rock ledge to the ground. At the bottom you are on the trail. Go left or west 2.5 miles to the Cliff Dwelings. If you walk straight ahead from the ladder or trail you come to the river about 200 feet ahead. River is probably 50 ft across and crystal clear with kayaks going by from time to time. Water looks like it is 3 to 4 ft deep with fish plain as day every where in the water. Fish look like trout to me most are over a foot long. People put their kayak in up stream east of here about 15 miles. They kayak down stream about 40 miles. This is called a class 5 river but the day I was there I swear it was no more than class 2 the water was down. I could see where the water had been up at least 30 ft higher. Hike to the cliff dwelings is an easy walk on the path. Cliffs are probably 60ft tall you can climp up into the ruins they are still in very good condition. The trail crosses a stream and circles around and back where we started from it is a 7 mile hike. Back up the ladders and stairway to the car and drive back to the camp gound. WOW this is a nice place and not a tourest trap. NO croud and very few people. This is the absolute nices wilderness area I have ever be to in the entire united states. I love it out west too, ZION national park is great, Grand Canyon is great too. Canyon lands, needles, arches, Yellowstone, death valley, RMNP, Yosmite, are all great too. I use to live in Phoenix and went exploring ever weekend. I hope to return to Arizona soon I am looking for a place to live maybe Pine AZ, Showlow, Heber, or Prescot.