Tennessee February 03, 2018
You’ll Want To Plan Your Visit To The Highest Town In Tennessee As Soon As Possible
If you’ve ever been to Tennessee — or if you call it your home! — you know that we’re not wildly known for our high altitudes and ski runs. We’re fairly level, a few mountains to the east (that are gorgeous and beautiful, we know) and plains to the west. We’re wildly diverse and beautifully obtuse, but we thought we’d reach high to the heavens and find the town in Tennessee that sits closest to the clouds. Any guesses…?
Shady Valley is a small town in the far northeastern corner of Tennessee. You wouldn't think it's the highest town with "valley" in its name, but this town is up there.
The town sits between Holston Mountain and the Iron Mountains at a full 2,785 feet above sea level — higher than even Tennessee's most famous mountain town, Gatlinburg.
Shady Valley is comprised of a general store, and elementary school, a few other businesses, and … that's it. Hey — we said it's a small town!
While Shady Valley may be small, there's still plenty there to draw in folks from all over. Every October, they hold their annual Cranberry Festival, which features food, a parade, and, of course, cranberries.
Another thing that draws people from all over the world is the iconic US-421 highway, known for its myriad of curves. Bring your motorcycle and be ready for an exhilarating challenge.
Like many places in the South, Shady Valley has its share of ghost stories. One of the most popular is the ghost of a young girl that is frequently seen and heard off of Orchard Road. It's rumored that she lived in the area and died in an accident with a horse in the 1930's. Spooky!
There's also plenty to do in Shady Valley if you love the outdoors. It's a rare high-elevation wetlands area, leftover from the last ice age.
The wetlands ecology gives Shady Valley a unique mix of wildlife and plants, including peat bogs that the locals use to grow their cranberries (for the festival, of course!).
These are some of the
prettiest sunsets in the state, if you’re looking for a bit of beauty.