TNC §3: Cross Mountain (TN-91) to Wilbur Dam Road

Tennessee-North Carolina §3 spans 16.1 miles. Parking is available for two mileposts.

Mp 0.0/16.1: TN-91

Locate: {36.48115, -81.96035}

Orient: The AT crosses TN-91 at Cross Mountain Road, next to Osborne Farm, 3.6 mi southwest of US-421 in Shady Valley and 18.3 mi northeast of US-19E in Elizabethton.

Park: Room for a dozen cars in lot on southeast corner of intersection; enter from Cross Mountain Road; kiosk. Room for an additional half dozen cars outside lot in pull-off adjacent to fence along VA-91. Room for 3–4 qualified cars in handicapped lot on northwest corner of intersection; enter from Osborne Lane.

Mp 16.1/0.0: Wilbur Dam Road

Locate: {36.32858, -82.11157}

Orient: The AT crosses Wilbur Dam Road in Iron Mountain Gap 9.2 mi southeast of US-19E at US 91 in Elizabethton. From US-19E: follow TN-91 north for 3.0 mi to right onto Blue Springs Road; follow Blue Springs Road for 0.9 mi straight onto Steel Bridge Road; follow Steel Bridge Road for 0.9 mi straight onto Wilbur Damn Road, at bridge over Watauga River; continue on Wilbur Damn Road for 4.4 mi to parking area on left. There is a sign for the AT on the west side of the road about 100 yd north of the parking area.

Park: Room for a half dozen cars in the wide and paved shoulder along the east side of the road; not signed. Overflow parking looks possible along the wide grass shoulder abutting the paved shoulder. The AT coincides with Wilbur Damns Road on a diagonal of about 75 yd. The parking area is at the southeast end of this diagonal, where the northbound footpath meets the road. At each end of the crossing, there are a few steps in the roadside embankment that mark the footpath.

Note: The Watauga Dam visitors center is 0.8 mi farther south along Wilbur Dam Road; restrooms, water, picnic tables.