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Sky Valley

Golfing

SKY VALLEY GOLF CLUB

  • Golf Shop call (706) 746-5302 for tee times

Zip Lining

HIGHLANDS AERIAL PARK
Highlands Aerial Park-Zipline and ecological park. Just outside of Sky Valley on N. 106. Adventures for all ages. (828) 526-8773.

Tubing

SCALY MOUNTAIN OUTDOOR CENTER
Scaly Mountain Outdoor Center (828) 526-3737
Take NC 106 towards Highlands.
Center is 3.5 miles east of Sky Valley
Snow tubing, kiddie slope, ice skating and dry tubing ​
Open for summer tubing, trout fishing, and also for gem mining for the kids. Outdoor fun goes on everyday beginning at 10AM and until 7PM on Friday and Saturdays, and to 6PM on the remaining days.

Horseback Riding

Dillard House Stables (706) 746-2038
Full Stride Farm, Clayton, GA (706) 782-1638

Hiking Trails & Waterfalls

Estatoah Falls: right in Sky Valley, about one mile from the timeshare office, roars a 100 foot waterfall! From the time share office, turn right on Tahoe Lane. You will pass timeshare units on your left, the lake and golf course. Follow this road to the parking area. Picnic while you view the falls.
Hiking right in Sky Valley. The trail begins at Estatoah Falls; it follows Mud Creek for a mile. (2 mile round trip). Easy, shady hike with splendid views of Mud Creek whitewater. Warning: do not try to return on GA 246. There is no place to walk along that road.
GUIDE TO NORTH GEORGIA WATERFALLS
HIKING ADVENTURES – HAPPY TRAILS GUIDEBOOK
ROAD TRIP WITH WATERFALLS

  • Depart Sky Valley north on NC 106 towards Highlands, NC (10 miles away)
  • Stop for the view at the Osage Mountain Vista
  • Stop at Glen Falls–3 falls dropping 640 feet, foot trail is very steep, 1 mile hike
  • Lunch, shop, get coffee at Buck’s on Main Street in Highlands
  • Depart Highlands on US 64 West towards Franklin, NC (15 miles away)
  • US 64 follows the Callasaja River Gorge a narrow winding road
  • Stop at Bridal Veil Falls right on US 64 (3 miles from Highlands)
  • Stop at Dry Falls parking and take a short walk to this amazing falls (3.5 miles from Highlands)
  • Stop at Bust Your Butt swimming hole (6 miles from Highlands)
  • Stop at Callasaja Falls, cascading 250 feet, requires a short walk (8.75 miles from Highlands)
  • Return to Sky Valley by taking US 441 South to GA 246. Need more “things to do ideas” stop at the Smokey Mountain Visitor Center on US 441 (828) 369-9606.

Whitewater Falls Recreation Area (828) 524-6441 (31 miles, 1 hour driving)

  • Depart Sky Valley north on NC 106 towards Highlands, NC
  • Turn right on US 64 East you will go through Cashiers then
  • Turn right on NC 281 in Sapphire go south to the entrance
  • 411foot waterfall over the Blue Ridge Escarpment
  • Waterfall overlook trail
  • Access to the Foothills trail
  • Restrooms and picnic tables
  • Parking fee
  • Return on SC 107 which becomes NC107 to Cashiers to create a driving loop
  • New Gorges NC State Park is just beyond Cashiers on US 64 East.

Whitewater Rafting

Southeastern Expeditions: Section IV has many rapids. Motor tow across 2 mile lake. Section III trip ideal for novices. Outpost 7 miles east of Clayton on Hwy. 76. Reservations. (706)782-4331 or (800)868-7238.

Nantahala Outdoor Center: Whitewater rafting on a choice of five rivers. Half-day, full-day, and overnight trips available. Levels II through IV. (800)232-7238.

Wildwood Outfitters: Canoeing, rafting, kayaking, and tubing along the Chattahoochee River. All your outdoor needs available at a retail store. (800)553-2715 or (706)865-4451

  • Wildwater Ltd: Whitewater rafting on the Chattooga, Nantahala, Ocoee and Pigeon Rivers. 35 years of whitewater experience on Southeastern USA rivers. (800) 451-9972
  • Carolina Outfitters: Guide-in-Boat, Guide Assisted, or Non-Guided whitewater rafting trips on the popular and scenic Nantahala River, Inflatable Funyak/Ducky rentals, excellent equipment, friendly staff, and comfortable facilities. Great low prices and group rates available. Combine our rafting with gemstone mining, horseback riding, and scenic train tours. Fully furnished vacation rentals available. Convenient to all area attractions. (800) 468-7238 or (800) 468-7238
  • Primitive Outback, Inc.: We offer leisurely kayak trips down the Little Tennessee River. The trips are 2 1/2 -3 hours long and we supply you with all equipment needed. We also have Flume Gem Mining and River Gem Mining in a nature setting along the Little Tennessee River. We’re located 4 miles from the Georgia border on Hwy 441/23 north and 6 miles south from Franklin, NC, and are open March – November 10:00am – 6:00pm, Mon. – Sun. (828)349-1717
  • Chattooga River Resort & Campground: Chattooga Whitewater Outfitters offers equipment rentals and non-guided trips on the Chattooga River. Chattooga Whitewater Outfitters 14239 Hwy 76 (Long Creek Hwy) Long Creek, SC 29658 Phone: (864)647-9083

Snow Skiing, Tubing & Ice Skating

SCALY MOUNTAIN OUTDOOR CENTER
Scaly Mountain Outdoor Center (828) 526-3737
Take NC 106 towards Highlands. Center is 3.5 miles east of Sky Valley
Snow tubing, kiddie slope, ice skating and dry tubing
​Scaly Mountain Outdoor Center – 7420 Dillard Rd. – 828.526.3737
Just a friendly reminder to come on by and join in on some fun! We are open for summer tubing, trout fishing, and also for gem mining for the kids. Outdoor fun goes on everyday beginning at 10AM and we stay open until 7PM on Friday and Saturdays, and to 6PM on the remaining days.

CATALOOCHEE SKI AREA

SAPPHIRE VALLEY SKI AREA
Take US 64E past Cashiers
Call 1 (800) 533-8286 for information
The Sapphire Valley Ski slopes are an integral part of a 5,700 acre four-season resort nestled in a pristine mountain valley high in the North Carolina Blue Ridge Mountains, with an average elevation of 4,300 feet.
The ski hill consists of two runs, one each for intermediate and beginner skiers, featuring runs up to 1600 feet in length and a vertical drop of 200 feet. Beginners receive the personal attention necessary to master the basics of downhill skiing or snowboarding, and seasoned veterans can hone their skills.
Two on-site lounge/restaurant facilities

Fishing

Fishing locations in Sky Valley: 1. Across from Glenn Abby on Tahoe Road on the right 2. City Park on Sky Valley Way 3. Across from the barn on Knob Drive

Andy’s Trout Farm (706) 746-2550
Leave Sky Valley on GA 246 South
Take US 441 South to Dillard
Turn right on Betty’s Creek Road, go 5 miles to Andy’s
Start with a hike in the woods
Mine for gems
Wrap your day by catching your supper of trout. You catch ‘em, Andy cleans ‘em
Canoe Rentals on Lake Sequoyah
Highlands Canoe Rentals, 1536 Franklin Road, Highland, NC next to “On the Verandah Restaurant” (828) 526-3126 or (407) 421-1818. Cash or checks only.
Lake Burton
Lake Rabun

Gem Mining

GEM MINES – gem mine map

Cherokee Ruby & Sapphire Mine
(Native Only) Come enjoy the fresh mountain air, natural creek water running through the flume line and the scenic beauty of Cowee Valley. Our mine is not “salted” or “enriched” and contains only native North Carolina gemstones, including Rubies, Sapphires, Garnets, Moonstones, Rhodolite, Rutile and Sillimanite. These gems occur naturally in the Cowee Valley and are not as plentiful as in “salted” mines, but are much more valuable and many are “facet quality”. We will be glad to help you identify your gems. The CHEROKEE CHIEF RUBY was found here in 1993. This huge gem quality ruby had a total weight of 1070 carats.
LOCATION: 41 Cherokee Mine Road off Ruby Mine Road, 828-349-2941

Cowee Mountain Ruby Mine
Located 4 miles north of Franklin at the foot of Cowee Mountain just off Highway 441,, Cowee Mountain Ruby Mine is open 7 days a week from 9:00 a.m. until “The Last Person Leaves”. Two covered flumes allow you to mine rain or shine. Mining instructions for the novice on premises. Free Admission. Refreshing picnic area by shade trees & running brook. Cold drinks and snacks are available in the gem shop. Buses, large or small groups welcome. Group rates are available for groups of 15 or more. Gem dirt to go is available all year. Family owned and operated.
LOCATION: 6771 Sylva Road, 828-369-5271.

Gold City Gem Mine
Home of the 1061 carat sapphire found at Gold City, featured in PEOPLE WEEKLY, DISNEY ADVENTURES and ROCK & GEM Magazines. Native and Enriched Gemstones buckets. We also have Gold Panning. New and Improved large covered flume for Gem Mining rain or shine. New inside heated flume for cold days. Located on Highway 441, 6 miles North of Franklin. Open most of the year. Call for hours. Tour buses, group rates available. Bring your rough stones in for a free inspection and cutting from our professional team in our jewlery store.
LOCATION: 9410 Sylva Rd., ph 800-713-7767 or 828-369-3905

Old Cardinal Gem Mine
Experience the fun and adventure of mining for gems. We are open seven days a week from 9am until 5pm. We love to help beginners and offer group rates. Mine for rare native rhodolite, ruby, sapphire and moonstone in enriched buckets in our partly shaded flume line. You can even take a bag of dirt home with you to share the fun with friends and family. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy at our picnic tables. Cold drinks and snacks are available for purchase. Clean rest rooms. You can also have your gems cut and mounted! Fun and excitement await you at The Old Cardinal Gem Mine.
LOCATION:71 Rockhaven Drive, ph: 828-369-6673

Jackson Hole Gem Mine
(Native and enriched stones) Located in waterfall country above the breathtaking Cullasaja Falls on Hwy. 28 & US 64 halfway between Franklin and Highlands.. Gem cutting available and gem shop on site. Covered gem mine. Friendly assistance in the cleanest mine around. 828-524-5850 – Open daily 10am – 4pm. Closed occasionally on Tuesdays. Open during winter months- weather permitting. Call ahead to verify.

Mason’s Ruby & Sapphire Mine
(Native Only) Under new management. This mine has an abundance of beautiful pink and purple sapphires with an occasional ruby. It’s one of Macon County’s oldest and most productive mines. Dig your own dirt. Open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. 7 days a week April through early October. Call the shop for hours during March and late October. 828-369-9742. Located in the Burningtown Community off Route 28 North. Follow signs.

Mason Mountain Mine & Cowee Gift Shop
(The Johnson’s Place)
(Native and enriched stones) Beautiful native rhodolite garnets, kyanite, pyrope garnets, and quartz along with other added gems. Assistance to beginners and “old timers”. Shaded flume, clean restrooms, gift shop and snack bar.
LOCATION: 5315 Bryson City Rd., ph. 828-524-4570.

Day Trips

  • Highlands, NC has many activities: Highlands Nature Center, Whiteside Mountain, shopping, and fine restaurants. Call the Highlands Visitors Center for details.828-526-5841
  • Helen, GA recreation of an alpine village. More than 200 specialty and import shops, restaurants and 1,100 quality hotel rooms. (800) 858-8027
  • Cashiers, NC charming mountain town NE of Highlands on US 64. Call (828) 743-5941
  • Biltmore Estate, Ashville, NC, visit the largest home in American, the estate of the Vanderbilt family. (800) 411-3812.
  • Cherokee, NC native American arts and crafts, casino, golf, restaurants and much more (800) 433-6700
  • Great Smokey Mountains National Park the most visited National Park. Fishing, bicycling, picnicking, horse riding, elk viewing and Ranger led programs. (865) 436-1000. Wonderful Visitor Center.
  • Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest, magnificent forest with towering trees as old as 450 years. Some enormous tulip-poplars are more than 20 feet in circumference and stand 100 feet tall. Two miles of trails to visit the trees. Robbinsville, NC (828) 479-6431
  • Mountain Biking in the Chattahoochee National Forest
    • Stonewall Falls Loop-11 miles
    • White Twister Loop-5 miles
    • Visit Chattooga River Ranger District, 9975 Hwy 441 S., Lakemont, GA for a map or call (706)754-6221.
  • Currahee Military Museum in Toccoa, GA (706) 282-5055. History of airborne training at Currahee Mountain during WWII.
  • Hambidge Center provides a residency program that empowers talented artists to explore, develop, and express their creative voices. Situated on 600 acres in the mountains of north Georgia, Hambidge is a sanctuary of time and space that inspires artists working in a broad range of disciplines to create works of the highest caliber. Hambidge is located on Betty’s Creek Road, 3.5 miles from Highway 441 in Rabun Gap. Check www.hambidge.org for events or call (706) 746-5718.
  • Great Smoky Mountain Railroad: Trains depart from the historic mountain town of Bryson City, NC. This 4½ hour, 44 mile round-trip will take you along the Tuckasegee River, over impressive Fontana Lake Trestle and into the Nantahala River Gorge. Call (800) 872-4681 for information and reservations.
  • Kids activities at Fun Factory (866) 482-2386
    • Arcade
    • Batting Cages
    • Go Cart track
    • Bowling
    • Laser Tag
    • Mini Golf
  • Adult activities
    • Whistle Stop Mall–“NC’s largest Antique Mall” 117,000 sq ft of antiques, fine shops and restaurants (828) 349-1600
    • Smokey Mountain Center for the Performing Arts, world class entertainment (866) 273-4615
    • Downtown Franklin has two gem museums and the Scottish Tartan Museum (828) 524-7472

NEARBY STATE PARKS

Black Rock Mountain GA State Park (706) 746-2141 ($5 fee per car, good for one day at all GA parks)

  • Leave Sky Valley on GA 246 South
  • Take US 441 South to Mountain City
  • Turn right on the park entrance road (8 miles from Sky Valley)
  • Foxfire Museum: Collection of log cabins housing artifacts. Entrance fee. (706) 746-5828.
  • Visit the highest state park in GA, altitude of 3,640 feet
  • Named for its sheer cliffs of dark-colored biotite gneiss
  • Spectacular 80 mile vistas of the Southern Appalachians
  • Start at the Visitor Center to get oriented
  • 10 miles of hiking trails to include a nature trail
  • Picnicking
  • Lake fishing–bass, bream, catfish, trout

Tallulah Gorge GA State Park (706) 754-7970, 24 miles ($5 fee per car, good for one day at all GA parks)

  • Leave Sky Valley on GA 246 South then take US 441 South to Tallulah Falls
  • Visit one of the oldest geological features in North America, second deepest gorge in the U.S.
  • Jane Hurt Yarn Interpretive Center, film and gift shop
  • 5 major waterfalls
  • Extensive hiking system, includes trail to river level down 500 + steps or flatter rim trail
  • Fishing
  • Beautiful picnic area
  • 10 Scenic overlooks
  • Biking

Worship

Chapel of Sky Valley
817 Sky Valley Way #8, Sky Valley, GA 30537 Call 706.746.2999
website: www.skyvalleychapel.com
Sunday Service: 10:00 AM
Pastor: Rev. Richard Montgomery Nelson
revmonty(at)windstream(dotted)net
​Weddings: skyvalleyweddings(at)gmail(dotted)com

Community Bible Church Sky Valley (Satellite Church of CBC – Highlands)
696 Sky Valley Way, #447, Sky Valley, GA 30537
Phone: 706-746-3144
Website: www.cbchighlands.com Email: susan@cbcskyvalley.comskyvalleyweddings(at)gmail(dotted)com
Sunday Service: 9:00 AM
Pastor: Rev. Gary Hewins

Area Visitor’s Guide

THINGS TO DO AROUND SKY VALLEY


NEWCOMERS GUIDE


EXPLORE RABUN GUIDE


RABUN COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


RABUN COUNTY CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU

RABUN COUNTY

RABUN COUNTY
RABUN COUNTY SCHOOLS
SID WEBER MEMORIAL FUND