If that’s not exciting enough for you, McMinn County offers the thrill of repelling off the cliffs and high bluffs along the northern banks of the Hiwassee River located on the southeastern tip of McMinn County just south of Etowah.
For a little more sensible thrill you can take route 30 and travel east along the southern banks of the Hiwassee River and enjoy the scenic view of a wide and more tamed river as it flows between high mountain ridges. Here you can take in the beauty of river bottomland, farmsteads and a town lost in time, the mostly undeveloped community of Reliance.
This laid-back mountain country style atmosphere offers a sense of leisure and comfort to sightseers and hikers alike. There is though one particular type of sports person who venture here year after year, and just can’t get enough of a good thing, that is the dedicated fly fisher. The beauty, the tranquility and easy access along the northern bank of the river make the Hiwassee River the river of choice for fly-fishing. You can just leave your cares and worries behind and let your troubles drift away along on the river’s current while casting line and lure again and again, standing waders deep in the gentle current of the Hiwassee River. Rafting, canoeing and tubing are also enjoyable recreation along the crystal blue waters of the Hiwassee River.
John Muir the famous America naturalist who was instrumental in putting the renowned Yosemite Valley, America’s first National Park on the map found his way into this river region in the late 1800’s. So intrigued, so awe inspired was John Muir by the beauty and serenity of the Hiwassee River that an 18.9-mile trail was established along its banks and honored by his name. Here in the backcountry and winding its way thru the foothill of these western Blue Ridge Mountains is the John Muir National Recreation Trail. You can walk in his footsteps knowing that the wonders he once experience here are preserved for all generations to come.
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