ROAD TO NOWHERE – an example of poor planning and poorer politics!

Who would have thought that a politically inspired road that ultimately dead-ended and that resulted in descendants of a cemetery being taken by boat to visit the graves of their relatives would become a minor tourist attraction?

In North Carolina there is an expensive road that goes nowhere. The Road to Nowhere goes through a tunnel about a quarter of a mile long and abruptly ends. It leads to an old hiking trail. The road that leads to the tunnel is well maintained, better than a lot of surrounding roads, but there are no houses along the road.


The road was started around 1941 and was meant  to connect Bryson City, NC with  ancestral homes and cemeteries in the Great Smokey National Forest.  Finally in 2010  the federal government paid  Swain County, NC about 52 million dollars in lieu of completing  the road. The National Park Service provides  boat access to a cemetery for the descendants of people buried in the cemetery which the road was supposed to go to.

The tunnel  is long and has graffiti. The area is remote, has numerous hiking trails, and is a beautiful part of The Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Not a destination, but an interesting side trip if you are in the area and like to hike.




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