Hiwassee River Blueway
The Hiwassee River Blueway is one of the premier blueway trail systems in Southeast Tennessee. The trail contains over 60 miles of navigable water for canoe, kayak and paddle boat enthusiasts to enjoy. The trail begins upriver from the Historic District of Reliance in the Cherokee National Forest . It gently winds its way towards the Tennessee River where the trail finally ends at the Hiwassee River Wildlife Refuge Area at Blythe Ferry. At the upper reaches of the river you will encounter some of the best trout fishing in the eastern U.S. Along the way to the river’s mouth at Blythe Ferry you pass beautiful wild and undeveloped shore line, pastoral farmland, and numerous historical sites like the Reliance Church, Webb’s Farm, Charleston and Calhoun and the Cherokee Removal Memorial Park in Birchwood, Tennessee.
Located along the Tellico River arm of Tellico Lake, the Tellico Blueway is a dream come true for flatwater canoeists and kayakers. At 11 miles, the Blueway is long enough for an overnight float, but short enough to paddle in one day. Much of the designated route follows stump-filled waters that are too treacherous for large motorboats, but ideal for human-powered watercraft. The entire 11-mile route is in Monroe County, in the foothills of the Cherokee National Forest. Just past the Big Creek Ramp put-in, the Tellico Blueway maintains a narrow channel as it feeds into the backwaters of Tellico Lake. Wild roses grow along the river banks and as the waterway gradually widens, you pass cattails and towering limestone bluffs with gnarled cedar trees clinging to the rock.