Hayesville North Carolina: Good for the Soul
Located in the Southwestern corner of North Carolina, Hayesville North Carolina in Clay County is the home of Lake Chatuge. The towns inviting mountain landscapes, and a charming downtown square will send you back to the time when you knew your neighbors . A time when church and school were the top of the social calendar. This tight knit community steeps traditional values. Spend your evenings sitting on the porch and gazing at the stars or going out to the many gatherings, festivals and events of dancing, music and good country cooking.
Cultural opportunities abound in Hayesville. Check the CCCRA’s Friday night Concert Series schedule to see when the next free concert is on the square. Catch a great show at the Peacock Playhouse, our local community theater. Be sure to stop by John C. Campbell Folk School where you can catch a free Friday-night concert by groups with names like The Georgia Potlickers and The Dismembered Tennesseeans. Shop the crafts shop at this internationally known folk school which features the work of more than 300 local and regional artists. Or take a class and learn something new. While in Hayesville be sure to visit our many local art studios, quaint stores, our heritage museum or the many local breweries starting to call Hayesville home.
With a population of around 11,000, mostly part time residence, Clay County is among the five least populated counties in the state. We have one of the lowest property tax rates in North Carolina. That works out to only 49 people per square mile. With elevations ranging from 1,200 feet up to 5,498 and sixty percent of the county being National Forest, there are plenty of lofty vistas to take in the view.
Although there are many townships including Brasstown, Warne, Fires Creek, Shooting Creek, Elf, and Tusquittee. There is only one ‘town’ in Clay County.
Clay County was formed in 1861 from Cherokee County and was named for Henry Clay, Kentucky’s famed statesman. The town was built around the historic two story Clay County courthouse constructed in 1888. The Hayesville town square is often the focal point of the many festivities in the county. The school is on one large ‘campus’ where, attending all 12 grades, a child only has to change buildings as they move from grade school up through high school. Student test scores and academic performance consistently rank Clay County among the top five percent of the schools in the state.
Hayesville North Carolina Recreation
If the outdoors is for you, so is Hayesville.
Trout Fishing and Water Sports
About 3,700 acres of the 7000 acre sapphire-blue waters of Lake Chatuge are in Clay County. With a 128 miles of shoreline, this pristine lake is ideal for swimming, boating, camping and fishing. Many public boat ramps are available to bring your own boat or three marinas on the lake offer daily boat rentals. Lake Chatuge has many bass tournaments on the lake. The record large mouth bass caught in Lake Chatuge weighed in at 17 pounds!
Hayesville is a fly fisherman’s wet dream with six hatchery support streams and four wild trout streams. You can fish a different stream every week. Whether you like the solitude of the little know trout stream of Fires Creek or the abundant bounty on the Hawassee River, you will find the ideal fishing hole just waiting for you to discover.
Camping and Cycling
Jackrabbit Campground, part of the Nantahala National Forest, is located on the shores of Lake Chatuge. It offers 100 camp sites, hiking, picnic areas and a sandy beach swimming area. For the cyclist in the family, there is Jack Rabbit Bike Trail, 15 miles of constructed single track stacked-loop trails specifically designed to appeal to all skill levels, beginner to advanced. The trail is rated 4.5 stars by the nations top cyclist. It is becoming one of the most popular riding trails in the southeast.
Hiking and Horse Back Riding
But that is not all Hayesville North Carolina has to offer, Fires Creek, also part of the Nantahala National Forest, encompass 14,000 acres. Designated as a bear sanctuary the Fires Creek area is full of wildlife. It is popular for many outdoor enthusiast including fly fishermen, hikers, horse back riders and photography buffs. Fires Creek winds its way through the forest providing some beautiful scenery amid waterfalls . The wide trails are perfect for horse back riding. Many hiking trails that run through the Nantahala National Forest start just outside the town limits. One of the longest is the Rim Trail. The 25-mile loop trail starts near Leatherwood Falls and takes in the Big Peachtree and Weatherman balds. furthermore it’s known for its lush wildflowers and mountain views, hence you see why this is a must do on any hikers bucket list!
Lets not forget the golfers in the crowd! Clay County has two beautifully maintained golf courses. Chatuge Shores is a public 18 hole course covering 150 acres with number 8 hole bordering Lake Chatuge. The Ridges Country Club is rated 5 stars and offers an 18 hole Willard Byrd Golf Course. The club has five set of tees, 62 bunkers and water for a challenging game, all in an awe inspiring mountain scenic setting. Most noteworthy the Ridges Golf Club house is an excellent place to grab lunch and a drink before or after your tee time.
Hayesville is on U.S. Highway 64, just west of Chunky Gal Mountain, north of Lake Chatuge. To put that in geographical perspective, this part of North Carolina
is closer to the capitals of six other states (Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee, South Carolina, Kentucky, and West Virginia) than it is to Raleigh.
So come and be above the rest in the mountains of Western North Carolina. Visit Hayesville and discover the “Best Kept Secret” of the mountains. There is a reason our towns tag line is “Good for the Soul” come see for yourself. Buy your Hayesville NC Real Estate today!
Clay County Chamber Of Commerce
388 Bus. Hwy. 64, Hayesville, NC 28904
History of Hayesville, North Carolina
Hayesville North Carolina occupies the site of the former Cherokee town of Quanassee, which lay along the Trading Path (also called the “Unicoi Turnpike”). The road led from Hayesville west to Murphy, North Carolina,then over the Unicoi Range at Unicoi Gap and down to the Cherokee town of Great Tellico (today Tellico Plains, Tennessee)
Clay County was formed in 1861 from Cherokee County and was named for Henry Clay, Kentucky’s famed statesman. The town was built around the historic two story Clay County courthouse constructed in 1888. The town of Hayesville was incorporated on March 12, 1913. The first mayor of Hayesville North Carolina was S.E. Hogsed.