Brown Mountain Beach Road

Scout Route
4/5 (2 reviews)

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Brown Mountain Beach Road travels through the popular Wilson Creek Gorge, along Wilson Creek, and past the ghost town of Mortimer, where it terminates at the Mortimer Campground. This easy gravel road is about raging white rapids, lush rhododendrons, and history. The Wilson Creek Gorge offers access to the banks of the wild Wilson Creek, with several rapids and waterfalls. Mortimer was booming in 1904 from the timber industry and incorporated in 1906 with 800 residents. The lumber company had a sprawling railroad and operations throughout the area. In 1916, a forest fire burned from Grandfather Mountain to Wilson Creek. The fire was immediately followed by a flood that wiped out the lumber company operations and, thus, the town. In 1922, United Mills opened a cotton mill that revitalized the town. However, in 1940, a hurricane raged off the coast that dumped tremendous rain in the area, causing Wilson Creek to flood again. The river was 94' above its banks and wiped the town out. For the most part, the town had vacated after the second devastating flood and never came back. This gravel road is mainly within the Pisgah National Forest but does intersect private property. Dispersed camping is not an option, but if you are not afraid of a potential flood, the Mortimer Campground is open seasonally.