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Linville Gorge and its Wilderness Significance

Is there a more spectacular destination in Southern Appalachia than the Linville Gorge? Sure, I bet you can think of many others, and it is hard to pick just one – but I bet we can all agree that the Gorge would make most Top 5 lists.

Have the stunning and soaring views from the rim, the cathedral-like setting along the river, and the signature falls been seared into your memory?

Did you know that Linville Gorge is:

  • Part of the National Wilderness Preservation System, a mosaic of protected lands that comprise over 100,000,000 acres across the United States.

  • Recognized as so special that it was 1 of only 3 areas in the East protected by the original Wilderness Act in 1964.

The Wilderness designation is significant. It means we recognized, as a society, this place should be preserved for the use and enjoyment of the American public in its wild and primitive condition and it is here for us to embrace and protect.

The role for SAWS in the Gorge is to empower both of those actions. We want you to embrace the beauty and significance of the place as well enjoy solitude where the hand of man does not dominate. We are here to help you find those special moments and also to raise your awareness of how to preserve those moments for others.

In Linville Gorge you will find SAWS:

  • Staff at the Linville Gorge Information Cabin

  • Wilderness Rangers on the trails educating folks on wilderness values

  • Wilderness Field Crews improving trails and mitigating environmental impacts

Find us and we will share with you the magic of the place and our love of Wilderness.

  • Fuel up with Breakfast at Famous Louise’s Rock House Restaurant

  • Do a short stroll to Wisemans View to see the Wilderness from the rim

  • Earn one of Western North Carolina’s most iconic views with a hike to the Hawksbill

  • Take a late afternoon dip in the Linville River (when safe)

  • If climbing is your thing – find a pitch on the Carolina Wall

  • Cold beer awaits you in Morganton at Fonta Flora or Catawba Brewing

  • Grab a pie at Moondog Pizza in Morganton

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