Along Historic Bill’s Creek Road near Lake Lure
Just east of idyllic Lake Lure, along the Blue Ridge Escarpment, above, is a road steeped in Colonial history. During the American Revolution when the Colonists suspected that the Cherokee were aiding the British, General Griffith Rutherford led a force of 5,000 men on a campaign to burn Cherokee villages and displace the inhabitants. Over a period of weeks, the soldiers systematically destroyed every major village throughout the North Carolina mountains, and when they were finished, they used a well worn Cherokee trail to return to the North Carolina Piedmont. A number of stockade style log forts were built along the way. The rutted mud trail became part of what was to be called “The Rutherford Trace”. Over time, the trail grew into a wagon route for Scotch-Irish settlers who were moving into the Blue Ridge. By the 1930’s the trail was paved, and was called Bill’s Creek Road, after a small stream that flowed from nearby Bill’s Mountain. Today, the road is the major north-south route between the vacation mecca of Chimney Rock/Lake Lure, and I-40 twenty miles to the north. Along its winding pavement, churches and gated enclaves have been built, along with many farm houses and tourist cabins.
Bill’s Mountain community is the most upscale of all the gated communities. A mixture of large homes and luxury condominiums with spectacular views is its hallmark. Manicured shrubs and expansive mowed meadows make for a very welcoming arrival.
The Craftsman style gatehouse reflects the architectural direction of most of the homes inside the development. The stone, wood, and slate materials are seen in many large estates all around nearby Lake Lure.
Covering the large expanses of bottomland at the base of Bill’s Mountain are huge commercial farms where tomatos, squash, collard greens, and turnips are grown to supply major grocery chains all across North and South Carolina.
Stay tuned for more breathtaking vistas and history as we continue to explore the rolling foothills along Bill’s Creek Road.