Suches, Georgia, home of Sea Creek Falls, is a tiny little village in Northeast Georgia with a population of just over 1800 people. It measures roughly 74 square miles, so the population density is about 17 people per square mile. Needless to say, if privacy is your goal, Suches would certainly fit the bill!
With an elevation of just under 3000 feet, it has come to be called “The Valley Above the Clouds”, and is considered Georgia’s highest mountain community. The area is teeming with natural beauty, with numerous creeks, mountain meadows and breathtaking views.
Sea Creek Falls, Suches, Georgia. Photo courtesy of Marcia McWhorter
Sosebee Cove, near Suches, Georgia. Photo courtesy of Marcia McWhorter
The Woody Gap School
You can’t talk about Suches, without mentioning that it boasts Georgia’s smallest school, The Woody Gap School, with enrollment ranging from 60-70 students in total, combining grades K-12. That’s right, all grades are in the same building, with well under 100 students. The student teacher ratio is a whopping 5-1.
The school is part of the Union County, Ga. school system and was established in 1941, in an effort to string together a number of tiny mountain one room schools that were operating in area churches.
For shopping, you have two general stores- Cooper’s Creek Store and Wolf Pen Gap Country Store– where you can pick up necessities and gas up your car, but if you need a full supply of groceries and some serious shopping, you’ll need to drive to Blairsville or Dahlonega, both about four miles away.
Events In Suches
The Indian Summer Festival
Each year, on the first weekend in October, Suches hosts the annual Indian Summer Festival. The festival is held in a large field behind the Woody Gap School. The sponsor of this yearly event is the Woody Gap Sports Club, Inc., and the proceeds go to a scholarship program for seniors graduation from Woody Gap School.
The festival features arts and crafts from local vendors, including handmade jewelry, quilts, pottery, wood and leather crafts, and more. If you get hungry there are several vendors serving up all different kinds of food.
Inside the school lunchroom, you can purchase various baked goods offered up by the Gaddiston Homemakers Club. The club will also be selling some amazing pieces of their own needlework, and they’ve even set aside a whole corner of the lunchroom for local artist to display and sell their paintings.
A mountain fair would not be complete without music, and this festival will not disappoint. They will have ongoing entertainment, and for those of you who want to give it a whirl, there will even be square dancing!
Run Above The Clouds
The Run Above The Clouds event comprises three different races- a one mile race called “The Fun Run”, and also a more challenging 5 and 10K race. The even is sponsored by The Run Above the Clouds, Inc, a 501 (c3) group, and the proceeds go to graduates and post-graduates of The Woody Gap School in the form of scholarships to continue their educations. The funds are places in the hands of the school itself, who then makes the decision on scholarship disbursement.
Suches is surrounded by the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest, which has numerous clearly marked, Forestry maintained, hiking paths, fishing spots, campgrounds, and of course, Sea Creek Falls..
Hiking In Suches
- Appalachian Trail
- Benton-MacKaye Trail
- Three Forks Trail
- Duncan Ridge Trail
- Cooper’s Creek Trail
- Millshoals Trail
- Yellow Mountain Trail
There are lots of other small, unmarked trails to discover within the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest that borders the city.
For the fisherman, Suches truly is a paradise. Just to name a few:
- Lake Winfield Scott
- Toccoa River
- Deep Hole
- Dockery Lake
- Cooper’s Creek
You can also fish without a license at Black Mountain Trout Pond, privately owned, with 3 ponds for fishing. You pay to fish only if you catch something, and they’ll dress them for you for free!
Suches also has some beautiful campgrounds, which include:
- High Valley Resort
- Skeenah Creek Campground
- Lake Winfield Scott
- Deep Hole
- Wildcat Lodge and RV Campground
- Dockery Lake Campground
- Cooper’s Creek Campground
- Mulky Campground
Last but not least, check out our article on beautiful Sea Creek Falls!
Suches is a great day trip from Blue Ridge or Blairsville, Georgia. The drive between Blue Ridge and Suches is between 32 and 42 miles and 52 and 60 minutes, depending which route you take. Blairsville is a little bit closer, the distance between the two towns is 21 miles and a beautiful 34 minute drive.
If you have issues with motion sickness, you might want to stock up on some Antivert or Dramamine because no matter which route you take you’ll find that a great deal of the drive is spent on extremely winding mountain roads. There are some seriously “hairpin” curves and you’ll be climbing to that to that impressive 3000 feet of elevation.
Some Things To Keep In Mind
Suches is remote folks, so if you have a medical condition, be sure you have everything you need. Medical attention is available, but it’s not going to be quick. If you’re going to be camping, hiking, or spending time outdoors, make sure you bring along a first aid and snake bite kit. We have an article that addresses the poisonous snakes in the area. If you’d like to check it out- Venomous Snakes of Blue Ridge, Georgia
And of course, there are bears. Lots of them. You may not see them, but they are there. Anyone visiting remote locations should acquaint themselves with bear safety. Bearwise.org is a great site that will tell you everything you need to know about the black bears of the Appalachias including a wide range of safety tips.
Ambulances come from Union County, and as mentioned above that’s more than a half hour away. Suches does however have a new clinic that is part of the Union County Hospital system. It is open Monday through Friday, from 8:30 to 5:00.
Click here for Union General Hospital Suches Clinic
For serious or traumatic emergencies, you can access Air Methods and Air Life Georgia 14 medical helicopters. The parking lot of the Suches clinic is set up to double as a landing base for emergency air transport.
For emergency services dial 911, or you can access Union General Hospital here.
Cell phone service in the area can be spotty, but in a pinch you should contact Suches Fire and Rescue, located at 3693 GA 60. You can visit Suches Fire and Rescue by clicking here.
For more info on Suches, Ga., we recommend SuchesNews.com
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