Latitude / Longitude:
36° 4′ 15 N, 82° 24′ 8 W
Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
Lost Cove is a ghost town in Yancey County, North Carolina. The town was first settled by Morgan Bailey shortly before the Civil War.
The town is located in the Poplar Gorge above the Nolichucky River on the Tennessee-North Carolina border. Originally, the settlement was supported by logging, railroading, moonshine-making, and farming industries. Several factors contributed to the town’s abandonment including rough terrain, isolation, and the end of passenger railroad stops.
Lost Cove is only accessible via hiking trails. To reach the ghost town, there are two possible routes. The first route is shorter but steeper: from the parking lot on Forest Road, you must hike 2 miles up a gravel hill. The second route is longer yet flatter: from River Road, follow the railroad tracks along the river for 3 miles until you encounter a 1-mile dirt path that will lead you into the town.
In 1957, the last family left Lost Cove, leaving it deserted. Fires in 2007 burned most of the structures down. Today, the town is still accessible to those willing to hike. Visitors to the area come to see the cemetery, Swin Miller’s rusted Chevy still laying in a ditch, and the three houses that remain.