Major Land Tract Protected
The Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy has purchased a 601 acre land tract at Grassy Ridge next to Pisgah National Forest near the Appalachian Trail in the Highlands of the Roan in Avery County. The land which is partly visible from the Appalachian Trail was held privately by heirs of J.K. Stuart and was at one time under contract with a developer. The tract has been a high priority of conservationists for 40 years because of its size and location. The area includes watershed areas, 25 headwaters that flow into the wild trout waters of Roaring Creek, vital bird habitat, rock outcrops, and some of the largest concentrations of rare species in the state. The land sold for the appraised value of $3.9 million. Guided hikes are planned for later this year.