The wife and I hiked up to the top of Brasstown bald last weekend, and I snapped some photos.. It was a beautiful day and a nice trip.. I’d do it again..
Brasstown bald is the highest natural point in the state of Georgia with a summit elevation of 4,784 feet above mean sea level.
The mountain is known to the native Cherokee people as Enotah. It is named for the former Cherokee village of Brasstown, Georgia, located along the upper Brasstown Creek.
According to the two Georgia historical markers, the area surrounding Brasstown Bald was settled by the Cherokee people. White settlers derived the word Brasstown from a translation error of a Cherokee word. Sounding very similar to another Cherokee word, settlers confused the word “Itse’yĭ” (New Green Place or Place of Fresh Green) with “Ûňtsaiyĭ” (Brass). Itse’yĭ, New Green Place, is a Cherokee locative name given to several distinct areas in the Cherokee world, including an area to the North of Brasstown Bald in North Georgia.
Cherokee legend tells of a great flood that swept over the land. Everyone that inhabited the land died except a few Cherokee families that sought refuge in a giant canoe. The canoe ran aground at the summit of the mountain. Having no wild game to hunt and no place to plant vegetation, the Great Spirit killed all of the trees on the top of the mountain so the surviving people could plant their crops. They continued planting until the water subsided.
While the Cherokee legend tells of a treeless mountain top, the term “bald” is common mountain terminology describing mountaintops that have 360-degree unobstructed views. The official name that includes the word Bald in this case was not intended to suggest a once-treeless mountaintop, the way the term is used for most other Appalachian balds.
Other names given to Brasstown Bald by the Cherokee: Echia, Echoee, Etchowee & Enotah.