Judaculla Rock Jackson County
Judaculla Rock is the best known petroglyph site in North Carolina. The site was donated to Jackson County by the Parker family and may be visited by the public. The soapstone boulder is covered in glyphs of circles, lines, cupules, crosses, anthropomorphs, and other undetermined shapes. Long grooved lines, referred to as rills or " power lines ", seem to connect different glyphs.
The meaning of the Judaculla petroglyphs remain a mystery to us. In the late 1800's ethnologist James Mooney documented the Cherokee legend of Tsul'kalu', a slant eyed giant. Tsul'kalu' was considered a great hunter who lived in nearby mountains. As legend describes, the giant leaped down off his mountain to a creek below where he scratched the rock with his 7 fingered hands. Other versions say he scraped it with his toes. Over time the name Tsul'kalu' evolved to Judaculla.
Outcropping soapstone boulders behind Judaculla Rock show evidence of prehistoric quarrying scars where stone bowls were carved from the soft stone. A limited archaeological excavation in 1993 revealed quarrying tools as well. In the Southeastern U.S., soapstone bowls were being manufactured between the Late Archaic Period (3000 -1000 BC) to the early Woodland Period (Sassaman et al), (1000-200 BC), and so by association the glyphs may date to this period.
Alerts & Warnings
- Grandfather RD: Locust Cove Fire burning near Hwy 80 in Sunnyvale
- Cheoah RD: Prescribed Burn Planned in Graham County
- Cheoah RD: NCDOT highway improvements will affect AT users
- Croatan NF: Two Roads Closed for Visitor Safety and Maintenance
- Cheoah RD: Fontana Loop Trail TR15, Portions of Bee Cove TR421 Temporarily Close
- Be Bear Aware
- Catawba Falls Trail (TR 225) Closed
- Camping and other restrictions now in effect at Max Patch
- Grandfather RD: Linville Gorge Wilderness Camping Permits Move to Recreation.gov
- Nantahala RD: Old River Rd Temporarily Closed For Maintenance Beginning 3/1/23
- Nantahala RD: Multiple areas under construction
- Appalachian RD: NCDOT construction near Harmon Den may affect Forest access
- Grandfather RD: Old House Gap Rd (FS192) temporarily closed
- Recreate responsibly
- Target Shooting prohibited on Croatan National Forest