Brown Mountain (North Carolina)

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Brown Mountain Ridge
Brown Mountain, North Carolina viewed from Beacon Heights, October 2016.jpg
Brown Mountain viewed from Beacon Heights
Highest point
Elevation2,283 ft (696 m)
Coordinates35°54′57″N 81°44′45″W / 35.91583°N 81.74583°W / 35.91583; -81.74583
LocationBurke / Caldwell counties, North Carolina, U.S.
Parent rangeBlue Ridge Mountains
Topo mapUSGS Collettsville

Brown Mountain[1] is a low-lying ridge, approximately 1.5 miles long, in the Pisgah National Forest near Morganton, North Carolina, on the border of Burke and Caldwell Counties.

For perhaps hundreds of years, and since at least the early 20th century, mysterious illuminations known as the Brown Mountain Lights have been seen there.

The lights are small balls that appear irregularly over Brown Mountain. There are hundreds of eyewitness accounts of the lights, and they have merited two investigations by the United States Geological Society. It is known that they have been seen by residents of the surrounding area since at least the 19th century, but the Cherokee Native Americans of the area may have been seeing the lights as early as the 13th century.

When present, the Brown Mountain lights can be seen from as far away as Blowing Rock, North Carolina, and have been reported to rise to a fair height above the ridge, before disappearing in a 'silent explosion' like a Roman candle. The lights are best seen from Wiseman's view or Linville Falls.

See also[edit]