Tuckasegee River

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Tuckasegee River
Looking up the Tuckasegee.jpg
View upriver from Old River Rd. above Bryson City
The Little Tennessee drainage basin
CountryUnited States
StateNorth Carolina
Physical characteristics
Sourceconfluence of Panthertown and Greenland creeks
 ⁃ coordinates35°10′6″N 83°0′41″W / 35.16833°N 83.01139°W / 35.16833; -83.01139
 ⁃ elevation3,969 ft (1,210 m)
 ⁃ location
Lake Fontana
 ⁃ coordinates
35°26′5″N 83°35′4″W / 35.43472°N 83.58444°W / 35.43472; -83.58444Coordinates: 35°26′5″N 83°35′4″W / 35.43472°N 83.58444°W / 35.43472; -83.58444
 ⁃ elevation
1,703 ft (519 m)
Length60 mi (97 km)
Basin size655 sq mi (1,700 km2)
 ⁃ locationBryson City
 ⁃ average1,584 cu ft/s (44.9 m3/s)
 ⁃ minimum31 cu ft/s (0.88 m3/s)
 ⁃ maximum61,600 cu ft/s (1,740 m3/s)
Basin features
River systemLittle TennesseeTennessee
 ⁃ leftWest Fork Tuckasegee River, Savannah Creek, Barkers Creek, Connelley Creek, Kirkland Creek
 ⁃ rightTanasee Creek, Caney Fork, Wayehutta Creek, Mill Creek, Scott Creek, Dicks Creek, Camp Creek, Oconaluftee River, Cooper Creek, Deep Creek, Lands Creek, Dicks Creek, Noland Creek, Forney Creek

The Tuckasegee River (variant spellings include Tuckaseegee and Tuckaseigee)[1] flows entirely within western North Carolina. It begins its course in Jackson County above Cullowhee at the confluence of Panthertown and Greenland creeks. It flows in a northwesterly direction into Swain County where it joins the Oconaluftee before heading through the center of Bryson City, North Carolina. The river passes around the Bryson City Island Park, where it then enters Fontana Lake and then the Little Tennessee River.

The name Tuckasegee may be an anglicisation of the Cherokee language word daksiyi—[takhšiyi] in the local Cherokee variety—'Turtle Place.' The river is dotted with stone fishing weirs built by Native Americans; this practice may have preceded the Cherokee in the area. The weirs are most easily viewed when water levels are low.[2]

Fishing, hiking and paddling are among the recreational opportunities along the river.


  1. ^ "Tuckasegee River". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2010-07-01.
  2. ^ See Anne Frazier Rogers, "Fish weirs as part of the cultural landscape," Appalachian Cultural Resources Workshop Papers, National Park Service. Photo of the Allman fish weir discussed in the paper