The US. Forest Service has banned alcohol use at 11 recreation sites in the Nantahala National Forest.
The sites include: Balsam Lake Recreation Area, Big Choga Dispersed Camping Sites, Bristol Fields Campground, Cheoah Point Swimming Area, Dry Falls Recreational Area, Fire’s Creek Hunter’s Camp, Fire’s Creek Picnic Area, Jackrabbit Recreation Area, Pine Ridge Dispersed Camping Sites, Wayah Bald Tower and Picnic Area, and Whiteside Mountain Recreation Area. All sites are within the Tusquitee, Cheoah and Nantahala Ranger Districts.
Several sites have been vandalized in association with alcohol consumption. Law enforcement officials have been called out for related incidents. Broken beer bottles in streams pose safety concerns for barefoot children and adults in adjoining creeks. Cheoah Point Swimming Area is the only public, free swimming on Lake Santeetlah and brings large numbers of visitors.
For more information on recreation sites across the forest and Ranger District contact information see the Carolina Connections publication online at www.cs.unca.edu/nfsnc/recreation /connections/Connections2010.pdf or call 828.257.4258.