Welcome to My New Website!
Environmental news and weekend events are on the “Clyde’s Columns” tab. Outdoor activities and day trips are on the “Blue Ridge Experience” tab. On the subject of real estate, I’m famous for my due diligence page (“Dirty Secrets?“), so please visit that if you are new to our market. I’ve been here 30 years, and I’m a Georgia Master Naturalist, so I may be able to answer your questions about the great outdoors, or direct you to someone who can. Please let me know if anything isn’t working or if you have any questions. I’ll glad to answer your questions by email (clydeholler@gmail.com) or phone (706.633.3695).

Why Our Mountains?

First, our area is easily accessed by four-lane highway from Atlanta, with average travel times of about an hour and a half. Many Florida residents can also reach our area in a day.

We’ve been on the national map since the February 2002 issue of the Wall Street Journal’s Smart Money magazine named Blue Ridge GA one of the five best places to buy vacation homes in the U.S. “Why is this town a choice retreat? No worries about over-development — 42% of Fannin County is owned by the National Forest Service. After hiking the Appalachian mountain trails, head to the 100-year-old downtown to furnish your new house at the antique stores and galleries.” The June 17, 2014 issue of their MarketWatch lists Blue Ridge as #4 of “10 Great Mountain Towns For Retirees.” Their comment: “If you like the outdoors, chances are you have dreamed about retiring to a town in the mountains. You might love to ski, hike, camp, fish, mountain bike, or just plain admire the beautiful scenery.” 

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So why all the buzz? For most of us, it is the mix of relaxed lifestyle, natural beauty, and outdoor recreational opportunities, coupled with a dynamic and fun restored downtown featuring great shops, restaurants, and taverns. Our wilderness areas are really wild, and Fannin County continues to be 42% national forest. Lake Blue Ridge has approximately 100 miles of shoreline, with 80 miles of it being national forest shoreline. Trout fishing is wonderful, and Fannin County has been recognized as the “Trout Capital of Georgia.”

Our area includes two different mountain chains, the Cohuttas and the Blue Ridge Mountains. It has three major lakes, Carter’s, Blue Ridge, and Nottely. It is home to five major rivers, the Toccoa/Ocoee, the Nottely, the Cartecay, the Ellijay, and the Coosawattee, along with one large creek especially beloved by trout fishermen, Fightingtown Creek. It is home to two major wilderness areas, the Cohutta/Big Frog and the Rich Mountain Wilderness, along with a number of Wildlife Management Areas. According to the Georgia Conservancy’s Guide to the North Georgia Mountains, the Blue Ridge region has the greatest mixture of temperate climate plants in the world, except for eastern temperate Asia, because it comprises the northernmost range of many southern species and the southernmost range of many northern species.

With these advantages, we have become a very popular area for second homes, and we have a growing full-time population of retirees and people who commute elsewhere for work. We’re secluded without being remote, and many Atlanta residents visit their mountain cabins on a weekly basis, year-round. We also have a very strong weekend rental market, which allows buyers to leverage their investment by realizing some income on their properties. Chattanooga is just as close as Atlanta, and offers a somewhat different mix of shopping and dining experiences.

If you have questions about our area, please call me at 706.633.3695, or email me. There are no obligations, your information will not be shared, and you may unsubscribe at any time.