COLLETTSVILLE, N.C. (WBTV) - Officials with the Pisgah National Forest took down barriers and tapes along a 2.2 mile stretch of Brown Mountain Beach Road and opened the shoreline of Wilson Creek to the public again on Friday.
It’s been closed off since March because of coronavirus concerns.
Officials did not want the area to be a gathering spot.
The opening, in time for the 4th of July, had many folks happy, but also wary that large groups might still congregate near the waterway.
Caldwell County deputies, though, will be patrolling in force, and with limited parking, they think large gatherings will not happen.
Lt. John Runion said if they do see one in progress they will use the public address system on the patrol vehicle and tell the group to split up.
Without many places to park, many drivers normally try to squeeze in wherever they think the vehicle will fit.
Last year, on the 4th, more than two dozen vehicles were towed because of that.
There will be no second chances for drivers this year either, according to Runion.
When they spot an illegally parked vehicle, “if we cannot find the owner quickly, it will be towed,” Runion said.
Runion said deputies must keep the roadway clear in case emergency traffic is needed.
“There are communities up the road that depend on it,” Runion said.
Authorities advise anyone heading to Wilson Creek over the 4th to be prepared to turn around and go elsewhere if they cannot find a parking spot.