The longest pedestrian suspension bridge in the U.S. is now open

Instagram / Gatlinburg SkyLift Park

This one’s for you, thrill-seekers: The longest pedestrian-only suspension bridge in the United States opened May 17 in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. At 680 feet long, the Gatlinburg SkyBridge promises stunning views of the majestic Smoky Mountains.

For added excitement, the bridge has see-through panels installed at its highest point, which sits 140 feet above the ground. I am terrified of heights, so this news gives me some serious heebie-jeebies.

But I support everyone’s right to good, clean, spine-tingling fun — and by the looks of this photo posted on the Gatlinburg Skylift Park’s Instagram account, walking this new bridge fits the bill:

The SkyBridge is part of SkyLift Park, one of Gatlinburg’s longest-running attractions.

The SkyLift takes riders from the center of town to the top of Crockett Mountain and back. Essentially it’s a ski lift that leads to no skiing.

The park’s renovations also include the SkyCenter and SkyDeck.

These new additions feature a restaurant and bar at the top of the mountain with outdoor seating, panoramic views and, of course, a gift shop.

These views look like they’re best admired in person, though plenty of photos and videos already exist to entice visitors to the SkyCenter.

One short video of the view from the new SkyCenter was posted on the park’s official YouTube channel:


There has been a bit of controversy over the bridge’s record-length status.

The SkyLift folks claim that the SkyBridge will be the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in all of North America. But earlier this year, a reporter from the Knoxville News Sentinel found a bridge in Canada that claims to measure 800 feet across — 120 feet longer than the SkyBridge.

Nonetheless, SkyBridge’s online materials still insist that it’s the longest on the whole continent. I suppose the two can hash it out themselves now that the SkyBridge has finally opened.

Curiosity, News, Travel

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About the Author
Kathleen St. John
Kathleen St. John is a freelance journalist. She lives in Denver with her husband, two kids and a fiercely protective Chihuahua. Visit Scripps News to see more of Kathleen's work.

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