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Historic Landmark Preservation Commission: Ridges Mountain

Ridges Mountain looking northwest

Needle Eye Rock

Indian Head Rock

Upland pool, March

Upland pool in March. No fish to eat the larvae because the pond is dry in summer, so it is a haven for breeding spotted and marbled salamanders and other amphibians. [Source: N.C. Zoo]

Upland pool, spring

Upland pool in spring, almost dried up. The grassy-looking plant is joor's sedge (Carex joorii), often seen in upland pools in the Piedmont. [Source: NC Zoo]

Grassy glade

A grassy glade on top of the mountain. The grass here in this dry area is mostly poverty oatgrass (Danthonia spicata). [Source: N.C. Zoo]

Southern shagbark hickory

Southern shagbark hickory (Carya carolinae-spetrionalis) prefers to grow on higher PH (non-acidic) soils. Acidic soils are more common in North Carolina, but the gabbro rock of Ridges Mountain weathers into soil that is less acidic than most and high in minerals [Source: N.C. Zoo]

Boulders on Ridges Mountain

[Source: NC Zoo]

Boulders on Ridges Mountain

[Source: NC Zoo]

Boulders on Ridges Mountain

Stone wall atop Ridges Mountain

Believed to have been part of a stockyard or holding pen. [Source: NC Zoo]

1765 Plat Map

Surveyor Henry Eustace McCullough's plat map of the Caraway Creek area ca. 1765 showing "Ridges Place" and the trading path. The map bears the following notation: "These two tracts will be easily subdivided, as the good land lies along the creek on both sides."

Read the Cultural Heritage Site Designation Report

Read the Cultural Heritage Site Designation Resolution

Ridge’s Mountain is one of Randolph County’s best geological, ecological, and historic sites, sitting eight miles west of Asheboro, North Carolina. It is part of the Uwharrie Mountain chain, said to be the oldest mountain chain in North America. Ridge’s Mountain reaches an elevation of 840 feet and is believed to be over 5 million years old. Sitting approximately two miles from Highway 64, this impressive site is home to biologically diverse and unique habitats that foster plant and animal activity not seen anywhere else in the county. With its fascinating connection to local Native American communities and its history as an eighteenth century trading post, Ridge’s Mountain comprehensively connects the natural wonders of the site with its cultural significance during the pre-colonial and colonial periods.

Accessibility:

To visit the summit of Ridges Mountain or hike on the mountain, contact Nell Allen, NC Zoo, nell.allen@nczoo.org, 336-879-7409.