The 7 Highest Bridges in North Carolina

North Carolina boasts a diverse landscape stretching from mountains to coast, showcasing some of the country’s most impressive bridges. In this blog post, we’ll delve into North Carolina’s seven highest bridges and uncover fascinating facts about each.

Peter Guice Memorial Bridge

Situated in Henderson County, the Peter Guice Memorial Bridge claims the title of North Carolina’s highest bridge and ranks third-highest among interstate highway bridges in the Eastern U.S. Soaring 225 feet above the Green River Gorge, this bridge, completed in 1972, carries I-26 and US 74 traffic, honoring Peter Guice, the builder of the gorge’s first wooden bridge in 1820.

Laurel Creek Gorge Bridge

The second-highest bridge in North Carolina, the Laurel Creek Gorge Bridge, stands at 220 feet. Nestled in Buncombe County, it’s the highest bridge along the Blue Ridge Parkway, offering scenic views of mountains and a designated trout stream below. Completed in 2002, it serves I-26, US 19, and US 23 traffic, connecting Asheville and Johnson City.

Linn Cove Viaduct

Located in Avery County, the Linn Cove Viaduct is the state’s third-highest bridge, rising 153 feet above the slopes of Grandfather Mountain. A concrete segmental bridge completed in 1987, it is the most renowned bridge on the Blue Ridge Parkway, winning awards for both its engineering and aesthetics. It marked the completion of the parkway, designed to minimize environmental impact on the mountain.

Cape Fear Memorial Bridge

The fourth-highest bridge in North Carolina, the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge, towers 150 feet over the Cape Fear River. Connecting New Hanover County and Brunswick County, this steel bridge, opened in 1969, supports US 17 Business, US 76, and US 421 traffic. Its lift span, rising 135 feet, facilitates ship passage, making it a landmark in Wilmington, symbolizing its maritime heritage.

Bunker Hill Covered Bridge

Standing as the fifth-highest bridge, the Bunker Hill Covered Bridge spans the west fork of the Little River in Catawba County. At 85 feet tall, it is a wooden bridge built in 1895 with a rare Haupt truss design. Recognized as a National Civil Engineering Landmark, it remains open to pedestrians and stands as one of only two covered bridges in the state.

Ole Gilliam Mill Park Covered Bridge

Claiming the sixth position, the Ole Gilliam Mill Park Covered Bridge is the state’s longest covered bridge, reaching 80 feet in height. Spanning the Little River in Lee County, this wooden bridge, a replica of the original destroyed in a 1996 flood, was constructed in 1997. Open to both pedestrians and vehicles, it’s part of a roadside park featuring a restored grist mill, picnic area, and playground.

Deep River Camelback Truss Bridge

The seventh-highest bridge in North Carolina, the Deep River Camelback Truss Bridge, stands at 75 feet, crossing the Deep River in Chatham County. As the state’s oldest metal bridge, built in 1901, its camelback truss design adds distinction. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places and closed to traffic, it serves as a pedestrian and bicycle trail.


North Carolina’s bridges, standing tall over gorges, rivers, and scenic landscapes, are a testament to the state’s engineering prowess, rich history, and vibrant culture. Whether driving, biking, or walking, exploring the stories and views of these seven highest bridges is a captivating journey through North Carolina’s remarkable landmarks.

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