Judaculla Rock, Cullowhee

#5 of 7 in Nature in Jackson County
Geologic Formation · Hidden Gem · Nature / Park
Judaculla Rock is the name of an archeological site that features a curvilinear-shaped outcrop of soapstone known for its ancient carvings and petroglyphs. It is located on a 0.85-acre rectangular-shaped property, now owned by Jackson County. It is approximately 60 meters east of Caney Fork Creek, a major branch of the northwestward-trending Tuckasegee River, in the mountains of Western North Carolina.

The petroglyph boulder occurs within an artificially created bowl-shaped depression. Today this is covered with mowed grass (it was previously cultivated as a corn field) and bordered on the west by a thicket of river cane (Arundinaria gigantea). Slightly upslope and east of the boulder are a few smaller outcroppings of soapstone bedrock, at least two of which show definite scars left by ancient quarrying for soapstone bowl manufacture. This is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Put Judaculla Rock at the forefront of your travel plans using our Cullowhee trip itinerary maker.
Improve this listing »
Create an itinerary including Judaculla Rock
© OpenMapTiles © OpenStreetMap contributors

Judaculla Rock reviews

Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
48 reviews
  • The place was easy to find and the caretakers have done an amazing job to showcase the rock and make it user friendly. The family who has preserved this awesome archeological find has done us all a...  more »
  • The Rock is very easy to find as there are signs at the main road and all turns to get there. It is an interesting item to see and think about its history. It is well displayed with a platform around....  more »
  • I am surprised at the terrible reviews. This is not a state park or museum. It is a large rock with writing that even the Cherokee people think of as ancient. Don’t plan to spend the day. Take a bit.....  more »
  • An amazing stop! So thankful that the people who own the land have opened for others to enjoy. It is well marked from rte 107, but after that it could be missed. Google map and save the map...cell service sucks out there.
  • An amazing piece of history! I had heard most of the marking were barely visible but they're easily seen! Worth exploring!
  • An amazing place to visit. Probably one of the most underrated and unappreciated historical monument. Depicts the story of an ancient Cherokee historical find. This is a hugh soapstone rock, the size of a large sedan with amazing symbols that was uncovered and is now because of the charity of an individual is now on display for everyone to appreciate.
  • Love a mystery. Thousands of years old & no one left that can translate it. They do need to cover it from weather. Was fine until white people found it & started abusing it.
  • Place is in much better shape than it use to be. Better maintained and controlled. Awesome site.

Plan your trip to Cullowhee

  • Get a personalized trip
    A complete day by day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it
    Refine your trip. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it
    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it
    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.