Longest pedestrian suspension bridge in US opens in Tennessee next month

Posted at 4:12 AM, May 01, 2019

GATLINBURG, Tenn. – Here’s something to cross off your bucket list: A walk across the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in the United States.

The SkyBridge in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, stretches 680 feet across a valley in the Great Smoky Mountains and opens to the public on May 17.

If you’re afraid of heights, you might want to steer clear. The bridge has glass-floor panels in the middle that allow you to see the ground 140 feet below.

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The bridge is part of Skylift Park, which features a chairlift that takes passengers up five hundred vertical feet from Gatlinburg to the top of Crockett Mountain. After the bridge opens, visitors will be able to step off the lift at the top to walk across the bridge and enjoy the views. The chairlift costs $15 per adult and $12 per child.

There is no time limit for crossing the bridge, according to the park’s website. Visitors will be able to take Instagram-worthy photos and soak up the view of downtown Gatlinburg and the surrounding Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

The SkyBridge’s developer claims it is longest pedestrian suspension bridge in North America. But that’s up for debate, depending on whether you measure just the suspended part of a bridge or the total distance between its anchors. A pedestrian suspension bridge at Kelowna Mountain in Canada claims to be more than 800 feet long.

However, both the American and Canadian bridges pale in comparison to the massive Charles Kuonen Suspension Bridge in Switzerland, which boasts the title of the world’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge. Opened in 2017, it spans 1,621 feet and rises as high as 279 feet.