Join us on this exclusive historic driving tour of the east side of the Burnett Reservoir to explore part of the once thriving North Fork Valley community. The trip stops at Sunalee Lodge, then to the home place of Champ Burnett. From there, we will drive to Colonel John Connally’s home site which has extensive ruins including two standing chimneys. The caravan will make a stop to include a short 5 -10 minute walk from the vehicles to the home sites of Will and Bart Burnett and a slave cemetery. A final stop will be made at the Right Hand Fork Intake.

Difficulty: Moderate; There will be some walking on rough terrain. Wear sturdy shoes and dress for the weather.

Pack: Please bring your lunch, snacks, and a drink. This is primarily a driving tour, but you may also want to bring a full water bottle, a hat, hiking poles, rain gear, and any personal medications you may need in a small day pack. You may bring a camera to take photographs for personal (non-commercial) use.


Attendees may register per vehicle or per individual. Attendees bringing a vehicle may bring as many people in their vehicle as they wish. Vehicles must get clearance from our trip leader prior to registering as a driver. Please read the vehicle requirements below. We have a limited number of individual spots for individuals who can ride in truck beds and cabs with hike leaders. To register, whether as an individual or with a vehicle, email A registration link will be shared after approval.

Cost and Registration:

  • Non-Member Vehicles: $175
  • Member Vehicles: $130
  • Individual Adult: $75
  • Individual Adult Member: $50

Vehicles must meet the following criteria-

  • 4×4 
  • Transmission with extra low gears
  • Proper ground clearance. 

The sign-in for the event will be conducted outdoors, at the parking lot of the Black Mountain Savings Bank.

Please direct any inquiries to