Basin Creek Cove was once home to over 50 families and is now part of Doughton Park, on the Blue Ridge Parkway, MP 238.5 – 244.7. If you take a solitary ten-mile walk (round-trip), you’ll find many artifacts but few people. You’ll cross Basin Creek over 16 times, without bridges, passing elaborate rock formations, cascades and several waterfalls. The trail leads deep in the cove and ends at Caudill Cabin, the only remaining cabin.
When I reached to the cabin, my first thought was “This family didn’t get out very much”. The cabin, a 14 ft. by 16 ft. room with two doors but no window, is propped up by columns of flat stones. It was the home of Martin Caudill who had 14 children. The cabin was restored in 2001 by the National Park Service and the descendants of the Caudill family. Two books on the mantelpiece explain the Caudill genealogy and include photographs of the cabin restoration. When I signed in, I noted that the last person visited here over three weeks ago. Look up toward the Parkway. The trail does not connect to the Blue Ridge Parkway so you need to go back the way you came. In July, 1916, a flood devastated the community and washed almost everything away. Somehow the Caudill Cabin survived.
To get another perspective on Basin Cove, look down from Basin Cove Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway, MP 244.7. To see the cabin from above, go to Wildcat Rocks, which begins at the far end of Bluff Lodge at MP 241. From the left side of the overlook, you can see the cabin down in the clearing.