Take a walk on new suspension bridge in Smoky Mountains

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WATE/CNN) — The longest pedestrian suspension bridge in North America holds more than 200,000 pounds and, at its highest point, is more than 140 feet above the ground. 

Gatlinburg’s latest attraction is the talk of the town. 

When you step off the SkyLift and make your way to the bridge, your inner chicken may reaches greater heights. Taking that first step is a moment of truth, but, soon, you realize it isn’t so bad after all … and the views were worth it.

Marcus Watson is the marketing coordinator for SkyLift Park. He takes pride in showing off one of Gatlinburg’s oldest attractions — and now it’s newest.

Watson said, “It’s definitely a big deal, being almost 700 feet long, the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in North America. It’s something not just locals are excited about, but everywhere across the country, people are asking about, when is it going to be open, what’s the experience when you’re up there, what’s the view that you, all these people inquiring about it and it’s gotten the whole area excited about it and it’s gotten us excited, too, so we’re stoked about it.”

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It’s made up of 129 cedar panels with three glass panels taking up 15 feet in the middle.

SkyLift Park Gatlinburg’s SkyBridge hangs across the length of more than two football fields.

Watson said if you’re walking with a purpose, you could get across it in about 90 seconds to two minutes. But with the view alongside the bridge, That’s not likely.

Watson said, “The most beautiful view of the Smoky Mountains you can find in gatlinburg. You can see the three highest peaks from the bridge that’s in the Smokies, which is Clingmans Dome, Mount Guyot, and Mount Le Conte. So, the entire time you’re up there, there’s a beautiful panoramic view, an expansive view of the Smoky Mountains and that kind of tops the whole experience while you’re up there.”

While Watson is thrilled the bridge is getting national attention, he said he’s even more excited to see a spotlight shine on Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains.

“What’s so cool about this job is the mornings when you ride up, you step on that bridge and you look at this view. It never gets old. I can say I believe we live in one of the most beautiful parts of this country. That’s something guests are going to see when they come up and step on that bridge.”

So, what’s the weight limit?

“If you had 500 people on this bridge and each person weighed 400 pounds, you’d still be under the weight capacity; so, in other words, you’re safe and secure,” Watson said.

SkyBridge opens to the public Friday.