I found some information about the tall poles set accross from each other on several areas on the Cherahala Skyway. The following was taken from Tail of the Dragon web site...

Visitors to the Cherohala Skyway may have seen these odd looking poles in several places near Hooper Bald. Here's the best guess we got: "Poles were used in 1800s by THP to hang riders going too fast on their horses."

Now for the real use ..... these are northern flying squirrel launching poles .... honest. It seems the squirrels can't cross the road to mate so these poles were put up to give them altitude to safely launch themselves across the roadway for sex. The flying tree rats have been equipped with transmitting devices to track their mating habits. Why did the flying squirrel cross the road? To get some on the other side !!! Or as one reader commented, "Now the government is enabling squirrels to join the Mile High Club."