At last the steady, warm temperatures of spring have arrived! I don’t know about you, but when the weather is nice, it is so difficult to keep me indoors.
Recently we were able to take a trip home to Dad and Mom’s house in Tennessee. My parents live in an amazingly beautiful area in the Cumberland Mountain region and we love to take advantage of gorgeous days; looking for fun and adventure whenever we are in town. This last trip found us venturing off to Foster Falls Small Wild Area for a little hiking. Foster Falls is in Marion County, about a 40 minutes drive west of Chattanooga. It is a part of the South Cumberland State Park area which also includes Grundy Lakes and the old coke ovens we visited last spring.
Foster Falls is not a new area to us at all as we have camped (mostly primitive camping) there several times over the years and my kids frequent the area when they are with their grands. While the camping is nice, Foster Falls is well-known for its hiking, especially its climbing, and of course a gorgeous 60 ft water fall.
Hiking around the falls is available for all levels, from the casual to the endurance hiker. We enjoy the trail down to the base of the falls, which is not difficult, but can be rocky as well as slippery if there has been a lot of rain. It’s about a 15-20 minute hike down to the falls.
At the base there are other trails as well as a deep pool that is so cold even in the summer!
Longer hikes include trails that eventually lead you to the portion of South Cumberland State Park known as the Fiery Gizzard trail (12.5 miles one way) and is a very popular trail to hike!
Climbing is the same way. My kids did a little free-climbing while we were there, but we have brought gear before for attempting some serious climbing! The area is actually known to be a prime destination for serious climbers in the Southeast!
Pack a picnic, bring plenty of water, and plan to spend the day if you come out. There is much for you to enjoy! Foster Falls is dog friendly and you will encounter many along the trails. Leashes are a must, and remember to bring baggies to clean up after your pet.
If you don’t camp, lodging is available in both Kimball, Tennessee down in the valley, and in Monteagle , Tennessee on the top of the mountain near the main entrance to South Cumberland State Park. Plan for several days to soak up nature and history all around the roughly 25,000 acres that comprise this state park system.