South Cumberland State Recreation Area

South Cumberland is a hikers paradise with a selection of trials to suit almost any interest and physical capability.  All trails are marked with direction trail signs at trail junctions and painted blazers along the way.  Trails are very easy to follow, the only exception being in the late fall and early winter when heavy fallen leaf cover can sometimes hide the  way.  Detailed topographical maps are available at the Visitor Center, at Grundy Forest, the Stone Door Ranger Station or the Savage Gulf Ranger Station.  Visit:



Buggytop Cave

Distance of 2 miles. Rated easy. Buggytop Cave is said to be the largest cave opening in the state - 80 feet high and 100 feet wide. The cave is formed by the running water and rock breakdown through this finger of the plateau.

Located near Tracy City. Trail terminates at overlook into Lost Cove.







Fiery Gizzard Trail  
This trail has length options of 10 miles round trip, rated medium or 17-miles one-way featuring cascading streams, numerous waterfalls, panoramic overlooks, extremely rocky gorges, gentle slopes and lush woodlands. This trail is one of the most diverse and beautiful in the state and the 17-mile option has been ranked as one of the top twenty-five backpacking trails in the U. S. by Backpacker magazine. There are four primitive campgrounds along the trail. Start at the Grundy Forest Natural Area Picnic Shelter.  Descend into the gorge, passing some spectacular rock formations, including Chimney Rock. The rocky terrain, especially on the Fiery Gizzard Trail, makes the hike strenuous. To avoid the rocks, take the Fiery Gizzard Trail to the Dog Hole Trail. As hikers approach the overlook at Raven Point, they will pass waterfalls, a 500-year-old hemlock tree, and interesting bits of history.

Directions: Traveling I-24, take Exit 135 to Tracy City. Follow the signs to the Grundy Forest .


North Rim Trail to Tommy’s Overlook

13.8 miles round-trip with fairly level terrain. Begin Hiking at the Savage Gulf Ranger Station. Go almost 2 miles on the Savage Day Loop Trail then follow the North Rim Trail 5 miles to Tommy’s Overlook for a great view of the three gulfs converging.

Directions: From Chattanooga , take US 127 to Dunlap; then TN 111 to TN 399. Follow the signs to the Savage Gulf State Natural Area Ranger Station.


Savage Gulf Day Loop

5-mile loop trail. Easy and great for the beginning hiker! Savage Falls is a short distance off the loop down the South Rim Trail. 


Directions: From Chattanooga, take US 127 to Dunlap then TN 111 to TN 399. Follow the signs to the Savage Gulf State Natural Area Ranger Station.


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