Fall Creek Falls State Park and WMA
From Nashville: take I-40 East to exit 288 in Cookeville. Turn right onto 111 South. Park entrance is on the left on Highway 284 (40 miles from I-40 to the park).
From Atlanta: take I-75 North to Chattanooga, take I-24 toward Nashville, take Hwy 27 North toward Dayton and follow Highway 111 North to the park entrance on the right.
From Knoxville: take I-40 West to exit 322, Peavine Road, in Crossville. Take a left off the exit, onto Hwy 101 South. At the 4-way stop, go straight on Hwy 392, through the first traffic light (at hwy 127).
Continue straight to the 2nd traffic light (Lantana Road, Hwy 101). Take a left turn onto Hwy 101 South, and travel approx. 30 minutes to a dead-end. Turn left (still on Hwy 101 South) and go approx. 4 miles to Hwy 30. Turn right on Hwy 30 West. Park entrance is approx. 5 miles on the left (at Hwy 284).
Lat: 35.65457°N Long: -85.36657°W
Hours: open 24 hrs a day, with the gate to the falls being locked at dark.
Seasonality: year round
Site Description: A paradise of more than 20,000 acres sprawled across the eastern top of the rugged Cumberland Plateau, Fall Creek Falls State Park is one of the most scenic and spectacular outdoor recreation areas in the United States.
Laced with cascades, gorges, waterfalls, streams, and lush stands of virgin hardwood timber, the park beckons those who enjoy nature at her finest. While Fall Creek Falls, at 256 feet, is the highest waterfall in the eastern United States, other waterfalls in the park are Piney and Cane Creek Falls and Cane Creek Cascades.
The oak and hickory forest that covers most of the park gives way to tulip poplar and hemlock forest in the gorges. The plants and animals of the moist, protected gorges are not unlike the species found in southern Canada. Mountain laurel and rhododendron are abundant throughout the park, as are other plants and animals.
Many of the features of the park can be viewed from overlooks, but the park also boasts extensive hiking trails offering a visitor the chance to explore the area more deeply. This park is considered a must see for any visitor to the region.
Wildlife to Watch: Woodland birds are common year round, including Turkey Vulture, Red-tailed Hawk, Wild Turkey, Eastern Screech-Owl, Great Horned Owl, Pileated Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, and White-breasted Nuthatch.
Spring and fall migration is an excellent time to see Black-throated Green Warblers, occasional Blackburnian Warbler, Wood Thrush, Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Worm-eating Warbler, Great Crested Flycatchers, and Acadian Flycatchers.
Some of these migrants breed on site as well. Wildflowers are a highlight of this area is spring.
Copperhead snakes are commonly found along trails.