Cum­ber­land Trail State Park, TN

Backpacker - - NEWS -

Good hikes usu­ally mean good crowds, but win­ter clears the planned 330mile Cum­ber­land Trail along the Cum­ber­land Plateau. For the best week­end-size chunk, tackle a 22.1-mile point-to-point through the Three Gorges sec­tion. “The path hardly strays from a crash­ing white­wa­ter stream en­cased in a steep-walled gorge,” says Bob Fulcher, the man­ager of Cum­ber­land Trail State Park. In win­ter, fine crys­tals from the fall’s spray glaze the rock walls. Start at Soddy Creek and hike north across two sus­pen­sion bridges and an old coal mine; camp at Lit­tle Pos­sum Creek Camp­site (mile 10.5).

SHUT­TLE 35.410100, -85.130933; 31 miles north of Chat­tanooga on Legget Rd. TRAIL­HEAD 35.281617, -85.193500; 20 min­utes south of shut­tle on Hot­wa­ter Rd. PER­MIT free; friend­soft­he­cum­ber­land­trail.org CON­TACT cum­ber­land­trail.org

Lit­tle Pos­sum Creek Falls (lo­cals call it Imod­ium Falls) lies at mile 17.2.

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