As the first linear state park in Tennessee, the Justin P. Wilson Cumberland Trail State Park offers sweeping vistas and enjoyable hikes and is home to important habitat along the Cumberland Plateau’s pristine ridges and deep gorges. The Land Trust for Tennessee is one of multiple partners working to expand and conserve this resource, aiding in the conservation of 5,300 acres and 30 miles of existing or planned trail corridor.
About the Cumberland Trail
The Cumberland Trail, once complete, will extend 282 miles from Cumberland Gap, on the Tennessee, Virginia, and Kentucky border to the Tennessee River gorge, near the Tennessee, Alabama, and Georgia border. Creating a park that spans 11 Tennessee counties takes a tremendous collaborative effort from Tennessee State Parks, The Cumberland Trails Conference, volunteers, supporters, and multiple conservation partners.
WATCH: May 2020 Interview with Cumberland Trail Manager Bobby Fulcher
From the Ground Level: Adding to the Cumberland Trail
The Land Trust for Tennessee’s work to conserve land for the Cumberland Trail includes:
- Acquiring 1,050 acres along Soak Creek that connected Stinging Fork State Natural Area to Piney Falls State Natural Area in Bledsoe and Rhea Counties. This win created a 10 mile corridor for the Cumberland Trail.
- Acquiring 26-acres of land near the Graysville Mountain unit of the Cumberland Trail, which provides a critical link in the trail that was about to be developed. The trail corridor connected Black Mountain with Ozone Falls.
- Completing a conservation easement to protect land on the Graysville Mountain property, which led to the acquisition of 3,200 acres for the Cumberland Trail in Rhea and Hamilton counties.
- Completing a conservation easement with the Town of Signal Mountain to protect Rainbow Lake and other town-owned parkland in Hamilton County. This area connects to the southern terminus of the Cumberland Trail and provides visitors with sweeping views of the Tennessee River gorge from the trail.