South Cumberland State Park

Quick Facts

South Cumberland State Park

Tennessee

(931) 924-2980

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

South Cumberland is one of the newer Tennessee state parks. Most of the park lies on top of the Cumberland Plateau. Unlike most state parks, Couth Cumberland is made up of ten different areas located in four different counties. It covers a total of 17,000 acres. The visitor center is located between Monteagle and Tracy City on Highway 41. The various components of the park are managed from there. Visitors can also obtain information and directions from the visitor center. The visitor center contains exhibits depicting local history and wildlife.

The park has opportunities for caving, hiking, and backcountry camping, as well as tennis and picnicking in the frontcountry. Hikers can see spectacular rock formations, beautiful waterfalls, rocky gorges, panoramic overlooks, and lush woodlands. The Stone Door area offers challenging rappelling and rock climbing. There is climbing but no rappelling at Foster Falls. Carter Cave introduces hikers to one mile of underground adventures.

Map of South Cumberland (TN)

Latitude, Longitude: 35.819440, -85.181940

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Activities

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    Tour buses are welcome at the park.

  • Camping

    Visitors can camp in the backcountry of Savage Gulf State Natural Area. Campers must use designated sites only. A camping permit is required and can be obtained at the visitor center or at the trailheads. The permit instructions must be followed and the permit must be filled out completely. Water is available from springs and streams except in dry periods. This water must be treated to make it safe for consumption. Primitive toilets are available at the designated campsites.

    Permits are required for backcountry backpacking camping.

  • Caving

    Visitors can explore Buggytop Cave. Beginners are encouraged to contact the visitor center to arrange for a ranger to accompany their group and interpret the cave environment. Remember, safety comes first when planning a rewarding backcountry outing.

  • Climbing

    The Stone Door area offers challenging rappelling and rock climbing. There is climbing but no rappelling at Foster Falls.

  • Hiking

    The park has 90 miles of hiking trails ranging from easy to very rugged. Popular hiking trails include Savage Gulf, Stone Door, Grundy Forest, Hawkins Cove, Carter State Natural Area, Sewanee Bridge, Foster Falls, and Grundy Lake.

  • Historic Sites

    The park museum displays the natural and cultural history of the South Cumberland area. Admission is free.

  • Hunting

    During late November, December and early January, big game hunting is allowed on the private property that portions of the park's trails traverse. Hikers during this period should wear at least 500 square inches of blaze orange and hike with caution.

  • Picnicking

    The park has two picnic pavilions. Grundy Forest accommodates around 25 people and the pavilion close to the visitor center holds around 50-60 people. Pavilions may be reserved.

    There are eight individual picnic areas, each equipped with grills. The seating capacity ranges from ten to 50 depending on the particular picnic site.

  • Tennis

    The park has two tennis courts.

  • Water Sports

    Unsupervised swimming areas can be found at Grundy Lakes as well as any creek or splash pool located in the park. To ensure safety, all diving is prohibited.

Seasonality/Weather

Summer average temperatures range from 83 F to 62 F. Winter temperatures range from 26 F to 48 F.

Directions

Driving

To get to South Cumberland State Park, take exit 134 off I-24, take a right to Monteagle, turn left on Hwy. 41, drive three miles and the visitors center is located on the left.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(931) 924-2980

Links