I’ve been to Fall Creek Falls many times. Mostly for day hikes as it was within a reasonable drive from home. Fall Creek Falls is part of the system of Tennessee state parks and one of if not the best.
The timing of this trip personally, impacted my experience but as promised I will be sharing adventures from a different perspective and this is as good a time as any to start. Luckily as mentioned I have previous trips to the park to draw on.
The first thing you need to know about FCF is that it is super family friendly. There are playgrounds in the camping loops and day use areas. There’s a recently refurbished lodge and plenty of cabins. The lodge ditched it’s old style buffet and replaced it with a modern restaurant complete with full bar and craft beer on tap. Since Sparta, TN is about a half hour to forty minutes away they of course carry beers from Calf Killer Brewery. The food at the restaurant is very good.
FCF has ball fields, tennis and basketball courts, a swimming pool, snack bars, horseback riding, zip lines and a golf course. There’s a big lake and kayak rentals. There’s a swimming spot on the river that runs through the park. You can hike to three waterfalls.
The loop trials around the top of the canyon are the most popular but their are lake trails and others to explore. I hiked two trails this trip, The Paw Paw and Gilbert Gaul trials, that I had never done before and encountered no one at all on the trails. One you probably shouldn’t miss and I have not yet attempted is the Cable trail. You can find info on all of these pretty easily. I use All Trails and would recommend the app.
The park is well maintained, includes a general store that you will probably need as it is not close to any sizable towns. There is also a small outfitter store and a nature museum.
The park is on the Cumberland Plateau so the temps have been cooler here than down in Chattanooga. It’s centrally located and it’s an easy drive from Nashville, Chattanooga or Knoxville.