Knoxville, TN

Hiking Trails: Burgess Falls State Park

Big Falls overlook

Near: Cookeville, TN



Trails: The trail is a loop that takes you down the river, across the ridge, and back to the parking lot. It’s divided into three sections:

  • River Trail (0.8 miles): Takes you from the parking lot downstream, past three different waterfall overlooks. (The middle falls overlook was closed due to flood damage when I hiked it, though you could still get a view of the falls from the trail.) It ends in an impressive overlook of the Big Falls.
  • Top of the Big Falls

    Trail to Falls: This is a steep descent that takes you from the Big Falls overlook to the top of the Big Falls. (Again, due to damage, the stairway to the base of the Big Falls was closed when I hiked it.) Even without access to the base of the falls, it’s worth the trip down. You can explore upstream a short way, as well as sit directly at the top of the falls.

  • Ridge Top Trail (0.5 miles): This trail connects the Big Falls overlook to an access road that will lead you back to the parking lot. It continues downstream from the Big Falls for a ways, providing a few additional overlooks into the gorge below.

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