work-in-progress, the Cumberland Trail is a remote footpath that
will pass north to south through 11 Tennessee counties on the
eastern escarpment of the Cumberland Plateau. Once
completed, the trail corridor will be contained on public lands.
Presently, 176 miles are maintained and open for hiking and
other outdoor activities. These miles are divided into 14
different segments. Between these segments, land
acquisition for the proposed trail corridor is an on-going
process, so gaps in the proposed trail route do exist. The
Cumberland Trail Conference working with Tennessee’s Department
of Environment and Conservation, other government agencies, and
private organizations are all diligently working to acquire the
needed land and close the gaps. The open sections are all
uniquely different and allow hikers access to remote areas
preserved for their natural or scenic beauty that cannot be
For trail users interested in
over-night camping, regulations vary depending on the land
managing agency. Some backcountry sites have been
established that require registration, while in other areas
camping is allowed anywhere but Leave No Trace practices are
encouraged. Please see the rules and regulations for the
particular section of trail of interest. As with most remote
backcountry, water sources, all drinking water should be
addition to providing quality outdoor experiences and supporting
tourism, the CT brings opportunities for conservation education
and the protection of natural and cultural resources.
Tennessee's hiking trails are a prime attraction to the most
visited parks and provide numerous opportunities for
environmental and cultural education. The CT brings
watershed and view shed protection, greenway corridors, and
wildlife conservation to this rich ecological region.
Located in an economically challenged region; the Cumberland
Trail will provide both recreation and viable renewable economic
opportunities to the communities of the Cumberland Plateau.
Furthermore, the Cumberland Trail is a major component of the
Great Eastern Trail. Once
completed, this trail will provide hikers with an alternative to
the relatively crowded Appalachian Trail.
Download the latest Cumberland Trail Map