Maps & Trail Information
Still a 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 otherwise accessed.Hiking the Cumberland Trail
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 treated.
In 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.
The map below shows open trail, trail under construction, and proposed trail. For detailed descriptions of each segment, click the links to the right (listed north to south).