Tennessee State Parks

Burgess Falls State Park

Activities

Birding

Barn and Northern Rough-winged Swallows sally out over the river, and Green and Yellow-crowned Night Herons may be seen during spring and summer at the river’s edge and on a lake created by an early concrete dam. An observation deck overlooks the lake next to the upper parking area, which embraces a large butterfly garden filled with native nectar and larval host plants.

Fishing

Fishing is good for Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, and bream. The most popular fishing sites are below the dam and the main waterfall along the bank and at the fishing pier. There are no public boat ramps or canoe/kayak access areas on the park.

Hiking

The 1.5-mile round-trip River Trail/Service Road Loop is a moderately strenuous hike taking visitors past four waterfalls on the Falling Water River. The waterfalls are 20' cascades, 30' upper falls, 80' middle falls, and 136' lower falls in height. Most people prefer to hike back to the parking lot along the service road. The 1-mile Ridge Top Trail is very scenic with views down the main canyon of the Falling Water River. Please note that the trail from the main overlook to the bottom of the main falls is very strenuous. All trails are foot trails. Bikes, horses, etc. are not permitted.

River Trail  — 0.8 Miles — Natural Surface — Difficult/ strenuous
Trail to base of main falls  — 0.3 Miles — Natural Surface — very strenuous
Ridge Top Trail  — 0.5 Miles — Natural Surface — moderate