7 Adventures for June #TSP80

May 26, 2017  |  Permalink

The summer season is in full swing at our parks and June is jam-packed. This month is known for Free Fishing Day (always the Saturday of the first full week in June), Father's Day and of course our 8 Adventures for June! Here are a few of our favorite 80th Anniversary must-do adventures to take you through the month. 

Reading Ranger Trail at Long Hunter State Park

(Educational Adventure)

Long Hunter State Park is a popular local retreat for Nashville residents. Long Hunter State Park offers a variety of recreational activities including fishing and hiking and has two boat launch ramps on J. Percy Priest Lake. More than 20 miles of hiking trails provide a variety of terrain and habitats and range from pleasant strolls to longer jaunts for the more adventurous. 

One of the newest trails at Long Hunter seeks to help kids learn to read while engaging them with the creatures that live in the forest. The short, 0.25-mile Reading Ranger loop trail allows kids the chance to hike along the pathway and see colorful illustrations from a children’s book that we converted into display panels. This is the first such trail in Tennessee State Parks, and is perfect for parents of young children. (Please note, the story panels are replaced with a new story periodically. The story depicted in the book cover image above, may not be on view.


Brewer’s Cabin at Chickasaw State Park

(Historic Adventure)

Chickasaw State Park was named for the Chickasaw Indians who once inhabited West Tennessee and North Mississippi. It is located south of Jackson, Tennessee, and sits on some of the highest terrain in west Tennessee.

This historic Brewer Cabin, built in 1876, serves as a reminder of days gone by. Visitors can step back into this late 19th Century cabin on guided tours every Saturday at 2pm. For those who want to make an overnight getaway, the park offers cabins and campsites in addition to a wide variety of activities. Visitors will enjoy horseback riding, mountain biking, paddling and hiking.


Dunbar Cave Tour Dunbar Cave State Park

(Natural Wonder Adventure)

Dunbar Cave State Park is located in Clarksville, Tennessee, and is home to one of the largest caves in Montgomery County. This eight-mile long cave houses hieroglyphs dating back to 1350 AD and was the home of country music legend Roy Acuff’s Saturday Night Radio Dance Broadcast.

The cave is home to several rare animals including the federally endangered gray bat, a blind cave crayfish and the southern cavefish. To help protect these creatures, the cave is only open to guided tours from May to July. Tours are offered Wednesday through Sunday in the month of June. Just call the park at 931-648-5526 to reserve your slot.


Hazard Cave Tour at Pickett CCC Memorial State Park

(Natural Wonder Adventure)

Pickett CCC Memorial State Park is located North of Crossville, Tennessee, along the Kentucky border. It is one of Tennessee’s oldest state parks, yet it is also one of our best kept secrets. The terrain of Pickett and Pogue Creek Canyon-an adjacent state natural area the park manages-features beautiful rock faces, mesas, and overlooks.

Hazard Cave is its sight to behold, but the creatures that call it home are even more enthralling! Hazard Cave is one of the few places in the world that one can view glow worms. (Well, technically, they’re bioluminescent maggots of a fungus gnat species, but you probably don’t care about technicalities!) Imagine the cave illuminated like the night sky with thousands of these little glow-in-the-dark creatures. It’s a spectacular occurrence, and one you will only see in the month of June. Park rangers will offer guided tours of the cave throughout June. Watch the park calendar to find information about dates and times.

There really is no way that you can tackle everything Pickett has to offer in just a day trip. From hiking and canoeing, to cave tours and dark sky viewing parties, this park will enchant you. We suggest you plan a couple of days to disconnect (there’s not a lot of cell service) and come enjoy a cabin or campsite at one Tennessee’s most unique parks.


Boating/Picnicking at Indian Mountain State Park

(Recreational Adventure)

Indian Mountain State Park is a 200-acre park located on Tennessee’s northern border in Campbell County. The park sits at the base of Indian Mountain and was a reclamation project to convert abandoned coal mining pits into a recreational area. The park features a charming little lake with the mountain as a backdrop. It’s a great destination for a couple or family that might wish to grab a blanket, pack a lunch basket, and head out for an afternoon.

The park provides campsites for guests who wish to stay overnight. They also offer pedal boat and row boat rentals for visitors who wish to get off the bank and out on to the lake.


Great Falls at Rock Island State Park

(Waterfall Adventure)

Rock Island State Park is located in Sparta, Tennessee, just South of Cookeville. It is an easy drive from Nashville or Chattanooga, and is a popular attraction among lovers of large rock faces and stunning waterfalls. Great Falls is a 30-foot horseshoe cascading waterfall, located below the 19th century cotton textile mill that it powered over 100 years ago. It is one of several waterfalls in the park, and a popular destination for warm summer days.

A word of caution for anyone visiting Rock Island State Park this summer: The Tennessee Valley Authority is conducting maintenance on the dam right now. Until the end of July, the dam is spilling massive amounts of water into the gorge. When TVA Great Falls Dam is releasing water, visitors cannot safely enter the TVA gorge spillway area. When you visit the park, make sure to obey all signage about trail and area closures. We want you to have a safe visit to the park.

If you want to stay overnight, Rock Island offers cabin and campsite rentals.


Triple Falls at Rocky Fork State Park

(Waterfall Adventure)

Nestled along the border of Tennessee and North Carolina, Rocky Fork State Park is a 2,000-acre wilderness about 30 minutes from Johnson City. It is one of our newest state parks, and one of the prettiest places you will find. The stream running through the park is riddled with large, moss-covered boulders, deep pools, and excellent trout fishing. Old logging roads cut through the park and provide access trails to stunning views and fantastic hikes. The park even has a connector point to the Appalachian Trail.

Triple Falls is located near the front of the park and is just a short hike in from the parking lot. In the month of June, visitors will notice blooming rhododendron blooms throughout the woods. The vibrant colors of the moss, and the rhododendrons, coupled with the peacefulness of the rushing waters make Triple Falls a place worthy of your bucket list in June. Photo: Tim Gillahan.



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About the 80 Adventures Blog

This year, we want to help you get outdoors.  Whether you are a history buff or a waterfall chaser, Tennessee State Parks has something for you. To celebrate our 80th anniversary, we’ve put together a list of 80 adventures that stretch across all 56 of our parks. Each month, we’ll give you a few of those activities that represent some of the best adventures we have to offer. While most of the events are available year round, we will include ones that we think are best to experience during a particular month.

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