Prentice Cooper State Forest 'Cooper State Sky' © Joshua Mark Sosna
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USA Parks
Cumberland Plateau Region
Prentice Cooper State Forest
Prentice Cooper State Forest
'Cooper State Sky'
© Joshua Mark Sosna

Prentice Cooper State Forest is located in southeastern Tennessee, in Marion County. The forest is approximately 10 miles west of Chattanooga and is heavily utilized by the public. It is situated on the scenic Tennessee River Gorge. The property for Prentice Cooper was acquired by simple purchase between 1938 and 1944. The site was proclaimed a State Forest in 1945. Sixty-nine percent of the forest are in multiple-use regulated forests and the remainder is in conservation areas. Approximately 6,939 acres are designated as unregulated scenic zones that protect this view shed and other scenic areas of the forest. Hicks Gap Natural Area (350 acres) also occurs in the forest and was developed to protect the federally endangered Large-flowered Skullcap. The forest also includes several in-holdings owned by Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and 3 cemeteries. Management activities of the forest focus primarily on sustainable timber management, forest management demonstration and wildlife habitat improvement while maintaining recreational opportunities for the public. There are 35 miles of hiking trails, including the south end of the Cumberland Trail State Park. There also are two designated camping areas. Tennessee Department of Agriculture, Forestry Division has provided labor and portions of the forest for various types of research in collaboration with the University of Tennessee. Hunting has been a traditional use of the forest. Other recreational activities include OHV use in designated areas, rock climbing, hiking, Mountain biking, horseback riding, bird watching, and camping.

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Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
March 31 Interesting park by bteresa11
Went there on a field trip and would like to talk to one of the rangers about questions on my Environmental Science trip there
April 9 Great Place for the outdoorsman by Doug
I usually go there to take my ATV and Truck to go offroading during the summer. I have been hiking there once. There are quite a few hiking/biking trails with lots of scenery. There is primitive camping at the gates, as well as a designated camping spot within the park. The spots at the gate are big enough for a camper or toy hauler unless it is a busy weekend for off roaders.
April 7 our favorite park by Shery Moorer
We love it. It is a great place for the family vacation. It has something for everyone.Every time we come more and more family and friends come and love it.
February 17 Really nice place by Ladyfriend4u1
I went up there for the first time this past weekend and it is a beautiful area. I was also impressed with how well it was maintained.
October 29 Decent Shooting range by Hixsonite
I have only been to the shooting range. It is decent, they have places to hang your targets at 100 yards, 50 yards, and a handgun range that is 20 yards(?) and less. You cant shoot a shotgun out there. But the best part is that its free! And if your going to the range or the hunting part be sure to follow the small signs, otherwise you may just pass it up.

Area Campgrounds

Best Holiday Trav-L-Park Chattanooga
1709 Mack Smith Road
Chattanooga, TN

Raccoon Mountain RV Park
319 West Hills Drive
Chattanooga, TN

Area Fishing Related Businesses
Choo Choo Fly & Tackle
17 Cherokee Blvd
Chattanooga, TN
(423) 267-0024

Jack's Bait & Tackle Shop
4228 Bonny Oaks Dr
Chattanooga, TN
(423) 698-8339

Bait Shop
1401 Williams St
Chattanooga, TN
(423) 266-6422

Area Cabins and Lodges
Hoppy's Last Resort
3950 Tennessee Ave
Chattanooga, TN
(423) 825-7177

Read House Hotel & Suites
827 Broad St
Chattanooga, TN
(423) 266-4121

Marriott Hotels Resorts Suites: Chattanooga Marriott at the Convention Center
2 Carter Plaza
Chattanooga, TN
(423) 756-0002

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USA Parks
Cumberland Plateau Region
Prentice Cooper State Forest
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