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Tennessee State Parks

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USA Parks
Cumberland Plateau Region
Burgess Falls State Natural Area
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Burgess Falls State Natural Area Along the Creek Bed © Ken Bartley
Summer of 2007, Very Dry
Burgess Falls State Natural Area Middle Falls © Ken Bartley
Middle Falls of Burgess Falls
Burgess Falls State Natural Area Blue Stream © Ken Bartley
My first Walk
Burgess Falls State Natural Area Burgess Falls © Don Curry
Burgess Falls State Natural Area Burgess Middle Falls © Don Curry
Burgess Falls State Natural Area Slow Mist © Ken Bartley
The Large Falls
Burgess Falls State Natural Area Summer Mist © Ken Bartley
the Large Falls
Burgess Falls State Natural Area Wild fern © Ken Bartley
Along the Trail
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4000 Burgess Falls Drive
Sparta , Tennessee   38583

Phone: 931-432-5312
Burgess Falls State Natural Area, located in Middle Tennessee, lies on the eastern edge of Tennessee's Highland Rim adjacent to the Cumberland Plateau. This is characterized by sheer bluffs, narrow ridges, rolling water and abundant mixed forest. The Falling Water River runs through the area, providing breathtaking scenery and numerous waterfalls.
Nature of the Area
Burgess Falls Natural Area is a sanctuary. All areas, features, including plants and animals (living and deceased), rocks, minerals, and artifacts are protected by state law. Violators are subject to prosecution. Fires are allowed only in grills. Trails are moderately rugged. Stay on the trails and watch your step. Help us keep the park neat and natural.
Boats are not allowed below the dam and fishing boats are allowed only in the shallow lake above the dam. Due to heavy silting, this is not a desireable lake for boating. Trolling motors are the only type of motor allowed on boats.

There is no boat ramp at Burgess Falls.
Fishing is available on Burgess Falls Lake and on the river below the dam when the park is open. The waters of Center Hill Lake reach the base of Burgess Falls.

Fishermen can expect catches of bream, bass and catfish.

There is no boat ramp.

Valid TN fishing license required.

Burgess Falls State Natural Area is located near Cookeville, Smithville and Sparta

Burgess Falls Natural Area offers picnicking below the dam with a scenic view of the river.

The park has 24 picnic tables, twelve of which are equipped with grills. Picnic tables are not covered and are available on a first come, first serve basis.

A larger, covered picnic shelter is also available and can be reserved up to a year in advance. The shelter is equipped with tables, grills and restrooms. It is ideal for supervised groups such as reunions and church groups.

Shelters can be reserved for a half day (either 9 a.m. ? 1 p.m. or 2 p.m. ? 6 p.m.) or all day 9 a.m. ? 6 p.m. Shelters may be reserved between April ? October.
The primary trail is River Trail ? ? mile long ? non loop. This trail passes three waterfalls. It starts at the picnic area and ends at a platform overlooking the Big Falls.

Trails are moderate in difficulty. All are non-loop, foot trails (bikes, horses, etc., not permitted).

Children should always be accompanied by an adult.

Hikers should always stay on trails.

Combined total length of parks trail is approximately 1 ? miles.
Nature Programs
Throughout the year, the park manager conducts the interpretive programming. The park also conducts park programs to groups upon request within the community (primarily within 25 miles)

Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
October 18 Spectacular falls by STUARTLITTLE963
park review stars; one to five One of the most beautiful waterfalls in Tenn. The entire trail parallels the water. Multiple cascades lead to the grandaddy of them all. A must see if in the area. I would rank the trail easy when compared to others I have been on.
September 18 Great Park Ranger by Janie Ward
park review stars; one to five My husband and I are from Chicago and were visiting a family friend on Sept. 11. She suggested hiking in your park because of the great trails and waterfalls. Our friend was recovering from back surgery so she had to hike at a slower pace snd use her cane. Just prior to reaching the last waterfall we encountered one of the nicest Park Rangers. Nat was his name and he assured us we were headed in the right direction and suggested we use the emergency vehicle road to pick up our friend so she would not have to walk back to the parking lot. He was very knowledgble about the park and so helpful. What a great anbassador he is for the park.
park review stars; one to five This is the most awesome falls and the park rangers and staff make the visits even more enjoyable!! Everyone should stop and get to them!!
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Area Cabins and Lodges
Howard Johnson Lodge
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Hurricane Dock Resort
864 Floating Mill Ln
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Hurrican Dock Resort
1175 Floating Mill Rd
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Alpine Lodge & Suites
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Nearby Hotels

From I-40, take Exit 286. Turn South off the 286 ramp onto State highway 135. Proceed on Hwy 135 for 7 miles following the signs to the park.

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Tennessee State Parks