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Location: Long Hunter State Park; Hermitage, TN
Trail Length: Apprx. 12 miles (including the 4 mi. Day Loop)
Solitude: Moderate to crowded (often busy on weekends)
This hike is a bit of a lollipop trail, but most of it is an out and back (so this lollipop has a long stem.) The lollipop involves the day loop, which only accounts for 4 miles of the 12 miles round trip. The vast majority of the Volunteer trail traces the shoreline of Percy Priest Lake. The dominant features of the trail, both by the shore and the few spots a bit deeper in the woods, are mossy limestone rock jumbles and a surprisingly mature forest heavy with oak, cedar, and hickory. Despite the rocky terrain, the trail is pretty easy to traverse and the elevation changes are very modest. A few very small bluffs do provide a bit of an overlook view of Percy Priest, though most of the hike allows for easy access to the lake for swimming in warm weather. The hike to the campsite is 5.5 miles and sits right on the edge of the lake. I saw several heron on the lake and almost ran into a pair of deer quietly foraging by the trail on my hike in. Once I reached Campsite 1, which sits right on the bank of the lake, I was pleased for the opportunity to take a swim and filter some water. This particular site (two are available) had a large fire ring with three big half-log benches surrounding it.
Park InformationA permit is required for backcountry camping and must be obtained at the park office.
Office Phone: (615) 885-2422
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