Upper Piney Falls
Upper Piney Falls, Tennessee, USA
A favorite waterfall on the Cumberland Plateau.
Explore one of the most amazing waterfall trails in Tennessee: Piney Falls!
Piney Falls is absolutely stunning and one of my favorite (if not my favorite) waterfalls in Tennessee. It’s set in 818 acres of designated natural area. The 1.7 mile lollipop loop has gorgeous trees, boulders, and creeks. It’s also recognized by the United States Department of Interior as a National Natural Landmark (1 of 14 in Tennessee!).
Little Piney Creek plunges 80 feet over Upper Piney Falls into a pool and then apparently drops another 40 feet over Lower Piney Falls (we never could figure out how to see Lower Piney Falls well as we just got to the top of Lower Piney and couldn’t really see the falls only a sharp drop). But Upper Piney is worth the walk (frankly, I'd avoid the trail to Lower Piney and keep heading toward Upper Piney)! It’s an amazing hike because it loops you under the falls and then you climb hard and get to cross the creek at the top. Please use caution with kids. If you go clockwise (we did), you will need to use the installed cable to help pull yourself up to the top of the creek (I've included a picture so you can assess risk in advance). My 4.5 year old managed fine but she is very experienced and for a stretch, my husband and I were basically passing her up the rocky steep hill.
If you can make it, it is SO rewarding. When we were there in January, we only passed two other families.