Frozen Head State Park – Tennessee


We rolled in around 5 pm to Frozen Head State Park – Tennessee


The Ranger’s office was closed but Ranger Joe saw us studying the map, stopped his mower, jumped down and came to see if he could help.  He let us in to use the bathroom and he answered our questions. He said, “Emory Falls is the best short hike for this time of day”. “It’s a 3 mile round trip.”

I asked where there was a good primitive campsite at the highest elevation where we would have a cool summer night. He pointed out Tub Spring camp because it was around 3,000 feet in elevation and it had a real spring. So even in the summer when the seasonal water was gone, there would be water at this site. “We hope to go there this summer,” I told him. He headed back to his mower and we went to follow his advise.


So happy to be out of the car and on the trail.  We were coming back from Knoxville so we had our hiking legs cooped up for a couple of hours.


Debord Falls at about .6 miles down the Panther Branch Trail. Down in volume from the spring time but still fun to see.


My Honey reaching for a bit of refreshment! I love that she has unleashed her desire to be in the water. We plan to always take water shoes and bathing suits from now on. It would have been fun to wade in and splash around a bit.


Having fun under Debord Falls! Kind of like a photo booth…with water.


A cairn marking the way for something. It was in the middle of the creek no where near the trail. Maybe someone wanted the water to know where to go when it comes back after the next rain.  Cairn proved to be valuable for me in Yosemite in the granite fields. There is no sign of a trail so you just look for the next Cairn.


Back out to the Panther Branch Trail for .4 more miles to Emory Falls.


Love this root art along the way!


My Honey looking up at me from the bottom of Emory Falls.


Pausing for a moment of worship.


Back at the truck we found new beauty unfolding.

One more example of seizing the moment. We had just a few hours but there was a trail near by. We wanted to do so much more but we will go back. We had heard that this is like the Great Smoky Mountains Nation Park but without the crowds. The elevation is about half of the Smoky Mountains but the trails, bridges and water falls are just like the Smokies. If you had blindfolded me and started me on this trail with our knowing where I was, you could have told me it was a new trail in the Great Smoky Mountains Nation Park.


Seize the day, seize whatever you can 
‘Cause life slips away just like hourglass sand” Carolyn Arends

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