This substantial 38 miles trail in Harlan and Letcher Counties runs between Harlan and Whitesburg, KY, and passes Kingdom Come State Park. The scenic mountaintop road is used by hikers, horseback riders, cars, and four-wheel-drive enthusiasts. A developed campground is available at Kingdom Come State Park, located part-way along.
Location contains a hiking trail or trails
Located on the banks of a 2,242 acre lake, Yatesville Lake State Park provides great opportunities for fishing, boating, and hiking. In addition to several hiking trails (including a 20-miler), the park has a 27 site regular campground, with a unique twist: its 20 primitive sites are either “boat-in” or “hike-in.” If your unit is looking for a practice location for a canoe trip, Yatesville Lake might be a good location to try!
Phone: (606) 673-1490
Address: 2667 Pleasant Ridge Road, Louisa, KY 41230
This 2,712 acre park is located on fifteen hundred acre Grayson Lake. The park features 71 campsites, boat launching facilities, a beach, and hiking trails. It is located six miles south of Grayson, KY. For Scouts, this park could serve as a base camp for hiking the Api-Su-Ahts Trail. The park is open year-round.
Phone: (606) 474-9727
Address: 314 Grayson Lake State Park Rd., Olive Hill, KY 41164
Cumberland Gap National Park is one of the most scenic parks in Kentucky. Its 24,000 acres lies in Kentucky, Virginia, and Tennessee. The park consists of precipitous mountains clothed with dense deciduous hardwood forests. The park is open year-round.
For Scouts, the Mischa Mokwa Adventure Trail is the largest highlight of the park. The ~20 mile long Mischa Mokwa is composed of three trails: the Gibson Gap Trail, the Ridge Trail, and the Ewing Trail. The Wilderness Road Campground offers a place to base-camp. Backcountry camping on top of the ridge is only permitted in the designated primitive sites. A free permit from the ranger station is required to camp in the backcountry. Patches for the trail are also available at the ranger station.
Phone: (606) 248-2817
Address: 91 Bartlett Park Road, Middlesboro, KY 40965
This park is named for its giant, natural sandstone bridge located on the park grounds. The park also offers a nature study program of use by visitors to the park. Natural Bridge State Resort Park consists of 83 improved sites and 12 primitive sites. The state resort park is located on Highway 11, ten miles southeast of Stanton, KY. The campgrounds are open from April to October.
Natural Bridge State Resort Park features 9 different trails, ranging from 0.25 miles to 7.5 miles. The geology of the park is indicative of the entire Cumberland Plateau Region, and features deep ravines, high-walled cliffs, and towering rock formations. Some of the park’s more interesting geological features are Balancing Rock, Profile Rock, Lovers Leap, and Natural Bridge. During the off-season the nature center of the park is open by appointment with the park naturalist. Informal walks and nature talks are often held.
Phone: (606) 663-2214
Address: 2135 Natural Bridge Rd., Slade, KY 40376
This supertrail was named in honor of Daniel Boone, who explored the land through which the trail passes. Sheltowee (meaning big turtle) was the Indian name given to Boone when he was adopted into the Shawnee tribe as the son of the great war chief, Blackfish. The Sheltowee Trace is a designated National Recreation Trail, and travels through Yahoo Falls Scenic Area, Cumberland Falls State Park, Laurel River Lake, Wood Creek Lake, Turkey Foot, Natural Bridge, Red River Gorge, and Cave Run Lake.
A map of the Sheltowee Trace can be found here.
This is the home of the second largest waterfall east of the Rocky Mountains – only Niagara Falls is larger. The waterfall mysteriously creates one of only two “moonbows” in the world, as light from a full moon plays upon the mist from the waterfall to produce a rainbow effect. The only other reported moonbow is in South Africa. To get there, turn left at exit 24 on Interstate 75, and follow US 25W until it turns into Highway 90. The park is approximately 4 miles further. The park has 15 primitive sites, and 35 improved ones. Fees are required to camp. The park also contains several trails to the beautiful waterfalls in the park.
Phone: (606) 528-4121
Address: 7351 Hwy. 90, Corbin, KY 40701
Breaks Interstate Park is located in Pike County, Kentucky, and Buchanan and Dickenson Counties, Viriania. It is unique in the fact that it is managed by both the Virginia and Kentucky Departments of Parks. It has 5 trails ranging from 0.35 to 12 miles in length.
Phone: (276) 865-4413
Address: 627 Commission Circle, Breaks, VA 24607
Camp Blanton used to be a Boy Scout camp, but is now privately managed. The camp is located five miles west of Harlan, KY, on US 119. It has a lake, and offers boating, canoeing, swimming, and fishing opportunities. The camp also has cabins, primitive campsites, and a five mile undeveloped trail to the unusual Knobby Rock.
Phone: (606) 573-6811
Address: 4294 Hwy 840, Harlan, KY 40831
Big South Fork is a newly developed recreation area managed by the National Park Service and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It is located in Kentucky’s McCreary County and Tennessee’s Scott and Pickett Counties. It offers many miles of hiking, backpacking, and horseback riding on the terrain of the Cumberland Plateau. The trail system includes the southern end of the Sheltowee Trace National Recreation Trail. Forty miles of horseback trails are also available on the Kentucky side of the Big South Fork. This trail parallels the Cumberland River below the cliff line until it reaches Big Creek, where it climbs above the water. The trail is uphill from this point on, rising 600 feet until reaching US 27 with the trail snaking through creek bottoms. Water availability is good year-round below the cliff line.
Phone (Visitor Information): (606) 376-3787