Choose Your Own Adventure In the Volunteer State

No matter how many trails you hike, backroads you wander, and lakes you swim, Northeast Tennessee is surrounded by ample opportunities to adventure like a pro, high and low. Here are just a few adventures to get stoked about.

Hike Roan Mountain

Hiking up Roan Mountain from the Carvers Gap parking lot is like the fine wine of hiking trails. The sunsets, sunrises, and countless miles up and down the balds only get better with age each time you trek them. Roan Mountain is one of the many gems of the area and will certainly take your breath away each visit.

The views get more stellar the further you climb. Hike to the Grassy Ridge summit for spectacular vistas in every direction. It’s nearly 5 miles round-trip and makes a great sunrise to sunset hike if you are in need of some nature therapy for a full or half day. Pack a picnic and hang out up top or follow the Appalachian Trail all the way to Hump Mountain.

Bike Tannery Knobs

Tannery Knobs is Johnson City’s newest mountain bike park located minutes from downtown! The park was built with all skill levels in mind, starting with the youngsters playing on the pump track to the thrill-seeker building confidence on jumps. Trail runners and hikers are also welcomed to use the park, making this a great visit for anyone down to the local picnicker. Take in these views from the bench up top!

Kayak Watauga Lake

Located just east of Elizabethton is the perfect lake playground for all water activities! Kayak to Goose Island, fish the hidden coves, take out the sailboat, or rent a pontoon for the day. The water is fresh and rejuvenating making for a relaxing paddle in the fresh mountain air.

Explore Lamar Alexander Rocky Fork State Park

Hike Whitehouse Knob

The climb to the summit is well worth the 0.7 miles each way. Immerse yourself in lush mountaintop views at 3,440 feet. The trailhead starts at the corner of the main parking lot, and switchbacks lead you straight up the mountain making for a speedy descent on the way down.

Fish Rocky Fork Creek

The native brook and rainbow trout at this Tennessee State Park are magnificent. Lurking in the open fishing holes, you will see them in all their beauty swimming along the banks of Rocky Fork. Some of the streams here are recognized in Tennessee’s top three brook trout fisheries.

Before You Go

Stay hydrated when hiking in our region, and please practice Leave No Trace ethics.

Written by Alicia M. Bynum
Travel Writer | Photographer