Hiking and Swimming at Cummins Falls State Park

Discover the adventure of hiking steep trails, hopping boulders, and wading through rivers to reach Tennessee's eighth-largest waterfall at Cummins Falls State Park.

Last updated: May 2024

    Free park access, $6 permit fee for entering the gorge.


    More than 500 Miles from you


    State Gem: Exceptional experiences within your state that are bucket list-worthy
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  1. Start at the Visitor Center: Arrive early to secure parking, collect your permit, and plan your route.
  2. Choose Your Route: Decide between the shorter (2-mile) and longer (3-mile) trails to reach the base of Cummins Falls.
  3. Take the Trail: Follow the trail down into the gorge. Be prepared for steep descents, slippery boulders, and water crossings.
  4. Reach the Falls: Follow the river trail, navigating obstacles and crossing the river to reach the 75-foot waterfall.
  5. Enjoy Swimming: With a permit, you can swim in the natural swimming hole at the base of the falls.
  6. Return to the Trailhead: Start your return journey from the base by 5:00 PM in-season to exit by park closing time.



390 Cummins Falls Ln, Cookeville, TN 38501

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Packing List

  • Dry bag
  • Small towel
  • Water and snacks
  • Sturdy water shoes with traction
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Swimsuit
  • Waterproof camera
  • Life jacket (recommended, especially for kids)

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