Conservation Partners Add 1,058 Acres Near Fiery Gizzard Trail To Tennessee’s South Cumberland State Park

The Conservation Fund and The Land Trust for Tennessee, in partnership with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) and the Open Space Institute (OSI), announced the addition of 1,058 acres to South Cumberland State Park in Marion County. The acquisition connects more than 7,000 acres of protected public and private land, conserves forestland and cove habitat from future development, and protects scenic views from the Fiery Gizzard trail.

The newly acquired land is adjacent to the Fiery Gizzard trail, which has been ranked as one of the top 25 backpacking trails in the United States by Backpacker Magazine. Approximately 600,000 visitors enjoy South Cumberland State Park annually, with many attracted to the 12-mile Fiery Gizzard Trail. However many large sections of the trail and surrounding bluffs remain in private ownership. TDEC plans to relocate a nearby portion of the trail that is on private land to the newly acquired land.

The acquisition also builds upon the State’s recent efforts to conserve land in the region. In March 2017, South Cumberland State Park celebrated the dedication of Denny Cove, a 685-acre climbing destination just a quarter mile from the newly acquired 1,058 acres. In 2010, The Conservation Fund, The Land Trust for Tennessee and the State of Tennessee partnered to purchase 6,182 acres on the Fiery Gizzard from a private timber company. At that time, 2,900 acres went into public ownership as part of South Cumberland State Park, and 3,282 went into private ownership with a conservation easement held by The Land Trust for Tennessee.

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