Montgomery Bell Trail is a 10.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Burns, TN that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
Park Office/Visitor Center: 615-797-9052 1020 Jackson Hill Road Burns, TN 37029
This is my favorite day hike! I did the MB 10.5 mile trail in 5 hours which includes about a 20 minute stop for lunch at the Woodland shelter. The trail is a bit harder than moderate. Very rocky with lots of roots. Almost felt like hiking a mountain bike trail. Several crossings over shallow streams so take extra dry socks in case your boots/shoes are not water resistant.
My dog and I love this place. Lots of shorter trails if you are not up to the 10 miles. Beautiful scenery and lots of natural water sources. Hall springs is a favorite!
fairly difficult trail, but beautiful!
Great hike but the whole trail is not for the faint hearted. There are several shorter trails though.
Actually, I only did the south part of the loop and returned to the trailhead following Creech Hollow Trail. Moderate hike with constant but not hard inclines. It was beautiful and we encountered only a few people.
wonderful, just remember to watch out for snakes when walking through water.
Nice day hike with some beautiful lake views. Easy-moderate with a few moderate climbs. Enjoyable day hike. With the shelters, this could easily serve as a training shakedown hike for potential longer trips.
It was a great long hike!
Had a great time on this hike. The challenge is in the length. Most of the trail is fairly easy with some healthy inclines sprinkled throughout. Had a little trouble finding the trail due to the fact it's just labeled Montgomery Bell on signs instead of Montgomery Bell Southwest Trail, but it's easy enough to find. Not much in the way of stunning overlooks, but lots of changing vegetation and trees throughout. Hiking this was a pleasure and I will definitely hike it again, and backpack at one of the tree shelters there.
I'm a Trail Runner from Nashville. About once a month I make the drive out to Montgomery Bell, as this is my favorite running trail in middle Tennessee. Moderate hills, all singletrack, a lot of water features (lakes and creeks), and the trail is well drained. Even during or after a heavy rain, there aren't many muddy spots. The Southwest Loop is my favorite, and I go counterclockwise around the loop, and then take the orange blazed Creech Hollow Trail back toward the ranger station and campground.
I usually park at the picnic pavilion, run through the campground, across the bridge, and take the wildcat trail to the Ore Pit LoopTrail, and then onto the MB trail. Then the Creech Hollow Trail back to my truck. I often also take a 1 mile out and back side track down the spillway trail. It is on the edge of a nice creek, But it is technical with roots and rocks. Including that side track, my route is about 9 miles, 1100 feet of climbing
I don't find the NorthEast Loop quite as interesting, with fewer water features
The trails here are never crowded. Once a year the Tennessee State Park system runs a trail race on this loop. See their website.
We did the entire "White Trail" that includes the North and Southwest M Bell Trail. It came out to be around 9+ miles. Started at the North end just behind the old entrance building, ended at the Visitors centre just down the street. The entire trail was well enough marked that we had no trouble finding our way even with the ground completely covered in leaves. The North section had a few nice creek crossing but little other to add to the beautiful hardwood forest. We stopped at Cheech Hollow Lake for a snack and a sit. Deciding to complete the trail rather than cut to the car on the "Orange Trail" we doubled back. The Southern section had a lot more diversity along with a few bridge crossings.
All in all, I truly enjoyed completing the entire trail at once and feel doing it "backwards" worked best for us.
Great trail for a day hike. Montgomery Bell is just one of gems we have in our state park system. One warning, there lots of leaves of three plants with parts having narrow trails so proceed cautiously.
Great day hike trail or over night trip. Also a great trail to train younger hikers or people new to backpacking. The lake seen while walking the trail offers some additional fishing possibilities to increase the activities which can be done during an overnight packing trip. You can view my complete video review at the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eu4o3W4R0sw&list=UUrbCt-DBMAvESOy14rdqzlQ
The full Montgomery Bell trail is 10.5 miles. 3 shelters along the trail for overnight stays. I did this as a day hike with moderate difficulty. The few times I've been on the MB trail its been pretty low traffic and only run into a few other hikers. Be sure to grab a trail map, or other method of finding your way because blazes are sometimes difficult to find. Will definitely come back and do the trail again and make it an overnight trip.