nature trips



dogs on leash



kid friendly


trail running

dog friendly


wild flowers

Encompassing 125,000 acres of the Cumberland Plateau, Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area protects the free-flowing Big South Fork of the Cumberland River and its tributaries. The area boasts miles of scenic gorges and sandstone bluffs, is rich with natural and historic features and has been developed to provide visitors with a wide range of outdoor recreational activities.

Beautiful! Ended up making a wrong turn and ended up at the parking lot/overlook area doing this trail counterclockwise..not quite sure what we did wrong but ended up doing a shorter loop. We were the only ones out there on NYE and it was great! Definitely be careful due to ice in some spots, we brought our dogs out and it was difficult getting them up the stairs that lead to the lookout.

Referring to the larger loop hike (about 5 miles), this was a great trail and hike. Well maintained and the arches are great. But even more, the bluffs and rock formations all along the latter portion of the loop were breathtaking. The loop goes last the northern arch, descends down to a beautiful creek, passes the lodge, then slowly ascends to the southern arch. A lot to see along the way on this moderately difficult trail. Well worth it;

Easy trail but also gorgeous views along the western ridge. Very cool place to see the canyon, the forest and numerous views of the river far below while also logging some hiking miles.

Winter wonderland! Amazing day to be out!

Absolutely beautiful trail literally in my backyard!!

Love this trail, so much to see. It is hard, but rewarding and takes about 5 hours.

Pretty good Family friendly trail. The hill climb may challenge the youngest hikers (pre-teen) but is not too bad overall. Lots of rapids to view and a couple waterfall areas if recently rained. Great camping.

Definitely the nicest hike in big south fork, but yes it is challenging. Prepare to see some of the best scenery, take it slow and plan a whole day (6hrs). You will be exhausted once done, but it is well worth it. Not recommended for young kids.

one of my favorite hikes ever!!

Easy to moderate hike, that parallels the river for the majority of the hike. Not too much of an incline and plenty of spots to stop and take in the scene of the rushing water. The waterfall isn’t anything major and you could almost pass it up when there hasn’t been a lot of rain but was still a lovely addition to this soothing trek.


Beautiful easy hike... some amazing campsites right along the river...

This is a beautiful hike! Especially with the leaves turning their colors. Between taking pictures, taking in all the scenery and the hike itself.... oh, and a break for lunch, it took 6hrs. Honey Creek was a wonderful hike!!

My absolute favorite place to go, easy hike as well!

Amazing and fun trail...

Great little hike. Good vistas from the top of the arches. The loop trail has some pretty amazing trees as well.

Hiked it today. Very strenuous 5.6 mile hike... a lot of up and down. AMAZING scenery and rock formations. Water was kind of dried up, but I can see how the waterfalls are awesome in the spring and summer.

Possibly the best dayhike in Big South Fork, which is saying something in an area filled with good dayhikes. Arches are fantastic; try standing at the south end of either arch to get the best lighting for a pic. Passes numerous large rock shelters en route to Jake's Place (a pile of rocks, all that remains of a house) and Charit Creek Lodge. Soda and snacks may be for sale at Charit Creek Lodge, which also offers overnight lodging. Some climbing is required, but trail is mostly well-graded with good switchbacks.

Also, be aware that there are 2 loops starting at this trailhead that are sometimes called the Twin Arches Loop. A short 1.2 mile loop only goes over and around Twin Arches, while a longer 4.7 mile loop also takes you to Jake's Place and Charit Creek Lodge. This page is supposed to be about the longer loop, but some of the user reviews seem to be about the shorter one. The longer loop is the better hike if you have the time, conditioning, and energy, but of course the shorter loop is a better choice if you only want to see the arches.

great trail. absolutely go counter clockwise.
cross the road and down 20-30 yards is the start for this direction not the trail behind the sign as this will be the end of the loop. be aware at trail intersections for trail markers.

Good hike for kids.

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