Cumberland Trail: Snow Falls Trail

MODERATE 59 reviews

Cumberland Trail: Snow Falls Trail is a 10 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Dayton, Tennessee that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from February until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 10.0 miles Elevation Gain: 1,496 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly




nature trips






wild flowers






Quiet falls awaits you with great overlook views to be enjoyed on this trail. Beautiful scenery. Great place for a family hike. Your hike begins along the Richland Creek that provided water and mining for the town of Dayton for many years. This area was once logged by Bowater Paper and then turned over to provide excellent trails for the pocket wilderness and Cumberland Trail. The first 1.5 miles is shared by Snow Falls & Laurel Falls; at this point turn left (NW) to Snow Falls. You will hike 3/4 mile then you will walk around a huge boulder and then cross 3 50' bridges to cross over Richland Creek. The next 2 miles you will ascend over 500' by a series of switchbacks that lead to the upper rim to Buzzard Point. Once you are on top follow an old log road to the south to Buzzard Point for lunch with a view! Backtrack to connect to the Snow Falls trail that crosses this log road you're on. You will descend to creek level of which you will have to wade or cross depending on water level. Once you are across the creek follow white blaze. Backtrack to upper rim for the Dunn Overlook for great views. Open from 8 am to 7 pm. The gate at the entrance to Pocket Wilderness Road is closed at 7 pm.

4 months ago

The overlook at Buzzard's Point offers one of the best west-to-east views of the Tennessee Valley. On a clear day, you can see the Tennessee River, the Hiwassee River, and the Unicoi Mountains which are roughly 60 miles eastwards.

5 months ago

We made it to the top of the ridge and had to turn around due to daylight the last time we tried this. It was also raining and the rocks and the bridge were SO slick. There was no one on the trail even though it was a weekend. This time, March 2, it was a beautiful sunny weekend day and we could barely find a spot to park! Lots of people set up at the large group site after the trail split. We did intervals of hiking/running on the way up and the doggo loved exploring the river and woods. Solid climb up to the ridge. There's a fire ring and small primitive campsite at the edge of the ridge where the trail loops around. There's a great vista if you dont turn and go past the firering- you can also get here by following the powerline clearing right before. The water crossing was really flowing and slick. Water was much too cold for my preference but the fiancé and doggy went across and took pics for me. Great hike!

9 months ago

It's a real slog up to Buzzards Point. That's the only down fall. Is that HARD slog up that ridge. Other wise, Buzzards Point has amazing views, the falls are amazing, and well worth the hard slog. We logged 18.5 miles with the hike back to the larger falls. This is not for the faint of heart.

Sunday, August 05, 2018

So far my favorite hiking trail! So many cool and beautiful landscapes to the falls. Worth the hike and the drive there. I’ll go again.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Well worth it, regardless of the weather. I had almost no landscape view, but was still amazed with how amazing the overlook rocks, river and waterfalls were in the fog.

Sunday, April 01, 2018

Most beautiful hike ever! Not very well marked so we got off trail a little but the scenery was beyond worth it!!! My favorite place to go!

Saturday, January 20, 2018

beautiful and the kids loved it!

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Long, moderate to strenuous hike. This was actually to Buzzard Point via the Snow Falls Trail. When you get up to the top where you walk between the two huge rocks, take a left and it takes you to Buzzard Point. Stunning views!

Monday, November 06, 2017

It was so beautiful. TONS of waterfalls and an abandoned mine shaft. I definitely explored that. So beautiful and I really liked it. Only problem was that the 50 foot bridge was gone due to a tree, so I had to climb a tree to get to the other side of the trail. Which means going over a river that's meant for white water rafting. BUT I still give it a 8/10, because it was so beautiful and the abandoned mine shaft.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Love this so beautiful and trails are perfect as well. Beautiful waterfalls.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Loved this hike! Took a rookie backpacker to break in and it was a perfect first timer! My only complaint is that the 50' metal bridge that crosses Laurle Creek all the guides talk about is no longer there and we were very confused with no bridge and no blazes visible on the other side. One guide suggested exploring the first section (mining area) on the way in so you are not too tired to explore on the way out. We did it on the way in AND the way out and still felt like we could have explored more so be sure to not pass right by this wonderful area. I uploaded some images we took. April is perfect with cool nights, not so hot days, wild flowers everywhere, falls with good amounts of water, enough greenery to add to the beauty but not enough to hinder views of the falls, and dogwoods in full bloom. The trail was easy to follow most of the time but with so many spur trails, don't let down your guard and neglect watching for white blazes. Rock scrambles can get tricky but so worth it!

Monday, April 03, 2017

The trail is poorly marked in some areas and we lost it at a couple points. The waterfall isn't very rewarding after a long hike, especially after experiencing the majesty of Laurel Falls.

Monday, April 03, 2017

One of my favorite trails

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Great hike! Be prepared to cross the river to get to the falls!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Really nice but dry from drought. Will go again in spring.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Sunday, October 09, 2016

Loved it. Very beautiful. Hiked through the dry bed more than anything. The path is on a reclaimed railroad for the coal mines. Lots of old artifacts, bridges, and mines.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Loved it!

Saturday, May 21, 2016

This place is great. It's more of a moderate trail than easy. Still great hike. The creek was low due to lack of rain, so the falls where unimpressive. But the area is beautiful in its own right. Definitely recommend.

Monday, May 16, 2016

I got to the area just after sun up with the intention of hiking to both falls and all of the overlooks before sundown, which I accomplished in a little less than 6 1/2 hours. The trail is marked moderate which I would have to say is accurate, the first 1.5 mile stretch running along the creek is easy, flat and peaceful, once past the old broken bridge things start going up toward laurel falls, and there are a series of ever increasing switchbacks to navigate. Laurel falls was a trickle when I went, but it was still a beautiful sight, the real gem is the overlook above it. The snow falls trail is much longer, and has its own set of switchbacks to navigate, once on top of the ridge you run into a dirt road which can be walked in either direction, one to the overlook one to the falls, I saw only 5 other people on the fall trails while I was out on Sunday (sunny, high of 70, with a breeze) so it was quite peaceful. On the hike out I saw about 20 people with kids in the creek swimming. I am 24, in decent shape, and I had no problem hiking the entire area in a day's time, I also carried a backpack and DSLR camera the entire time. The best hike I have been on in TN so far.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Have camped and hiked here several times, and it remains one of my favorite spots in TN.

Monday, April 11, 2016

I have been hiking for 30 years and this is probably the best easy short hike I have ever been on. We hiked in and camped just short of snow falls. After setting up camp we hiked up to Laurel falls and played on the abundant boulders. My son is 11 and he absolutely loved it. this should not be marked moderate. Anyone at any age should be able to do this.

Monday, April 04, 2016

This place is beautiful.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Great for overnight backpacking trip.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

The Laurel Falls Trail was one of the most beautifully scenic trails I have had a chance to hike so far. It is mostly easy to moderate in difficulty with a couple of more strenuous areas near the end. The terrain starts out fairly level then gradually inclines up to the falls. At the trail head there is a beautiful mountain creek winding along side the trail for quite a way. There are even some places to stop and rest and plenty of photo opportunities. Eventually the trail veers off in another direction for a while and then winds its way back around meeting up with the creek again closer to the falls. There are also a lot of beautiful rock formations along the way and a couple of small water falls on cliff sides and cascading over the rocks. I would recommend going in the spring. The Spring rains and snow melting make the creek and the water fall much fuller and more beautiful. But it is still pretty at other times as well. The only issue we encountered the last two times we were there was the bridge that allows you to cross over the creek to the remainder of the trail. Apparently a storm had caused a tree to fall on the bridge severely damaging it on one end making it unsafe to pass. There is a note posted about it at the entrance of the trail head. The first time we scrambled across the creek using the protruding rocks as stepping stones and our trek poles to steady us but the second time the water was so high and swift we were unable to do that. We had to risk crossing the bridge. We made it okay but it was a little scary. Otherwise it was a great hike and seeing the falls made it well worth the trip. They are absolutely beautiful. Definitely recommend going. Its a great day hike but if you're interested in camping there are rustic camping areas along the way and near the top of the falls.

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Love the trail, my son and I have been back twice and will keep going back. It's just that good.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

I loved the laural falls trail, but the snow falls trail was very confusing. The bridge is really cool on the trail, the hike up the mountain isn't to bad and it leads to a cave and rock formations. I never actually found the falls, it lead out to a huge overlook which was cool but the bryer bushes over grew the ground where the paint marks were so we had to turn around after losing the trail. Bring a lot of water!!! Because my Boxer overheated and we had to stop for her to drink and I had to cover her in water.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Laurel Falls is the most beautiful falls on this trail. It is also the closest to the trail head. Snow falls is smaller and is the tougher of the two trails. Don't forget the overlooks though. The views are worth the extra miles.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

beautiful fantastic hike by the river up to the laurel waterfall and then on up to the overlook. don't follow directions given by Alltrails. They will get you lost.

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