John C. Clayborn Millennium Trail and Merritt Ridge Trail Loop

HARD 69 reviews
#1 of 4 trails in

John C. Clayborn Millennium Trail and Merritt Ridge Trail Loop is a 7.5 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Silver Point, Tennessee that features a lake and is rated as difficult. 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.

7.5 miles
1417 feet

dogs on leash




nature trips

trail running





wild flowers


To access the Merritt Ridge Loop, head to the trailhead for the Jack Clayborn Millennium Loop. Hike in until you reach the sign (about a mile). The entire hike totals about 7.8 miles.

22 days ago

One of my favorites, although you may encounter a lot of spiders

1 month ago

Very pretty trail with some lake views in brief sections. We hiked this trail in early September and it was poorly maintained on the loop. At times we lost the trail or had to climb through thick brush and over fallen logs that hadn't been cleared. Also, spider phobics beware- we carried sticks in front of our face during the loop section after getting hit in the face with countless spiderwebs. Overall an adventurous hike but maybe better during the spring and summer months when there is more activity and trail maintenance.

3 months ago

Tough 8 miles with some good coaster-age. 4 stars for lack of real views.

4 months ago

Went in August. Spiderwebs everywhere. Only made it .7 in before I decided against purchasing the whole silk shirt. Getting 3 star for being average for TN from what I was able to see before I backed out. Will re-visit review in winter, and reassess.

trail running
6 months ago

Great run; highly recommended. Veritable roller coaster. Definitely "lightly trafficked" with somewhat overgrown trails in parts, but they lead to amazing ridgetop lines and lake overlooks.

6 months ago

An excellent all-around hike. Great terrain variety, almost everything you can imagine on one hike except waterfalls. (The midpoint of the Merritt Ridge loop drops you to a surprisingly remote spot on the lake.)

7 months ago

can get strenuous going up two large hills besides that pretty nice

8 months ago

Really enjoyed the trail. Sparsely populated enough to let the dog run. Lots of challenging climbs but well maintained trails. No breathtaking views, but a couple nice places along the way to stop for a lunch break. Probably a little tough for little kids, but a fun workout otherwise.

8 months ago

Nice trail, not as many views as I would have liked. Lots of spiderwebs

8 months ago

Doing the whole trail including Merritt Ridge is well worth it. The views of the lake are gorgeous, with places to access the lake, great picnic spots on large rocks along lakeshore. Plenty of wildflowers. Great workout.

9 months ago

The Millienium loop is great for the difficulty. It would be a fun trail to take young people. The old homestead area is interesting. I went in early March and the valley had a lot of green - surprisingly. The connector trail is a good climb. The views from the top are great and the trail is nice. You walk along the ridge of a hill. The Merrit Ridge Loop was up and down and up and down and I don't think it is worth the difficulty. The views weren't great and there wasn't very much interesting to see or do. It is fine to do once, but I will not be re-doing this portion of the loop. 2 Stars for Merrit Ridge Loop. 4 Stars for Millenium+Connector.

My AllTrails app read 8.1 miles.

10 months ago

Great beautiful place! Fishing, fly fishing, camping, trails, wildlife, bird watching, crystal clear water, and beautiful view! Coming back soon!

11 months ago

Very challenging if you take all of the loops as there are alot of elevation changes. Was snow on the ground so when you went off trail was tricky. Some nice elevated views and probably not seen when foilage is full. However would be a good hike in summer if you wanted to get in the lake. Great job by the parks dept for clearing the roads after the very recent snowfall.

Monday, November 07, 2016

Very challenging but rewarding trail. Had the entire trail to myself.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

The trail is a good workout and offers plenty of opportunities for wildlife to be spotted. The views in the summer aren't that spectacular mostly because the trees block the view. However, I can definitely see how there would be awesome views so I will be making a return visit come this fall/early winter.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Amazing trail, just don't underestimate it. Our plan was to come out and swim all afternoon, but that turned into just an hour of swimming due to running out of daylight. This place really is a hidden gem, and the only downside to that is parts of the trail are severely overgrown and ticks are EVERWHERE, so check yourself routinely. All else aside, definitely check this place out. I'll be coming back for more hiking and swimming during the summer as well as winter hiking for the amazing views. There are also some forest giants here you'll want to see.

Sunday, March 06, 2016

Amazing views - they have definitely improved on marking the trails. BUT, with that being said, bring a map! My fiance and I went to go hike a couple miles and ended up hiking 10. The view was totally worth it.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Observation tower gives a good view of the Center hill dam. There is also a good 2 mile trail that leaves and comes back to the visitor center. We even walked out off trail on a couple of islands in the park.

Monday, February 01, 2016

Only hiked the Millennium Loop Trail and it was a great hike. Plan to go back soon to complete the ridge loop as well. Definitely enjoyed the warm yet windy January day. There were quite a few fellow hikers on this trail today.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

hiked in the day after 8 inch snowfall this January. All virgin snow and a access parking lot that was plowed. Great job maintenance department! Thanks! What a great winter hike. I had the trail to myself as no one else ventured out on this day due to the road conditions. Views of the lake are gorgeous. Spring maintenance will be needed as several trees have fallen onto the trail. Merritt Ridge Trail after a snowfall will challenge you but its worth it!

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