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Day Hiking

There are over 150 miles of hiking trails on public land within a 15 minute drive of downtown Chattanooga. Our parks, greenways, and natural areas hold close to 100 miles more.

Photo courtesy of Chattanooga Arboretum and Nature Center

Opportunities for day hikers of all levels, including those who want ADA accessibility, can be reached by car, bicycle or public transit.

Go a little further out of town and some of the nation’s most spectacular trails meander over the Cumberland Plateau to the north and south, and the Appalachian Mountains to the east.

Photo by Jeffrey Hunter

Taking a walk in the woods is the easiest, least expensive way for anyone to enjoy the outdoors. All you need to get started are a sturdy pair of walking shoes.

A Few Quick Tips for Day Hikers

  • Hike with a buddy or group
  • Learn how to use a trail map and a compass
  • Let someone know your iteinerary
  • Wear sturdy boots or trail shoes with synthetic or wool socks
  • A hiking stick and help you keep your balance on uneven trails beds
  • Carry a small fanny pack or backpack with a few essentials:
    • Minimum 1 quart water
    • Snacks
    • Sun and rain protection
    • Insulating layers
    • Lighter and/or matches
    • Compass
    • Cell phone
    • First aid kit
    • Emergency whistle
    • Emergency blanket or shelter

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