Cummins Falls is one of my recent outdoor day trips. It is a short drive away from Nashville so you can easily make a day out of it. Tennessee has its share of beautiful state parks throughout the state which can be hard to choose from. Cummins Falls was an easy choice thanks to its proximity and beauty I had to witness for myself.
I enjoyed the simplicity of it Cummins Falls because it allowed me to absorb the natural beauty in Tennessee while also getting a workout simultaneously. Take advantage of all the outdoor activities you can while the weather permits. It is still gorgeous outside considering the heat and humidity have calmed down quite a bit.
What to Expect
The hike to Cummins Falls is a moderate hike that can be done in less than 60 minutes each way. There are some areas that can be tricker than others but I would not recommend taking small children or elderly adults with you. You will encounter rugged terrain that is not appropriate for small children or adults carrying them. Some parts of the hike will require you have free hands to manage and if you are holding a baby or a small child it can be very dangerous.
Don’t expose your family to a situation that could be avoided. It is better to avoid an accident by being extra careful and limit the hike to people that can manage to hike steep inclines. While it is a short hike if you run into an emergency it will take a while for the appropriate authorities to come and help. While we very visiting we came across a rescue scene for an older woman that had fallen and broken her arm.
What to Bring
Water shoes are a must for the majority of the terrain once you reach the water. Feel free to bring a comfy pair of sneakers for the majority of the hike so your feet don’t suffer the consequences of all the uneven terrain. Seriously leave your favorite sneakers in the car or at home if don’t want them ruined. Be smart and don’t hike the trail in your flip flops. After all you will have to hike over steep and rugged terrain to reach the swimming hole at Cummins Falls. Granted they are not the most flattering shoe but they serve a purpose. You can get a similar pair here.
A small backpack is a must to carry some snacks, water, sunblock and any other item you want to take with you. Also you can easily throw in your sneakers if you prefer to hike in sneakers. This will allow you to transport what you need while keeping your hands clear to navigate while you hike. Do not carry anything in your hand while hiking the trail.
Towel and Clothes
Goes without saying but wear a swimsuit under your clothes so you can enjoy the swimming hole. Bring a towel and an extra set of clean and dry clothes to change into before leaving. I leave these in the car so everything is nice and dry. Cummins Falls State Park has bathrooms where you can easily change without having to resort to doing so in your car. The park tends to have a steady flow of people coming and going so you don’t want to risk showing off more than you would like.
Cummins Falls is a beautiful waterfall and state park but we must all do our part to keep it pristine. Make sure you take all your trash with you so others can enjoy its beauty too. This will help avoid contamination to the wildlife animals and the area as well as leaving unsightly views for others.
The hike there is shaded but once you reach the water you will be exposed to the sun during your journey to the bottom of the waterfall. Make sure you apply sunblock before starting your hike so you can get that out of the way. Also reapply while at the Falls since people tend to burn quicker while in the water. This will help ensure a more comfortable day trip and avoid burning in unflattering ways.
As with any trip, scope out the weather when planning your trip and before heading out. Make sure there are no heavy rain storms because this can expose you to unnecessary danger. You can also check with the park beforehand just to understand if any other conditions warrant you avoid going.
Easy directions from I-40
Take Exit 280 to TN-56 towards Gainsboro for 7.7 miles
Turn Right on TN-290 for about almost 1 mile
Turn Left onto Cummins Mill Road and go about 2.1 miles
Turn Left onto Blackburn Fork Road and go about 0.2 miles
The entrance to Cummins Falls is located at 1225 Cummins Falls Rd. Once you reach the little General Store on your right hand side you know you have arrived. Make a quick left so you can park your car.
Cummins Falls is the perfect daytrip to enjoy this Labor Day weekend. Make the most of the last real summer of the year before officially reincorporating back into the hustle and grind of life. I loved the beauty of the waterfall and the adventurous hike to get to the swimming hole. Pictures are not able to convey the beauty so go check it out when you can.
Join me on my journey!