Shauna and I took a trip to Fall Creek Falls in Tennessee this week since it was my spring break and the weather has been unbelievably nice. Fall Creek Falls State Resort Park is near the center of TN, over an hour from Nashville. As the name implies the big attraction is Fall Creek Falls, which is the biggest waterfall East of the Rocky Mountains, along with few other waterfalls which are very big. There’s something for everyone at Falls Creek, hiking, swimming, fishing, camping, biking, golf and a great Inn and restaurant where we stayed.
We had spent a few days here a couple of years ago and on the drive I kept saying how great it would be to road bike some of the roads around the park. The standout geographical features of the area are called gulfs, deep canyons between two hills. In Southern Illinois we call them hollows, but they are about half the size of the gulfs in Tennessee. Inside the park you’ll find a few miles of paved trails that are nice but not for serious riding, there is also about 15 miles of mountain bike trails. This year I took my road bike and with the help of Strava picked out a road to ride with a few categorized climbs.
The climbs in question were on Route 30 and featured about a couple of climbs around 2 to 3 miles in length with average grades of around 5%. Not exactly Colorado but some serious climbing especially for Illinoisan. I’ve been meaning to write an entire post about how much I love compact gearing but keep forgetting so I’ll just say that again compact gearing made these climbs easy. Well not exactly easy, but manageable.
Besides riding we had a lot of fun walking to the waterfalls and around the inn on the lake. Something that you’ll experience at Fall Creek Falls is the suspension bridge. There are two long bridges strung up by cable and covered in wooden planks. Walking across them feels like walking on a trampoline and plays havoc with your equilibrium when you return to hard ground.
If you’re ever driving through Tennessee and want a great place to spend some time away from crowds and over comercialized tourist traps then you should definitly head to Fall Creek Falls.