T and I visited Panther Creek State Park this past week. It was a gorgeous hike. We saw three deer before we even had a chance to park. When we set to the trails we found them clean and well marked. When we reached the overlook we fell in love with the scenery. When we walked along the lake it was clear, full of life, and exceedingly peaceful. We had an amazing day. So let’s break it down into five good reasons for you to visit Panther Creek State Park too, in case you haven’t been convinced just yet.
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Panther Creek State Parks Hiking Trails
Panther Creek State Park offers over 17 different hiking trails totaling thirty miles of trails ranging from easy to difficult. There are also 15 miles of biking trails. The park itself covers 1444 acres.
Here is a list of all of Panther Creek State Parks hiking trails and details on each.
Point Lookout and the views of Cherokee Lake and The Cumberland Mountains
So if I am being honest, this view is what made me drive the two hours to the park. I wanted to go and see the trails and walk through the forest and all, but this view right here was the main reason for this adventure. These captures are actually from the scenic overlook before you get to Point Lookout. Point Lookout sits at 1,460 feet above sea level.
According to TVA, the Cherokee Reservoir is named for the tribe of Native Americans who once inhabited the area. The Great Indian Warpath, once followed by Daniel Boone, crossed the basin now filled by the reservoir.
The lake contains 28,780 acres of water and offers 400 miles of shoreline. But, it’s the fishing that draws a lot of visitors.
Cherokee Lake provides year-round catches of bass, crappie, bluegill, catfish, rockfish, and bream. It is common to catch rockfish up to 20 pounds. Which can make for a really fun day at the lake!
We discovered something very cool in the lake but we had no idea what it was. What would you guess?
I had to email a video to our friend Connie Deaton who is Director of Nature Programs with Johnson City Parks and Recs. She’s amazing. And she knew exactly what these were. Bryozoans! They are considered a very good sign of healthy water and are fairly rare. For homeschoolers like us, discoveries of things like Bryozoans feel like hitting the jackpot. We were completely fascinated.
The Activities at Panther Creek State Creek Park
In a non-Covid world, I release a monthly series called Out and About. In it, I encourage families to get out and see what the community has to offer by listing my favorite educational and/or family-friendly outings. It was through the writing of these posts that I first discovered Panther Creek State Park. They offer so much fun including morning and sunset canoe rides, dive-in movies at their swimming pool, archery, tomahawk tosses, ranger-led hikes, birds of prey classes, fishing, camping, horseback riding trails, birding (over 125 species), and more. Here’s a list of some of the top draws.
- Horse Trails
- Biking Trails
- Disc Golf (18 holes)
- Picnic Pavillions and Playgrounds
- Recreational and Education Programs Year-Round
Panther Creek offers 50 campsites with water and electrical hookups, grills, picnic tables, and fire rings. There are two bathhouses with hot showers and restrooms. A laundromat is open year-round. You can purchase firewood, ice, and other basic supplies at the Camp Store. Click here for more information.
Details About Panther Creek State Park
Panther Creek State Park Address and Phone #
2010 Panther Creek Park Road
Morristown, TN 37814
Panther Creek State Park on Social Media
Here are some other amazing day trip destinations near the Tri-Cities!
- Roan Mountain Hike From Carver’s Gap
- Hike Laurel Fork Falls in Hampton Tennessee
- Blowing Rock and Linville Falls Adventure
- Best Family Hiking Trip In East Tennessee
- Visit Cade’s Cove In The Great Smoky Mountains
Are you planning a trip to Panther Creek State Park? If so, or if you have already been, please share in the comments section below. We love to hear from you!
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