Added by Christian Murillo
Hiking the Hogskin loop to Stripmine Falls offers a perfect opportunity to explore a unique waterfall and to cool off in the beautiful Chickamauga Creek.
Stripmine Falls is not the biggest waterfall in the area, but it is both beautiful and accessible with just a short and easy out-and-back (or loop) hike. The additional attraction of cool swimming pools along Chickamauga creek make this an ideal destination for a day full of relaxation and adventure.
The trailhead is located just 25 minutes north of Chattanooga, nearest to the township of Soddy Daisy. From Chattanooga, drive on 27 N until you get off on Dayton Pike N and then turn left onto Montlake Rd. The parking area is on your left hand side and can be seen from the North Chickamauga Creek/Cumberland Trail sign.
From the parking area, head north to find the trailhead. The hike to Stripmine falls should be done staying straight at the loop fork, in order to see the waterfall in the first part of the hike. This direction will take you up a gentle incline first until you reach the waterfall. Once you get to the base of the waterfall, you will want to do a bit of mild bouldering to get up to the top of the waterfall which is really more like a wide and soft trickle of water. This is one of the most peaceful and relaxing views, albeit not as impressive as other waterfalls in the area. After you reach the falls you can turn around and make your first right to descend the steps on the Lower Hogskin Loop trail. This section of the trail will descend you to the banks of the North Chickamauga Creek, where you will find six creek access points. Although parts of the creek have strong currents, there are many calm pools to relax in. You can follow the trail passing along the creek access points to return to the parking area.
This hike is a section of the longer Cumberland trail and can be extended about another three miles to the Boston Branch and Rogers Creek Overlook if you keep on the trail NW from Stripmine Falls. This longer hike is an out-and-back hike. Whether you decide to take the longer trail or not, you can still cool of by taking a dip in the refreshing North Chickamauga Creek by returning on the Lower Hogskin Loop Trail.
If you go early in the day during the week, you might very well find yourself hiking and swimming by yourself. However, the trail and creek gets fairly crowded on weekday afternoons and very crowded on weekends. Although it might not seem like there are that many people on the trail, parking is limited.
- Hiking Boots
- Water Bottle
- Swim Suit
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