Cloudland Canyon State Park
Guide

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Introduction

Cloudland Canyon State Park is an alluring and magnificent park in Rising Fawn, Georgia. Spanning across 3,538 acres in the southern part of Dade County, Cloudland Canyon State Park is situated on the western edge of Lookout Mountain. The park showcases many varieties of landscapes that the earth has to offer, including giant caves, thick forests, sandstone cliffs, vast canyons, cascading creeks, and striking wildlife diversity.
The park provides plenty of options for recreation, including hiking, horseback riding, and mountain biking on the miles of long scenic trails. You can also enjoy disc golfing on the 18-hole course, exploring giant caves, angling, picnicking, and much more. The park is usually bustling with various events throughout the year like marathons, First-Day Hikes, and Adventure Weekends.
The park is also abounding with exciting camping opportunities featuring cottages, yurts, primitive camping sites, and lodges. RV campers are also well taken care of as the park offers 72 sites that are perfect for those wanting a little luxury since they feature electric and water hookups. The ideal seasons to visit the park are summer, spring, and fall, but the park is open for nature lovers and RV campers throughout the year, including the snowy winters, too. Peak season at Cloudland Canyon State Park runs from April until the end of October.

RV Rentals in Cloudland Canyon State Park

Transportation in Cloudland Canyon State Park

Driving

Cloudland Canyon State Park is 120 miles northwest of Atlanta, and 27 miles southwest of Chattanooga, Tennessee. It is easy to access Cloudland Canyon State Park by car or RV thanks to its proximity to many main roads and highways. There are three entrances to the park, all of which are located on the west side. If you need to pick up any supplies before your adventure, you can do so at Trenton, Fort Oglethorpe, or Lakeview.
There are no strict driving rules to follow while inside the park, but a driving license and a parking pass are mandatory to drive on the park roads. ATVs are not permitted inside the park, but golf carts are permitted on the park roads, just not on the hiking trails.

Parking

Public Transport

Campgrounds and parking in Cloudland Canyon State Park

Campsites in Cloudland Canyon State Park

Reservations camping

West Rim Campground

The West Rim Campground is the place to stay if you are traveling to Cloudland Canyon State Park in either your own or your rented RV. There is a total of 72 sites that can accommodate RVs, and they feature 20, 30, or 50 amp electrical hookups as well as water hookups. No sewer hookups are available, but modernly built, well maintained, and clean restrooms featuring showers and flush toilets are scattered throughout the park. You will also have access to a dump station, and each campsite offers picnic tables, stone campfire rings, and grills.
There are generally no restrictions on RV or trailer length, but most pads are up to 50 feet long. Smoking and alcohol consumption are prohibited, and pets must be on a leash at all times. There is no Wi-Fi, but mobile communication is supported. There are quiet hours instituted throughout the park at night, and any noise making instrument must not be used between these hours. Reservations for the West Rim Campground can be made online or by calling the park office. The campground is open all year.

Lookout Mountain / Chattanooga West KOA

If you are considering staying outside the campground, there are still some great RV-friendly camping options that you can choose from. For travelers also wanting to be close to the city of Chattanooga, check out the Lookout Mountain / Chattanooga West KOA. Here you will be close to the Appalachian Mountains, near historic Lookout Mountain, and minutes away from the beautiful city of Chattanooga.
Lookout Mountain/Chattanooga West KOA is situated on 37 acres of wooded native Appalachian forest, with gorgeous mountain views in every direction. Most sites are shaded, so you can relax and enjoy your time. RVs up to 70 feet in length can stay at the campground at one of the 84 available sites. Wi-Fi is also included with your stay so that you can live a little luxury! Kids of all ages can cool down in the saltwater, freeform pool, and the younger crowd can play on the giant jumping pad. There’s even a dog park for the pooch. Other on-site amenities include restroom and laundry facilities, hiking trails, and a grocery and supply store. Lookout Mountain / Chattanooga West KOA is open all year round, and reservations can be made online.

First-come first-served

First Come, First Served Camping

While there are no first-come, first-served RV campgrounds at Cloudland Canyon State Park there are 30 walk-in only tent sites. These sites are located in their own separate campground and are great for those looking to do some old school camping. The campground has limited facilities, but there is one toilet, and there is a parking area for you to leave your car.

Alternate camping

Group Camping at Cloudland Canyon State Park

If you are planning on bringing a large group to Cloudland Canyon State Park, there are two options for you to choose from. You could stay in one of the four pioneering campsites that hold a maximum of 25 people, or you could stay in the group lodge. The lodge is popular with school groups since it can sleep up to 40 people in the four bedrooms of the lodge. If you want to book the lodge or a pioneering group campsite we recommend you reserve them well in advance.

Alternate Camping at Cloudland Canyon State Park

For visitors to Cloudland Canyon State Park that are wanting to get out of the RV (or if you didn't travel in one), there are plenty of alternate camping opportunities available that may suit your needs. There are 16 very cute cottages that are perfect for a romantic escape, or a weekend of solitude. All of the cottages have two bedrooms and will offer you stunning views as they are located near the edge of the canyon.

For those looking to experience something a little different there are also 10 yurts that you could call home during your stay. The yurts have their own section in the campground known as the "Yurt Village" and are spread across two loops. There are no bathroom facilities in the yurt, but you can use those within the campground. Both the cottages and the yurts can be reserved in advance online or by calling the park.

Seasonal activities in Cloudland Canyon State Park

In-Season

Taking Cave Tours

Wholly engaging and exciting, Cloudland Canyon State Park’s cave tours are the height of adventure and thrill. A private company offers cave tours for adventure lovers, no matter whether you are visiting as a group or alone. Their tours are available for visits during April, June, July, September, and October, and these tours are family-friendly. Some of the cool features of the Cloudland Canyon Caves include enchanting limestone structures, slippery rocks, gorgeous rooms, and a breathtaking underground river. These exploratory tours take you on spectacular adventures where you slide through a slope, crawl through the mud, and float through the river. Kids under the age of 6 and pets are not allowed on any of the tours.

Picnicking

If you are seeking picnic pleasure, you will surely enjoy what there is to offer at the incredibly scenic Cloudland Canyon State Park. The picnic areas, featuring picnic tables, firewood, and grills, will get a top-class rating from you after you experience what they have to offer. There are a total of six picnic shelters, as well as a group shelter that can accommodate up to 175 people. If you would like to stay at the group shelter, you should book it in advance to ensure that you don't miss out.

Playing Outdoor Sports

You can play several sports at Cloudland Canyon State Park, including golf, tennis, and fishing. Bring in a little gaming fun to your RV-camping trip by either playing a round of golf in the park’s well-built and regularly maintained 18-hole disc golf course, or you can make use of the park’s tennis court to exhibit your skills or maybe learn the sport a little bit more. There is also a fishing pond at the park, which is well-stocked with catfish from Labor Day until the end of December. The most wonderful part is that you don’t need any fishing license to use it, so it is accessible to anyone and everyone!

Off-Season

Touring the Waterfalls

There is an abundance of drop-dead gorgeous waterfalls that are waiting for you to see at Cloudland Canyon State Park. Cherokee Falls and Hemlock Falls are two of them that we recommend. Deep down in the vastness of the canyon, Cherokee Falls flows to the left and Hemlock Falls cascades to the right side of the gorge. There is a striking similarity between both the falls, but Cherokee Falls is a little deeper towards the bottom. Also, Cherokee Falls is considered best for photography because of its vast area. Winter and spring are considered the most suitable times to visit and photograph the waterfalls.

Hiking

There is no shortage of hiking trails in Cloudland Canyon State Park. You can hike to your heart’s desire on Cloudland Canyon’s easy, strenuous, and moderately strenuous trails. The easiest trail is the Overlook Trail, which is only one-mile long and best suited for novices or those who want to soak in the beauty of the park’s rugged canyons and thick woodlands. The Meadowlands Trail and the two-mile Backcountry Loop Trail are moderately strenuous, with the former offering views of the golf course and the fishing pond, while the latter feasts hikers with the stunning spectacles of the campsites covered in hemlock and oak groves. The five-mile West Rim Loop Trail, rated as one of the top ten trails in the US, offers views of the Cloudland Canyon and is also moderately strenuous. The two-mile Waterfalls Trail transitioning into Cherokee and Hemlock Falls and the six-mile Sitton’s Gulch Trail following the Waterfalls Trail are both considered strenuous. If you plan on hiking, make sure you pack those boots in your camper.

Horseback Riding and Mountain Biking

Cloudland Canyon State Park’s hiking trails offer much more than the traditional hiking pleasures. You can ride on a horse or ride a mountain bike through the gorgeous terrains of the park while simultaneously soaking in all the beauty the viewpoints have to offer. The newly built 5 Points Recreation Area, which was formerly a coal mining site, and the Cloudland Connector Trail specifically provide the delights of mountain biking and horseback riding. Bikes can be rented from the park, but in order to enjoy horseback riding, you have to bring your own horse.

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