Visitors to the city of Loudon will find that the state of Tennessee has some beautiful countryside including several state parks where visitors to the area can enjoy the great outdoors with hiking, fishing, boating and other related activities. One of the most popular parks close to the city of Loudon is the Fort Loudon state park, which is situated in an area that was of great historical significance as it was one of the earliest colonial fortifications on the western frontier, and in the heart of land occupied by the Cherokee Nation.
It has 1200 acres of land set against the stunning backdrop of the Appalachian Mountains, with much of the park’s land covering an island on the Tellico Lake which makes it perfect for those who enjoy water sports and angling in particular. The latter will find an abundance of sites along the shores as well as a dock and pier that are ideal for launching a small boat plus there are several ramps just outside the park boundaries for this purpose too that are open to the general public. However, there are licensing laws with regards to fishing in this area so with the exception of juveniles under 13 years of age, one will need a standard permit which can be bought from the county clerks or TWRA office nearby as well as being available to purchase at many of the local sporting goods or hardware stores and gas stations in the area. A Junior Fishing License also needs to be acquired for 13-15 year olds too. There are no restrictions with regards to the type of boat permitted on the lake including jet skis and speed boats so whether you want to go sailing, water skiing or swimming, this is a popular spot for both tourists and locals especially during the hot summer months. Hiking trails and picnic facilities also form part of this national park which also hosts several annual events throughout the year including the Garrison weekend which is held early summer and features activities and re-enactments portraying the lives of the early settlers to the area.
The Norris dam State Park is slightly further away from the city of Loudon in Lake City but covers a much larger area – almost 5,000 acres – which includes a boating marina on the shore of Lake Norris and a fully equipped campsite with log cabins for rent. The latter are a recent addition to the park and include 19 rustic vacation cabins and 10 three-bedroom deluxe cabins which are all situated in tranquil woodland settings with full self catering facilities inside for cooking etc. There are also an abundance of hiking trails that run for miles through the deeply forested valleys and mountain ridges. The Cumberland Mountain State Park is near the town of Crossville and is situated on the magnificent Cumberland Plateau which extends all the way from Central Alabama to western New York. Boats of various types including paddle boats, canoes and kayaks can be rented here in the park for use on Byrd Lake.