Welcome to the National Park
Moccasin Bend is a national park unit in progress. The staff of Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park is currently working on a management plan for this section of the Park. Minimal visitor services are available until this management plan is complete and approved by the National Park Service. In the meantime, two interesting hiking trails are open to the public daily between the hours of 6 AM and sunset. Free. Public restrooms are not yet available and no overnight parking is allowed
Moccasin Bend and its Trails
From Atlanta: drive I-75 North to I-24 West, then follow directions below.
From Knoxville: drive I-75 South to I-24 West, then follow directions below.
From Nashville: I-24 East, then follow directions below.
From Birmingham: follow I-59 to I-24 East, then follow directions below.
From Huntsville: follow Hwy 72 to I-24 East, then from I-24.
Then take I-24 toward downtown Chattanooga, and U.S. Highway 27 North to the Manufacturers Road exit just past the Olgiati Bridge over the Tennessee River. At the exit, turn left onto Manufacturers Road. Proceed .5 mile to Hamm Road. Turning left on Hamm Road, proceed for .8 mile to Moccasin Bend Road.
Turning LEFT on Moccasin Bend Road from Hamm Road, the Blue Blazes trailhead will be found on the right after .9 miles.
1.2 mile round trip from the trailhead to the site of Brown’s Ferry on the Tennessee River and back, The Federal Road follows the historic route of the Cherokee Forced Removal of 1838 and of the “Cracker Line” that provided Union soldiers under siege in Civil War Chattanooga with lifesaving supplies in 1863. Interpretive signage along the trail is designed to help hikers understand both events.
Turning RIGHT on Moccasin Bend Road from Hamm Road, parking for the Federal Road will be found on the left after 2.6 miles, where Riverside Avenue intersects with Moccasin Bend Road.
History of Moccasin Bend Park
Moccasin Bend occupies a meander in the Tennessee River where it meets the rocky Cumberland Plateau. The Bend got its name from its “shoelike” appearance when viewed from nearby Lookout Mountain. Moccasin Bend tells the American story—much of which predates written history. It demonstrates 12,000 years of archeological and historical evidence of human community: layer upon layer of artifacts from the mists of prehistory (the Paleo-Indian, Archaic, Woodland and Mississippian Periods), Euro-American contact, Cherokee life and Removal, American settlement, Civil War, and the growth of Chattanooga.
The area was designated a national park because it has national significance. A 1998 assessment by the National Park Service, Chattanooga-Hamilton County Regional Planning Agency, State of Tennessee, and culturally affiliated American Indian tribes concluded that “the quality, diversity and broad accessibility of these resources cannot be matched in any other American metropolitan area.”