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Waterfalls, Hiking, and History Await Off the Natchez Trace

Summer is a great time for a road trip. Waterfalls and hiking trails are a popular destination for visitors and residents alike in Tennessee so they can quickly become crowded.

Not too far off the beaten path, however, you’ll find some of the most stunning views, rewarding hikes, and history preserved for your exploring!

The Natchez Trace Parkway is a Tennessee treasure that even many locals still don’t know about! It’s a 444 mile stretch of two-lane road that runs through Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee. Where it enters Hickman County, it offers a day’s worth of fun for the whole family!

Jackson Falls and Bakers Bluff Trail

Jackson Falls is a top 30 favorite site and the hike to get there is short, easy, and beautiful.

The Bakers Bluff Trail is ¾ of a mile and leads to a clear pool at the base of Jackson Falls where visitors can sit on a bench and take in the soothing sounds of water bouncing off rock.

Fun fact: The waterfall is new by geological standards. Thousands of years ago, floods and erosion chipped at the bluffs surrounding Jackson Branch creating a different path for the stream to flow through. Jackson Falls became the point at which the stream diverts into the Duck River, which is one of the most biodiverse rivers in the entire country.

Keep in mind… This trail may pose a challenge for travelers with bad knees. One reviewer said “It is steep climbing back up, but the entire path is well paved and easy to do. This is a must see if you are traveling.”

If you’re looking to extend your hike, the Old Trace Walking Trail is a mile away from the Bakers Bluff Trail and less than a mile long.

The Gordon House

There are only two original buildings left on the Natchez Trace Parkway. The Gordon House in Hickman County is one of those buildings.

Joseph Gordon was a soldier for General Andrew Jackson, a farmer, and a businessman who owned a trading post and ferry operation. The site of the ferry operation is a 10-minute walk away from the Gordon House. Gordon is also known for serving as Nashville’s first postmaster and a Justice of the Peace in Davidson County. He, his wife, and children settled down in Hickman County on the 640 acre plantation off the Natchez Trace Parkway in the early 1800s.

Fans of Roman architecture will admire the simplicity of the Federal-style home and will recognize many similarities between its features and longstanding government buildings.

There is even a short trail to the house for the insatiable hiker!

Plan Your Natchez Trace Road Trip Through Hickman County

You can’t go wrong by hopping on the Natchez Trace Parkway. Just make sure to shake out your legs in Hickman County’s portion of the Trace which is by far one of the most scenic and active portions.


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