Pot Point Loop

A lesser-visited loop in Prentice Cooper State Forest with plenty of views along the way.

Trail Running Difficult

Distance
18 km
Ascent
558 m
Descent
558 m
Duration
2-3 hrs
Low Point
428 m
High Point
563 m
Gradient
Pot Point Loop Map

Pot Point Loop is one of two popular trail running routes in Prentice Cooper State Forest—Mullens Cove Loop being the other. Both loops combined make up 33.8 miles of the Cumberland Trail and hikers often pair them into an overnight trip.

Description

The loop begins at the parking area for Snoopers Rock Overlook. Just a short walk in you're rewarded with an incredibly beautiful overlook of the Chattanooga River. Being close to the parking lot, this is a common destination for a short walk or a great place to enjoy lunch at the end of your run.

Run clockwise, the trail hugs elevation contours as it follows the curve of the Chattanooga River below. Along the way, you'll pass over Natural Bridge, a landmark with a unique traverse over a rock that is "about 25 feet high and 35 feet wide," according to cumberlandtrail.org. Pot Point lies ahead before the trail turns west.

Accessible by a short spur, Raccoon Mountain Overlook lies along the southern stretch of the route and provides some partial views to the river below. This is also an excellent opportunity to enjoy a secluded lunch away from the frequently visited Snoopers Rock.

The southwestern corner of the loop passes Gulf Camp, a popular overnight stop for hikers. Crossing Tower Drive, you'll pass a trail kiosk before meandering to the Ransom Hollow Overlook. Another short spur leads to another overlook with partial views to the west.

The loop finishes by sharing a short stretch of trail with the Mullens Cove Loop as you return to the parking lot. Camping is available at Hemlock Branch, just west of where the loops join back together should you wish to spend the night.

Sources: https://www.cumberlandtrail.org/maps-and-guides/trail-segments/tn-river-gorge/pot-point-loop/

Difficulty

Difficult

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

3 out of 4

Little chance of being seen or helped in case of an accident.

Best time to visit

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area