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Prentice Cooper State Forest

Saturday, May 11, 2024

Other Names

Prentice Cooper Wildlife Management Area, Marion County, Tennessee River Gorge

Last Known StatusOpen

This state forest offers many miles of ATV trails that form long loops plus fantastic views of the Tennessee River. The trails are mostly wide and consist of hard packed dirt with light elevation changes. Some sections are a little rugged and feature the occasional obstacle and some loose chunk rock to keep things interesting. Most of the trails are rated easy to moderate and all vehicles types are permitted.

The forest has two designated campgrounds that provide direct trail access but small trailers are advised to stage at Hunters Check Station since there is more turnaround room then at Davis Pond. Hunters Check Station is located just before the forest gates and has about 15 wooded sites, each with a fire ring. There is an overflow gravel lot across from this campground where larger RVs can dry camp. Davis Pond is located further south and is basically an open grassy field with a pond, perfect for tent campers. There is no water or electric hookups but there is no fee charged to camp. Stays are limited to 14 days.

Visitors should note that this trail system is closed to offroad use from December 20 through March 15 and during scheduled turkey hunts, which is usually held in April. Tower Drive (south of Pot Point Road), Elder Point, Long Point and Inman Point trails are also closed to motorized use from late April through early July for turkey nesting season. Exact dates vary each year, so call first before heading out.

Trail Map... Nearby ATV Trails...


Permit RequiredNo
Dates OpenMarch 15 - December 19
Other ATV Stickers AcceptedUnknown
Spark ArrestorYesA spark arresting exhaust silencer or end cap is required for all vehicles.
Noise Limit
Whip FlagsNot Required
Maximum Vehicle WidthNo Restriction
Allow Dirt Bikes, Trail Bikes and Motorcycles Motorcycles & Dirt BikesPermitted
Allow All Terrain Vehicles / Quads / Four Wheelers Four WheelersPermitted
Allow Utility Terrain Vehicles, Side by Sides (SXS), RZR UTV & SXSPermitted
Allow 4x4 Jeeps, SUVs and 4 x 4 Trucks with License Plates SUVs & Jeeps (registered)Permitted
Dune Buggy & Sand Rail
4x4 (unregistered)
2 Stroke EnginesNo Restriction
Camping / Overnight RV Parking CampingSome Areas(camp in developed sites only)
permitted at Davis Pond Campground and Hunter's Check Station
Campfire Restrictions CampfiresSome Areas(permitted in developed campsites only)
Night RidingNoriding hours sunrise to sunset
Trail BlazingProhibitedstay on the trail
Rule Enforcement


Approx Size24,686 acres (39 sq mi)
Miles Of Trail50
Climate TypeForest
Elevation600 to 1800 ft.
Trail MaintenanceMarked, Not Rated, Lightly Maintained
Loose DirtThis trail has some loose dirt.Some
Hard PackThe trail has mostly hard pack terrain.Mostly
SandThis trail has no sandy areas.None
MudThe trail has some mud after it rains.Some
DustThe trail has little dust on typical days.Little
RocksThis trail has some rocks.Some
TreesThe trail has almost all trees.All
Steep HillsThis trail has some steep hills.Some
Water CrossingsThe trail has few water crossings.Few
Small JumpsThis trail has no small jumps.None
Large JumpsThis trail has no large jumps.None
BermsThe trail has no berms.None
Sand/Gravel PitsThis state forest has no sand or gravel pits.None
Single TrackThis state forest has no single track trails.None
RoadsThis state forest has few roads.Few
ShadeThis state forest has many shaded areas.Many
HazardsThis trail has few hazards.Few(hazards assumed marked but use caution)
Easy Terrain NoviceThis trail has some beginner terrain.Some
Moderate Terrain AmateurThis trail has mostly intermediate level terrain.Mostly
Difficult Terrain ExpertThis trail has some expert terrain.Some


AreaMotorized Trails
LandState Forest


Gasoline Gasoline5-20 Miles (NW)Crossroads Market (423) 658-9050
Diesel Diesel5-20 Miles (NW)Crossroads Market (423) 658-9050
Potable Water Water5-20 Miles (S)Raccoon Mountain RV Park and Campground (423) 821-9403 or (800) 823-2267
RV Hookups RV Hookup5-20 Miles (S)Raccoon Mountain RV Park and Campground (423) 821-9403 or (800) 823-2267
RV Dump Station RV Disposal5-20 Miles (S)Raccoon Mountain RV Park and Campground (423) 821-9403 or (800) 823-2267
Primitive Camping CampgroundOn Site
Convenience Store Conv Store5-20 Miles (NW)Crossroads Market (423) 658-9050




Our RatingRatingGood
Recommended StayFull Day
Comments(Scroll Down For Rider Reviews & Comments)


Nearest CityChattanooga, TN
AddressGame Reserve Road, Chattanooga, TN 37405
Go Back To Tennessee List
Trail MapGo To Trail Map
From: Chattanooga, TN
1) Take US-27 North about 2 miles to exit for US-127/Signal Mountain
2) Merge onto US-127/Signal Mountain Road, continue 1.7 miles
3) Turn left (west) onto Suck Creek Road, continue 8 miles
4) Turn left (west) onto Choctaw Trail, continue .2 miles
5) Turn left (south) onto Game Reserve Road, continue about 2 miles
6) Hunters Check Station Campground is on the right (west).

For Davis Pond Camground:
7) Continue south past Hunters Check Station Campground about 8 miles
8) Campground entrance is on the left (east).


Contact InfoAnthony Johnson (Forest Supervisor)
Prentice Cooper State Forest
P.O. Box 160
Hixson, TN 37343
(423) 658-5551


Prentice Cooper Trail Photo

Prentice Cooper State Forest Trail

Photo Submitted 10/24/2012 (Thanks!)

Prentice Cooper Trail Photo

Rock ledge with view of Tennessee River.

Photo Submitted 11/13/2012 (Thanks!)

Prentice Cooper Trail Photo

Father and son overlooking Tennessee River.

Photo Submitted 7/15/2013 (Thanks!)

Prentice Cooper Trail Photo

View of Tennessee River from ATV trail.

Photo Submitted 12/20/2013 (Thanks!)

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