North Chickamauga Creek Gorge State Natural Area To Be Closed Temporarily

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Tennessee State Parks would like to inform the general public that the North Chickamauga Creek Gorge State Natural Area, which is a portion of the Justin P. Wilson Cumberland Trail State Park, will be closed in June, and will reopen on July 1.

The temporary closure will block off the park entrance at Montlake Road in Hamilton County, along with the trail head. Maintenance, construction, visitor protection, and resource protection projects are scheduled in response to damage from years of unauthorized parking, trampling and erosion.

Volunteers are needed to assist with the rehabilitation efforts on June 6, 9, 14, 17, 21, 25 and 28. Five new trails will be developed as designated access points to the banks of Chickamauga Creek. All of the rogue trails will be closed, so the natural area grounds can be improved. Volunteers should bring gloves, food and drink, insect repellant and wear pants and boots.

“In an effort to preserve and protect the fragile environment in this section of the park, our Division of Natural Areas has recommended a temporary closure in order for these significant species to rejuvenate,” said Brock Hill, deputy commissioner for Parks and Conservation. “During this time, our park staff will be enhancing the trail system, as well as making efforts to provide a safe and fun experience for park guests at ‘North Chick’.”

The North Chickamauga Creek Gorge acquisition was completed using a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Recovery Land Acquisition Grant. The objective of this grant-funded land acquisition project was to protect and conserve the habitat and known occurrences of three federally listed species: large-flowered skullcap (Scutellaria montana), Virginia spiraea (Spiraea virginiana), and bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus).

Volunteer registration is available by contacting 423 566-2229 or For more information about the Justin P. Wilson Cumberland Trail State Park, visit

Volunteer opportunities include:

Thursday, May 29

On May 29, a volunteer work day will be held on the Cumberland Trail. The day will include a visit to Mushroom Rock, Tennessee’s most impressive sandstone pedestal, and to a stretch of North Suck Creek. Repair of the 225-foot suspension bridge is the focus of this volunteer activity. Volunteers should meet at the Shackleford Ridge Park picnic shelter parking area at 9 a.m. and bring gloves, water and lunch. For more information or to register as a volunteer, contact, 423 322-5160 or 423 566-2229.

June 1-30

This volunteer opportunity features construction of the Cumberland Trail along a sky-high ridgeline in Campbell County, northeast of LaFollette.  Volunteers are invited to join trail construction five days per week with AmeriCorps and the State Park Trail Crew. June 10,17, and 24 are featured volunteer days. Volunteer registration is required by contacting 423 566-2229 or AmeriCorps Volunteers will assist with construction and volunteer training.  

June 6-28

Volunteers are needed June 6, 9, 14, 17, 21, 25, 28 at North Chickamauga Creek Gorge State Natural Area to improve visitor safety and protection of natural features at the site. Five new trails will be developed as designated access points to the banks of a spectacular river. Rogue trails will be closed, and the natural area grounds will be improved. The trailhead will be closed to the general public during June. Volunteers should bring gloves, food and drink, insect repellant and wear pants and boots. Volunteer registration is available by contacting 423 566-2229 or


Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond To Address Hamilton County School Board Tonight

Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond will address the Hamilton County School Board and HCDE Officials at their regularly scheduled meeting tonight at 5:30 p.m.   The meeting will take place at the HCDE Board Room, 3074 Hickory Valley Road.   A copy of tonight’s agenda can be found here .  (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: AGUSTIN, BRIAN FELIX  G3003 4TH AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37407  Age at Arrest: 18 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga THEFT OF PROPERTY --- ALBEE, JEREMY EUGENE  HOMELESS CHATTANOOGA,  Age at Arrest: 39 years old Arresting Agency: Chatt. Housing Authority PUBLIC INTOXICATION --- ... (click for more)

Avoid Underage Drinking And Other Prom Drama

My high school prom took a dramatic turn when two guys got their tuxedo jackets mixed up. One of them belonged to my date, who kindly offered to keep my wallet in his pocket. That’s the jacket another young man mistakenly grabbed off the back of a chair before heading to an underage drinking party that got shut down by police well after midnight—as kids scattered in every direction.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Famed Freitas Speech

Several weeks ago a member of the Virginia House of Delegates (that’s what Virginia calls the state legislature) stood up and before that body responded to a claim by a Democratic lawmaker that Republicans were pro-Second Amendment and segregationists. Nick Freitas, who did two tours in Iraq with our Army’s Special Forces and has talked candidly about losing friends to terrorist ... (click for more)

Keiser, Wigg Power Ooltewah Past East Hamilton, 9-5, in 5-3A Baseball

Frustrated by an early season hitting slump, Ooltewah left-fielder Payton Keiser broke loose with four hits, including a clutch three-run triple in a five-run seventh inning, and drove in five runs as the Owls beat rival East Hamilton, 9-5, Tuesday in District 5-3A action in horrible weather for baseball. Keiser had run-scoring singles in the second and fourth innings and ... (click for more)

Cleveland Rally Tops Walker Valley, 4-1

CHARLESTON, Tenn – Cleveland pitching ace Camden Sewell is used to the gaudy individual numbers and he rarely disappoints. Unfortunately, he has walked off the mound a few too many times in tough battles such as the one with Walker Valley  Tuesday  night without the one number he most cherishes.   That number being the one you put in the win column. ... (click for more)