Near Ozone Falls. Before picture on steep side slope high above Fall Creek. September 2019. (Wilson)
Finished trail on 42 percent side slope above Fall Creek. Ozone Section nears completion October 2019. (Wilson)
Before. Hand built sections frequently require moving large rocks to create a safe trail surface. DBT Section. (Bernsten)
In progress picture. Many of the rocks removed, the trail takes shape along Devil’s Breakfast Table Section in Catoosa WMA. (Bernsten)
Huge boulders must be moved to provide stable ground for trail along side slope near Ozone Falls. Construction continues on a steep section for the last half mile of the Black Mountain to Ozone Section. (Wilson)
After. Boulders are moved and ground prepared for final trail construction. (Wilson)
Beautiful finished trail about the middle of the six mile Devil’s Breakfast Table Section. (Bernsten)
CTC professional trail builders move from one area to another as contracts, hunting seasons and weather permits. Two key links in the 300 mile Cumberland Trail are very close to completion.
Both sections are roughly 6 miles and link available parking areas. When open, Devil’s Breakfast Table Section creates an uninterrupted 20 mile hike from Nemo Bridge in Morgan County to Peavine Road in Cumberland County.
The Ozone Falls Section links Ozone Falls State Natural Area near Interstate 40 with Black Mountain. When open, it will create an uninterrupted 17 mile hike from Ozone Falls SNA to Jewett Road. The last mile of trail from Jewett Road to Head of the Sequatchie Ranger station is still in the planning stages.
Above are a few images from the final push on each section. The last mile to Ozone is on a very steep, high side slope over Fall Creek. It works its way down to the bottom of the falls through a jumble of huge boulders and must all be done by hand. Trail Boss, Shauna Wilson describes the work as “the most technical and probably the most dangerous build in the last ten years on the trail.”
While much of both sections were roughed out with trail equipment, final grooming is always hand done. And some sections can only be done by hand. Devil’s Breakfast Table Section is no exception.