Places We Protect

Pogue Creek Canyon


A high elevation view of the autumn forest and sheer canyon walls in Pogue Creek Canyon in Tennessee.
Pogue Creek Canyon in Tennessee. © Byron Jorjorian

Pogue Creek Canyon is an ecological and geological jewel of the northern Cumberland Plateau.



The the Pogue Creek Canyon State Natural Area is located just west of Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area and adjacent to Pickett State Park on its west side. Considered an ecological and geological jewel of the northern Cumberland Plateau, it boasts features reminiscent of America's canyons--immense, multicolored sandstone bluffs, mesas, arches, waterfalls and caves--as well as the winding creek itself and its deep surrounding gorge.

In 2005, The Nature Conservancy aquired the property before transferring it to the State of Tennessee in 2006 to be designated as a state natural area. Today, it provides miles of beautiful hiking trails for the public to enjoy. 



The Pogue Creek Canyon State Natural Area is managed by the State of Tennessee.

Explore our work in this region

Cumberland Sandwort
Species Recovery Since 2006, TNC worked with partners to recover the endangered Cumberland Sandwort. © Randall Spradlin/State of Tennessee
Cumberland Sandwort
Celebrating Success TNC gathers with partners involved in working to recover the (formerly) federally endangered Cumberland Sandwort. © Randall Spradlin/State of Tennessee

Saving a Species

Over the years, TNC sponsored extensive biological surveys of the property's plant and animal species. In addition to its outstanding natural features, Pogue Creek Canyon contains more than 300 kinds of native plants as well as an abundant variety of birds, aquatic animals, amphibians and cave species. 

Rare animals in the area include the bald eagle, Swainson's warbler, the Eastern slender glass lizard and the green salamander. Because of its unusual sandstone formations, the area also harbors a number of rare plant varieties, such as Cumberland sandwort and Lucy Braun's white snakeroot. 

In 2022, TNC and partners gathered at Pickett Civilian Conservation Corps Memorial State Park to celebrate the delisting of the Cumberland Sandwort from the federal Endangered Species Act after many years of recover efforts. Several in attendance on that day played a significant role in conserving the species and enjoyed the recognition for many years of work that paid off with a hard fought victory for nature. The Cumberland Sandwort represents the third plant to be delisted as a result of species recovery in the state. The others being Eggert’s sunflower and Tennessee purple coneflower. 

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Help us work with landowners and ensure a future in which people and nature can thrive.