• One of the Twin Arches by Deannia Murphy

    Big South Fork

    National River & Recreation Area KY,TN

Online Backcountry Permits

Please read and follow the guidelines below for your safety and enjoyment of the backcountry areas of the Big South Fork NRRA.

Contact a Ranger at 423-286-7275 for more information.
*I have read and agree with the conditions to the right.

Travel in Big South Fork's backcountry has inherent risks and hikers assume complete responsibility for their own safety. Rescue is not a certainty. Backcountry users should be in good physical condition and should be able to survive on their own by taking the necessary precautions and equipment. Your safety is your responsibility.

*I have read and agree with the conditions to the right.

In large camping areas, camps should be 200 feet from streams and trails and 1/4 mile from springs. Camping in previously used areas or on bare ground is encouraged.

*I have read and agree with the conditions to the right.

Backcountry groups are limited to a maximum of 24 people sharing the same affiliation, scout troop, family, friends in the same area, route, or trail, on the same day. Your permits will be denied and/or you will receive a ticket if you are in violation of this regulation. This regulation is strictly enforced.

*I have read and agree with the conditions to the right.

Pets must be on a leash at all times.

All natural objects and cultural artifacts are protected and must be left where they are found.

Human waste should be buried at least 6 inches deep and whenever possible, 200 feet away from water, dry wash areas, or designated campsites. All trash, including toilet paper, should be packed out.

Purify all water before drinking.

I have read and fully understand the rules associated with my trip and I agree to comply accordingly. Failure to comply with regulations will result in revocation of this permit and a fine.

I will contact the Park Fee Office at 1-423-569-2404 ext 267 if there is a reduction in my group size or cancellation of a trip.

I will notify the backcountry office at 423-569-9778 if my vehicle or emergency contact information changes. Failure to do so will delay search and rescue efforts.

I will print and carry my permit with me, and I will advise a friend or family member to notify the National Park Service if I am overdue.

*I have read and agree with the conditions to the right.

Use the standard method of hanging backpacks and food sacks at least 10 feet off the ground and 4 feet away from the tree trunk.
Any food not in use should be stored in this manner while in the backcountry. Plan your meals carefully so excess food is not left over.
Do not sleep in clothes you have cooked in, as the food odor left on your clothes may attract a bear. Consider cooking some distance from your sleeping area.

All backcountry permits are FEE FREE if you plan to use them during the following dates:
January 20, 2014 Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Observance
February 15-17, 2014 President's Day Weekend
April 19-20, 2014 First Weekend of National Park Week
August 25, 2014 National Park Service Birthday
September 27, 2014 National Public Lands Day
November 11, 2014 Veterans Day

Stop by one of the Park's visitor centers to obtain your free permit.

For more information contact the fee office at 423-569-2404 ext 267 or by email at tish_neal@nps.gov





If you have trouble getting a permit through the online site, contact our office at 423-286-8368 to obtain the permit over the phone. Business hours are Sunday through Thursday 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (EDT); Fridays and Saturdays 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. (EDT).

Did You Know?

Archeology dig occuring at Big South Fork

In terms of total sites, Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area is the most important archaeological location in the Southeast Region of the National Park Service. The 1,335 documented archaeological sites at Big South Fork represent only 20% of the estimated total for the park. More...