• fog flows through Cumberland Gap

    Cumberland Gap

    National Historical Park KY,TN,VA

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  • Sugar Run Trail Closed to Horses

    The Sugar Run Trail is temporarily closed to horse use due to the number of fallen trees as a result of recent storms. The trail is still open for hikers, but hikers should use caution.

  • Shuttle to Hensley Settlement

    There will be no shuttle or tour to Hensley Settlement on August 10, 2014. Tours on other days will continue to be offered as scheduled. For questions and more information please call the park visitor center at (606) 248-2817, extension 1075.

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    Support the park's "Back the Bears" campaign and help keep our bears wild and safe! More »

  • Cave Tour Alert!

    White Nose Syndrome is a disease that is killing bats in great numbers and has been found in park caves. While visiting Gap Cave please do not wear or bring anything that has been in other caves. Skylight Cave is currently closed.


Ribbon cutting commemorating safety institute
H. Thomas McGrath, Superintendent of the Historic Preservation Training Center in Frederick, MD (fourth from right) and Mark Woods, Superintendent of Cumberland Gap National Historical Park (back row, third from right) attend ribbon cutting

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News Release Date: September 9, 2009
Contact: Mark Woods, Superintendent, (606) 248-2817

A unique partnership between the National Park Service and Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College (KCTC) College continues to flourish, empowering employee safety.  At a recent meeting at Cumberland Gap National Historical Park (NHP), located in Middlesboro, KY, also home to of one of KCTC’s campuses, H. Thomas McGrath, Superintendent of the Historic Preservation Training Center in Frederick, MD and Mark Woods, Superintendent of Cumberland Gap NHP showcased the evolution of this remarkable partnership and praised the KCTC for its commitment to safety training, its dedication to providing NPS employees superior training and its flexibility and patience when dealing with sometimes cumbersome government practices.


McGrath explained that the resources of KCTC were tapped into in the late 1990’s when the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Southeast Regional Office were searching for ways to improve the safety of their heavy equipment operators.  At that time, KCTC was heralded and continues to be applauded, for its business of working with Kentucky’s industries, including the coal mining business, in preparing the youth of today for jobs of tomorrow.  Woods further elaborated that many NPS employees were traveling to KCTC’s Middlesboro, KY campus to participate in safety training.  “However, the NPS began to experience reduced funding for training and travel ceilings were imposed.  KCTC, under the leadership of President Bruce Ayers, looked upon this as not an obstacle, but as a great opportunity to take their ‘show on the road’ to individual parks from Alaska to Guam; from Massachusetts to Puerto Rico.  KCTC has now provided classes in 17 park areas and has touched 632 employees from 127 parks, including Haleakala and Hawaii Volcano National Parks, George Washington Memorial Parkway, Golden Gate National Recreation Area, Voyageurs National Park, Virgin Islands National Park, San Juan National Historic Site, War in the Pacific National Historical Park and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. ”


The safety training that KCTC has been providing for the NPS has been the catalyst for the expansion of their program resulting in the Kentucky Safety-Training Institute, whose logo was unveiled at this recent meeting.  The same training that has been provided to NPS employees will now be offered to municipalities, county governments, local schools and others that need it.

Did You Know?

Pioneers cross Cumberland Gap

Between 1775 and 1810 some 300,000 settlers crossed Cumberland Gap and began settling the land west of the Appalachians. These brave pioneers were following dreams of prosperity in the wilderness of Kentucky.