Tennessee State Parks Area Manager Robin Wooten will take hikers on a 3-mile hike via Busby Falls, Adams Falls and Machine Falls Loop trails. The trails have many ups and downs, creek crossings and beautiful waterfalls so hikers should be prepared for a slower-paced hike with gorgeous scenery. Following the main excursion, there will be an optional 1.5-mile Laurel Bluff Loop Trail hike. Participants should meet at 10 a.m. at the Short Springs State Natural Area trailhead parking lot, located approximately 3.5 miles northeast of Tullahoma.
“Short Springs is an impressive area with biological diversity and breathtaking waterfalls,” Wooten said. “It is a great area for hikers that want to burn some winter energy in a beautiful setting.”
Short Springs State Natural Area’s biological diversity includes rich forest slopes and ravines, low cascades, springs and waterfalls. The Upper and Lower Busby Falls on Bobo Creek are two prominent cascading waterfalls that can be seen from overlooks on the Bobo Creek Trail. The steep escarpment, with its numerous wet-weather seeps, is particularly impressive during the moist winter and spring months.
Hikers should arrive dressed for the weather. In addition to wearing layers of clothing and sturdy boots, participants should also bring lunch and plenty of water. Reservations are required by January 24 and can be made by contacting Robin Wooten at (931) 239-0065 or at Robin.Wooten@tn.gov.
Short Springs is a 420-acre natural area located in Coffee County, approximately 3.5 miles northeast of Tullahoma. This natural area provides an excellent contrast between Highland Rim and Central Basin geology and vegetation. Thickets of mountain laurel grow on the upper slopes under a dry oak-hickory forest canopy that is characteristic of Highland Rim vegetation. The lower slopes and riparian areas along Bobo Creek support towering sycamore, buckeye, magnolia, beech and tulip poplar trees with a rich shrub layer and herbaceous cover. For information about Short Springs, including a map of the area, please visit http://www.tn.gov/environment/na/natareas/shortspr/.
Hikers interested in nearby camping or lodging should consider Old Stone Fort or Tims Ford state parks for overnight accommodations. Please visit www.tnstateparks.com for additional details.