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Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, Tennessee – Volunteer Vacations 2022

June 5 - June 11

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Encompassing 125,000 acres of the Cumberland Plateau, Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area protects the free-flowing Big South Fork of the Cumberland River and its tributaries. The area boasts miles of scenic gorges and sandstone bluffs, is rich with natural and historic features and has been developed to provide visitors with a wide range of outdoor recreational activities. There are five bridges in the Jakes Place (Historic) landscape which were built several years ago, and they are in need of being removed and rebuilt. American Hiking Society volunteers will work on replacing one of these bridges during your week of service. There are no buildings left standing at Jakes Place other than the remnants of an old fire place. There are three streams that meet at the Jakes Place to form the beginning of Station Camp Creek. With the beginning of summer the area is abundant with wildlife, wildflowers, birds and lush green trees. It is an area for foot traffic only and it is truly a peaceful area to visit, even if only for one day.

AHS acknowledges with gratitude that this project takes place on the traditional lands of the ᏣᎳᎫᏪᏘᏱ Tsalaguwetiyi (Cherokee, East), S’atsoyaha (Yuchi), Shawandasse Tula and (Shawanwaki/Shawnee)peoples past and present. We honor the land itself, the Indigenous communities who have stewarded this land for generations, and those who continue to steward these lands today. AHS invites all volunteers to join us in our commitment to support and amplify the work of Indigenous communities as they work to dismantle the systems of oppression that these communities continue to face today.


National Park Service


Car Camping Tent Sites


Day hiking up to 2 miles each work day.

Project Rating


Minimum Volunteer Age


Maximum Group Size


Area and Attractions

The Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area is located in a rugged gorge area of the Cumberland Plateau. The area offers fishing, swimming, and paddling in addition to over 400 miles of hiking, mountain biking, horse riding and multi-use trails. The area is home to several arches, beautiful overlooks and geological wonders. Horse back trips into the park are offered by vendors from outside the park. Although somewhat remote, the nearest towns are Oneida and Jamestown. Each town is about 15-20 miles driving distance away from the campground. Pickett State Park adjoins the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area and and offers a lake with fishing and canoe rentals.

Accommodations Description

Volunteers will be staying in a group campground with a covered pavilion. The pavilion is on a concrete pad and is screened in with picnic tables, fire place and cooking grill inside. The group campground is large enough to hold 75 campers so social distancing is easily accomplished during this event. Hot showers and bath houses are within a short distance of the pavilion.


McGhee Tyson Airport in Knoxville, TN is the closest airport. Airport pickup is not provided for this trip. Volunteers are responsible for transportation to and from camp and the work site. Carpooling can be arranged once the project is confirmed.


Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area
4564 Leatherwood Road, Oneida, TN 37841 United States + Google Map