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Special Weekend Trip! Natchez Trace State Park, TN – Volunteer Vacation 2024

November 14 @ 5:00 pm - November 17 @ 12:00 pm

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Under President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal Program approximately 48,000 acres of land were purchased in the area of the park. This purchase provided jobs for many people. Programs such as the Civilian Conservation Corps and Works Progress Administration established many of the buildings still being used today and laid the foundation for what is now Natchez Trace State Park at the core of the large tract of public lands.

The park’s hiking trails range from a one-half mile up to 4.5 miles, and a 40 mile overnight trail. The trails wind through the forest and fields and along the lakeshores and streams of Natchez Park. Visitors also enjoy the museum that features local and park history, picnic facilities, camping, cabins and lodges, boating and the park’s restaurant.

Volunteers will focus on re-routing a section of the 40 mile Red Leaves Backpacking Trail, within the 48,000 acre Natchez Trace State Park and Forest. Volunteers will learn about sustainable trail design, trail maintenance, and hone their trail building skills utilizing various tools including Pulaskis and Mcleods. The new trail segment will be built near the scenic 58 acre Cub Creek Lake. Trail building each day will be moderate with hikes of less than one mile to the work site. Volunteers will have access to the park’s fishing boats, kayaks, and pedal boats for afternoon relaxation. Also, the 48,000 acre recreation area boasts 4 lakes and nearly 50 miles of hiking trails, and over 100 miles of multi-use trails. Trail access is on both paved and unpaved roads. Volunteers will need to drive or carpool to the project site.

During this trip, Natchez Trace State Park’s average high temperature is 67°, and average low temperature is 45°.

There is no experience needed to join a Volunteer Vacation! Your expert hosts will provide detailed instruction, tool demonstrations, and project oversight throughout the week. All you need is a willing attitude and to be in good physical condition to participate in moderate physical activity for approximately 6-8 hours a day with plenty of breaks, at your own pace. Find out more about what it’s like to join a Volunteer Vacation and other frequently asked questions here.

AHS acknowledges with gratitude that this project takes place on the traditional lands of the ᏣᎳᎫᏪᏘᏱ Tsalaguwetiyi (Cherokee, East), Chikashsha I̠yaakni’ (Chickasaw), S’atsoyaha (Yuchi), and Shawandasse Tula (Shawanwaki/Shawnee) peoples past and present. We honor the land itself, the Indigenous communities who have stewarded this land for generations, their deep and sacred connection to these lands, and those who continue to steward these lands today. We offer this land acknowledgement as the first of many steps to stand as an ally and amplify Indigenous voices. We invite the American Hiking Society community to join us through continued efforts to support Indigenous communities and learn more about the history of the lands on which we live, work and recreate.

Click here for a PDF of trip details.


Natchez Trace State Park




Trail access is on both paved and unpaved roads. Volunteers will need to drive or carpool to the project site.

Project Rating


Minimum Volunteer Age


Maximum Group Size


Area and Attractions

Natchez Trace State Park and Forest contains 48,000 heavily forested acres of hardwood and pine, with many lakes and abundant wildlife including turkey, deer, squirrels and many bird species. Volunteers will be working near the picturesque Cub Creek Lake, a 58 acre lake built by the Civilian Conservation Corp in 1938. The park has 13.5 miles of hiking trails, ranging from a one-half mile up to 4.5 miles, and a 40 mile overnight trail (where volunteers will be working). The trails wind through the forest and fields and along the lake shores and streams of Natchez Park. Visit Casey Jones Home & Railroad Museum in Jackson, about an hour drive, featuring the former home of Jones, a museum, country store and shopping venue or drive 1.5 hours to see Nashville, the capital of Tennessee.

Accommodations Description

Volunteers will stay in the group lodge which consists of five separate cottages, four of which sleep 10 each and one which will accommodate eight, each with a full kitchen, two full baths, dining room, living room, and deck with a picnic table. All sleeping arrangements are bunk beds. Volunteers need to bring their own sleeping bags or linens, towels, and personal toiletries.


Nashville International Airport in Nashville, Tennessee is the closest major airport. Airport pick up and drop off is not available for volunteers, however carpooling and rideshare can be arranged upon confirmation of the trip. Natchez Trace State Park is about a 2 hour drive from Nashville International Airport.


Natchez Trace State Park
24845 Natchez Trace Rd, Wildersville, TN 38388 United States + Google Map