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TENNESSEE WILDLIFE VIEWING TRAIL » East Tennessee
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Harrison Bay State Park

Site Directions:
From Chattanooga: Take exit 4 off I-75 onto Hwy 153. Travel north on Hwy 153. At the sixth exit, Hwy 58, turn north. Travel approximately 12 miles to Harrison Bay Rd on the left. Follow signs to the park entrance. The entrance is approximately one mile on the left.

From Knoxville: From I-75, take exit 25, Hwy 60. Travel on Hwy 60 approximately 9 miles to Hwy 58. Turn south on Hwy 58 and travel approximately 15 miles to Harrison Bay Rd. The entrance is approximately one mile on the left.

Pull off along the lake just off Hwy 58 on Harrison Bay Rd. -
Lat:
35.159065°N, Long: -85.107425°W
Main park entrance - Lat: 35.173966°N, Long: -85.116513°W
Bear Trace golf course: Lat: 35.198132°N, Long: -85.103467°W

Hours: daylight hours
Seasonality: year round
Fees: none

Site Description: The 1,200-acre Harrison Bay State Park, with approximately 40 miles of Chickamauga Lake shoreline, was originally developed as a Tennessee Valley Authority recreation demonstration area in the 1930's. Its name is derived from a large bay at the main channel of the Tennessee River that covers the old town of Harrison, and the last Cherokee Campground. The parklands are of historic significance because the Cherokee Campground consisted of three villages which were ruled by one of the last great Cherokee Chieftains, Chief Joe Vann. This beautiful wooded park is a haven for campers, boaters and fishermen, as well as picnickers and other day-use visitors from Chattanooga and the surrounding tri-state area.

There is a gravel pull off and drive through road on the west side of Harrison Bay Rd just after turning off Hwy 58. This area should be checked out for gulls, loons, and ducks in winter. Woodland birds can also be found here as the site has some forest cover. The main part of the park has multiple access areas to the shoreline and all areas are worth exploring. Get a park map and drive around the park.

Wildlife to Watch: The wildlife viewing is best in all seasons. In winter you can see gulls, loons, and ducks from the pull off described above. In spring, woodland warblers and vireos abound in the hardwood forests. In summer, breeding birds are common in the woodlands, while fall brings early ducks and lots of migrating songbirds!

For more information:

Harrison Bay State Park web page

Bald Eagle nest camera web page

Submit your data to eBird and help us build a list of birds seen at this site



Be sure to check out our Safety Tips page for important information regarding viewing wildlife in these areas.