About the Site

Welcome! This site features hiking, biking, and other trail destinations in the Cumberland Mountains region and surrounding areas of Southwest Virginia, Northeast Tennessee, and Eastern Kentucky. Borrowing its name from the “high lonesome sound” of the bluegrass music borne out of the Cumberlands, this site aims to feature hiking destinations that have largely been overshadowed by the more popular and well-traveled trails of the Blue Ridge to the east. Trails in the Cumberlands are less traveled but are no less scenic, and this site hopes to both serve as a base of information for local residents wanting to see new parts of the area they call home and communicate that information to visitors who might be coming to the Cumberlands for the first time.

About the Hikes

This site will feature informational posts on the science of Appalachia, as well as informational posts on public lands in the region. Remaining posts are designed as trail guides to disseminate information on local hiking trails that may not exist beyond limited brochures or word-of-mouth info.  Trail distances in these posts are approximate and are based on GPS mapping and, when possible, pre-existing information from federal and state conservation agencies. All trail guides featured on this site are for educational use only and should not be used for backcountry navigation. Hike at your own risk and plan your trips carefully, using the best possible information from a variety of sources, including the managing agency overseeing each trail.

Are you affiliated with a regional tourism/economic development organization looking to share information on local trails? Go for it! A major goal of this site is to aid regional ecotourism development strategies by providing reliable information that is currently lacking on regional recreation assets. Accordingly, all information on this site is intended to be shared as publicly and freely as possible. Feel free to use the information on this site, as long as attribution and a link to the original post is provided. Contact Wally Smith (whs2q@uvawise.edu) for questions or additional info.

About the Authors

This website is maintained and managed by the Southwest Virginia Citizen Science Initiative (CSI), an initiative led by Dr. Walter Smith and students at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise and designed to develop products that simultaneously enhance science education and economic development goals in rural Appalachia. All of the content and opinions featured on this site are from the authors only and do not represent any other individual, organization, institution, or group.

Take a browse around the site and learn a bit about local trails in this region. Trail summaries are published in blog format periodically and are indexed by destination using the menus on the site’s header. Happy hiking!


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Good Morning,
    Hope you are having a wonderful week. My name is Jessica Howard and I am a representative for Letcher County Tourism in Letcher County, KY. I am in the process of advertising our Guided Tours (Hiking and Driving) and came upon your site. Your descriptions and pictures of the hiking trails are perfect.
    I wanted to see if I could link your site and use the information you give in your articles about Pine Mountain.
    Please let me know if I can share your information.
    Thank you and have a blessed day,
    Jessica E. Howard


    1. swvahiking says:

      Hi Jessica, thanks for getting in touch (and apologies for such a late response)! Absolutely feel free to link to or share any of the info on this page. Just let us know if you need any additional info, and thanks!


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