Obed Wild & Scenic River


The Obed Wild and Scenic River is located in Morgan and Cumberland Counties in East Tennessee on the Cumberland Plateau. The park includes parts of the Obed River, Clear Creek, Daddys Creek and the Emory River. Over 45 miles of creeks and rivers are included in the wild and scenic river area. These waterways have cut rugged gorges with bluffs as high as 500 feet above the whitewater in the streams. Outdoor recreation such as whitewater boating, rock climbing, hiking and fishing are popular seasonal activities in the Obed.

The history of the Obed River traces back many centuries. Even so, the scenery still looks much the same as it did before America became a nation.

The Obed Wild and Scenic River has many natural treasures. Wildlife and plant life are abundant. Visitors may gaze upon a red-shouldered hawk flying above the Lilly Bluff Overlook. They may also take a walk down to the Boulder Field and come across a blossoming red trillium wildflower. Or they might cast their fishing line on Clear Creek and reel in a fiesty smallmouth bass.


Seasonality / Weather

The Obed Wild and Scenic River sees a variety of weather patterns throughout each year. Spring and Winter are usually the best times to paddle on the river, as increased water levels during those seasons are common. Flooding can occur with several consecutive days of precipitation, however. Summers are generally hot and humid, resulting in lower water levels. Temperatures during the summer can often reach over 90 degrees. Winter water levels are generally navigable, and winter temperatures can drop below 30 degrees. Visitors are advised to wear comfortable clothing for each season and for possible extremes in temperature and climate.

The best times of the year for river paddling on the Obed occur during the spring (when precipitation increases) and in late fall/early winter (when cold rains provide continuous rapids).



The Obed Wild and Scenic River Visitor Center is located at 208 North Maiden Street in downtown Wartburg, Tennessee.