Snooper’s Rock and the Tennessee River

Published: 12/21/15 4:37 PM in Local, North America, Travel.

One of the most alluring qualities about Chattanooga, Tennessee is the city’s proximity to so many outdoor activities. The entire city is nestled between Lookout Mountain, which makes up the southwest portion of the Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians, and Signal Mountain, a section of Walden Ridge. Running through the middle of Chattanooga is the Tennessee River which cuts directly through the heart of downtown. The variety of geographic features allows residents and visitors to easily experience an equally diverse amount of outdoor activities from hiking, whitewater rafting, rock climbing, and boating down the river.

After Kevin, Alicia, and I enjoyed the thrilling experience of whitewater rafting the Ocoee River, we spent our remaining morning in Chattanooga hiking to the stunning overlook called Snooper’s Rock. After seeing the view from this point online, we knew we had to see it for ourselves as soon as we had the opportunity.

The view of the Tennessee River from Snooper's Rock in Chattanooga.

Alicia Doroteo and Kevin Banogon sit and enjoy the scenic view from Snooper's Rock in Chattanooga, Tennessee,

The Tennessee River turns and bends on it's way to Chattanooga as seen from Snooper's Rock.

Kevin Banogon and Alicia Doroteo sit on the edge of Snooper's Rock as they view the Tennessee River.

The View from Snooper’s Rock

As soon as you emerge from the trees onto the literal rock named Snooper’s Rock, a spectacular view is immediately presented before you. Before you is the panoramic view of the Tennessee River as it cuts a 1,000-foot gorge through the Cumberland Plateau on its way to Chattanooga. The horseshoe bend the river makes around Elder Mountain gives visitors the ability to see down the river in both directions as it twists and turns through the landscape.

The view is well worth the full hike along the Tennessee River Gorge, but if you are not up for the trek, the spot is also easily reachable by car. There is a small parking lot close to the overlook that allows visitors to make a much short walk of about 5 minutes to enjoy the view.

Since we had a very limited amount of time the morning we visited Snooper’s Rock, we were not able to do the hike. Instead, we parked nearby, enjoyed the view, and did a little hiking into the surrounding Prentice Cooper State Forest before returning to our cars to head back down to Atlanta.

Meredith Lambert Banogon and Kevin Banogon laugh in the sky on Snooper's Rock in Chattanooga.

The Tennessee River seen from Snooper's Rock as it flows to Chattanooga.

Alicia Doroteo and Meredith Lambert Banogon pose on Snooper's Rock outside of Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Kevin Banogon hangs his feet off the edge of Snooper's Rock facing the Tennessee River.

The Beauty of the Tennessee River

The Tennessee River is a tributary of the Ohio River that runs approximately 652 miles from southwest Kentucky, down through western Tennessee, continuing through northern Alabama, and reentering Tennessee to its terminus in Knoxville. Although it was once popularly called the Cherokee River due to the amount of Cherokee territory located on its banks, in the late 18th century, the river became known as the Tennessee River from the Cherokee village Tanasi.

The river has always served as a major highway to transport goods and explorers through the history of the area. In fact, many major cities are located on its shores due to the busy ports that were established along the river’s course. Throughout history, many writers and songwriters have used their experiences and memories along this river as inspiration causing it to be forever memorialized within our modern culture.

From Snooper’s Rock, you are able to get a new perspective of the winding river. The jaw-dropping view allows visitors to get a sense of the scale this force of nature possesses, one that is not possible from the river bank.

Alicia Doroteo and Kevin Banogon jump in the air on top of Snooper's Rock in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Kevin Banogon, Alicia Doroteo, and Meredith Lambert Banogon pose on Snooper's Rock in front of the spectacular view.

Meredith Lambert Banogon and Alicia Doroteo look out at the view from Snooper's Rock.

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