South Holston Tailwater Trails

Most of the South Holston Tailwater Trails started out being foot paths made by anglers seeking water access to fish in the trout-rich tailwaters. The footpaths were improved and are now trails that are well used not only by anglers but also by dog walkers and families. These trails are on the South Holston Dam Reservation, which is located about five miles south of Bristol, Tennessee.

Tailwater Trail is an easy 0.5 mile hike located on the east side of the South Fork Holston River, which is part of the South Holston Reservoir. This trail provides excellent opportunities to view wildlife, access stream fishing and view the weir. This trail is in close proximity to Emmet Trail, that can be combined for longer trail walks.

Bouton Trail is an easy 1.5 mile loop trail.

Emmett Trail is a 1.1 mile one way loop located at South Holston Lake. Wildlife observation can be experienced along this trail.

Osceala Island Loop Trail is in close proximity to Emmett and Tailwater trails that can be combined with Osceola for longer trail hikes. Amenities Include parking, restrooms, picnic tables and benches.

Some of the wildlife opportunities include views of tailwater and weir dam, wetland viewing opportunities and interpretive signage.

Visit TVA Trail's webpage for more information.


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Latitude: 36.31355 Longitude: -82.0646 Elevation: 2434 ft


Vertical Gain or Loss


Trail Distance

5.1 miles

Eco-Friendly Notes

TVA is a partner of Leave No Trace and requests that visitors follow Leave No Trace practices.

ADA Accessibility Notes

No ADA Accessibility Available

Pet Friendly Notes

Pets are welcome but must be kept on a leash no longer than 6-feet. TVA is a partner of Leave No Trace and requests that visitors follow Leave No Trace practices, including picking up after your pet.

How to Get There

From Johnson City, TN

Get on I-26 W / US-23 N from W State of Franklin Rd 
Take US-11E to TN-394 in Bristol. Take the Tennessee 394 exit from US-11E

Turn Right on TN-394 E (signs for Bluff City/Tennessee 394 E/Tennessee 390 S)

Turn right onto US-421S /Carl Moore Pkwy

Continue on State Hwy 2373. Drive to Holston View Dam Rd.

372 Holston View Dam Rd. Bristol, TN 37620,-82.109772/@36.5286337,-82.1155477,17z

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