Note: While this is a rural part of Tennessee, this is an easy location to find. Your GPS will be able to find this location. It will show as being located in Crab Orchard or Rockwood. This place is roughly 4.5 miles from the I-40 exit (329).
Directions: From Crossville travel East towards Knoxville on I-40. Exit at the Crab Orchard exit (329). Turn left off the exit ramp and go to the intersection of U.S. Highway 70. Turn right. The parking area will be on your right.
From Knoxville go west towards Nashville on I-40 and exit at Crab Orchard (329). From Crab Orchard exit, turn right onto U.S. Highway 70 going east. The highway takes you straight to Ozone Falls. It will be on your right.
What You Need to Know Upfront:
- Good, waterproof hiking boots are a must. It’s very slick and the way down is very steep with mostly large boulders.
- Dogs are allowed on a leash, but it’s best to leave pets and younger kids at home. Again, the trail is very steep and slick.
- Parking is available. It is right off the road though so easy to pass up. Just keep your eyes open for the ‘Ozone Falls’ signs. It’s roughly 4.5 miles from exit 329 on I-40. (For reference, Knoxville is exit 383, Cookeville is exit 286, Nashville is exit 213)
- You can view at the top or hike down to the bottom. The trail leading to the top is very easy and short. The trail down is more difficult and can be found alongside the road near the parking area. (Look for the cleared wooded path – this can be confusing, but you will find it!)
- Hunting, fishing and camping are not allowed.
- This is a great swimming spot, but the water is pretty chilly and the water cascade is very strong.
- It’s located near I-40 so it’s a great pit stop.
- You will get wet due to all of the mist so keep cameras and phones in an air-tight container.
- And if you aren’t local, just so you know there are several other waterfalls in Tennessee you will want to see.
Ozone Falls plunges 110 feet over a sandstone cap rock into a deep, rock-strewn pool. An impressive rock house “amphitheater” that was created over geologic time by wind, water, freeze/thaw, and erosion provides the backdrop for the falls. Because of its picturesque beauty and easy access, Ozone Falls was selected for filming scenes for the movie “Jungle Book.” Lost Creek Falls was also utilized as a shot location!
The stream contains many huge boulders, some the size of houses, and many small placid pools. A rugged ¾-mile trail begins along the bluff near the falls and then descends into the gorge passing a small rock house called Gamblers Den.
Ozone Falls is situated on the eastern edge of the Crab Orchard Mountains on the Cumberland Plateau. Legend has it that the area was named “Ozone” because of the “stimulating quality of the air” created by the mist that is generated after the long plunge of the water. In the 1800s, grist and sawmills were built above the falls. The last one was washed over the falls during a spring flood in 1900.
Please note: Most of the waterfalls and hiking trails we feature on this site are located in rural Tennessee. Trails can be slick due to water and very tight due to erosion. Bluffs can be extremely steep. For the most part, there are no safety fences or ropes. Vegetation can be thick during the spring and summer months so the trails can be hidden. Know where you are by utilizing apps such as All Trails that track with you. These apps will note where the trails are so you can stay on the path. Pack food and water no matter how long you plan on staying. Leave only footprints – no trash. Know your limits. Physically, these places can take a lot of work to get to. Sunscreen and bug spray are a must. Be safe. Stay alert. And enjoy.
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