Home » Trip Schedule » Hiking


Our hiking trips can range in trail mileage, difficulty of the terrain, and distance from Nashville. One common denominator, however, is the beauty of the hills, overlooks, creeks, and waterfalls of Tennessee! Our trips are designed for a group of 10-12 people, and require no previous experience. Each trip is led by Outdoor Rec. Trip Coordinators who are experienced in hiking. Hiking boots are recommended for many of the hikes due to the rocky terrain.

Upcoming Trips

JUNE 11 (Saturday)
Cummins Falls and Burgess Falls State Parks, TN
Cost:  $24
Sign-up by: midnight on Thursday, June 9

Only 1 spot remains . . .


1. You must be part of VU and have an @vanderbilt.edu email address.

2.  Click HERE to sign up and pay on-line!


Pre-Trip MeetingWednesday, 6/8 at 5:00 pm in the Outdoor Rec. Center, 2600 Children’s Way.

Cummins Falls State Park is the newest in Tennessee’s great State Park system.  We plan to hike along the Blackburn Fork Creek to the waterfall and either back-track for the hike up and out.  Once we are at Cummins Falls, we will spend some time playing in the water.  Burgess Falls State Park is less than an hour from Cummins Falls and it has 3 large waterfalls on a 1.5 mile hike.  The final fall is the tallest, and the hike to the bottom is rewarded by a chance to get wet!  The pools may not be deep enough for swimming, but you will get cooled off.  Estimated trip duration: 8 am – 6 pm.


AUGUST 6 (Saturday)
North Chickamauga Creek State Natural Area, TN
Cost:  $26
Sign-up by: Friday, July 29


1. You must be part of VU and have an @vanderbilt.edu email address.

2.  Click HERE to sign up and pay on-line!


Pre-Trip Meeting:  Tuesday, 8/2 at 5:00 pm in the Outdoor Rec. Center, 2600 Children’s Way.

Spend the day hiking the 9 mile trail at beautiful North Chickamauga Creek.  The hiking is moderately difficult, with a few strenuous elevation changes.  Rewards on this hike include going under and on top of bluffs, and a swim in the creek before turning back.   Estimated trip duration:  7 am – 9 pm.



Date:  May 21 – 29 (Saturday – Sunday)

Location:  Yosemite National Park, CA

Cost: $595 + your airfare to and from Sacramento, CA
Registration Fee: $200 can be paid on-line, the rest can be paid in later months.

Sign-up by: Friday, March 18

The Summer adventures continue with the Outdoor Recreation Program and this years trip to Yosemite National Park, located in the high sierras of central California. Home to some of the most famous and captivating scenery in the world, we will have a chance to see and explore the impressive granite cliffs and domes, rushing waterfalls, alpine lakes and giant sequoia trees. This trip will include a 4-day backpacking trip and 2.5 days of day hiking. The elevation in the park ranges from around 3,000 feet to 13,000 feet so participants need to be in good shape for this trip. We will mostly be hiking from around 4,000 feet to 7,000 feet in elevation and 6 – 11 miles per day. This will be a trip to remember!

Cost includes:   Van transportation (from / to Sacramento Airport), wilderness permits, camping, entrance and other fees, in-camp food, and group equipment.

Click on this:  Yosemite web for a colorful PDF with more info!



The Colorado Adventure: Whitewater Rafting, Climbing, and Hiking 14-ers!


Dates: Aug 6-14, 2016 (Saturday – Sunday)

Locations: Colorado: Rocky Mountain National Park, Pikes Peak, the Royal Gorge, Mt. Elbert, Garden of the Gods, Breckenridge, and Jurassic Park!

Cost: $665 + your own airfare to Denver Airport

Sign up by:

As of 3/31:  This trip is full. E-mail  to outdoorrec@vanderbilt.edu to get on the waiting list.

Sign up by: midnight by March 18

This summer, get ready to cross some items off your bucket list! We will meet at Denver International Airport and road trip to experience everything Colorado has to offer. We will start in the famous Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) and hike to hidden waterfalls and glacier lakes before doing some rock climbing at Jurassic Park. Then we’re off to hike some 14ers, mountains that are over 14,000ft. To give you some perspective Clingmans Dome, the tallest Mountain in Tennessee, is 6,644ft high. We will hike over two times that high on Pikes Peak (14,114ft) and Mt. Elbert (14,439ft), the tallest mountain in Colorado! To split up these two big ascents we are going to do some whitewater rafting through the   Royal Gorge. There we will experience the Arkansas River’s big class IV and V rapids.  A hike through Garden of the Gods will be the perfect icing on the cake before heading back to Denver. The majority of this trip will be intermediate day hiking (9-19 miles per hike with elevation) with the addition of rafting and climbing. It’s designed to be a tough but extremely rewarding adventure for experienced hikers, but we will allow enthusiastic beginners to join us on the excursion.


Everyone who goes must be in good physical shape by the time we leave.

Participants are expected to attend one of two all day sessions on a Saturday in 2016.  This will involve a Pre-Colorado Training Hike and a meeting following the hike.  Expected duration:  7:30 am to 5:00 pm, but specific dates are yet to be determined.  For your flight to DEN, arrive no later than 2 pm MST on 8/6 and leave no earlier than 9 am MST on 8/14.

Pre-Trip Meeting: Thursday, March 24 at 6:00 PM Conference Room, Outdoor Rec. Center.

There will most likely be another Pre-trip meeting, TBA in April or May 2016


Payment Information:

2/26/16 Registration fee: $200
3/18/16 Second payment: $220
4/8/16 Last Payment: $245

Cost includes: van transportation to/from Denver airport, all in-camp food, hotel at the end of the trip, group equipment, permits, whitewater rafting, camping and entrance fees.

> Space is limited to the first 10 people that sign up, and spots are expected to go quickly


Trip Information


Most trips are designed for a small group of people (10-12), and many of the trips require no previous experience. The fee for each trip covers the activity, transportation, in-camp food, camping fees, and group equipment. For more information, look for flyers around campus or stop by the Outdoor Recreation Center (at 2600 Children’s Way and behind the new Vanderbilt Recreation and Wellness Center) during ORC rental hours. This is also where the Pre-Trip Meeting takes place. Trips are open to all VU students, faculty, staff, and VRWC members. Alcohol is not permitted on any trip.