Tarr Ridge to First Overlook

Map of Tarr Ridge Hike to the First Overlook

Map of Tarr Ridge Hike to the First Overlook

Elevation profile of Tarr Ridge Hike to the First Overlook

Elevation profile of Tarr Ridge Hike to the First Overlook

Overview. Starting from the trailhead at the northern entrance to Red River Gorge Geological Area on Tarr Ridge Road (KY-77), this short hike provides an awesome view of the gorge along with a grand variety of fungus along the trail. With plenty of backcountry campsites along the way and additional viewpoints further out, this is a great place to explore.

Route Type | Out and Back
Total Distance | 1.7 miles
Overall Difficulty | Easy
*this trail is unmarked

Trailhead. The trailhead can be found on the east side of Tarr Ridge Road (KY-77). There are no facilities, but two signs clearly mark this parking lot as the entrance to Red River Gorge Geological Area. [map - waiting for Google approval]

Trail navigation. This trail is unmarked, but well-traveled. To begin the hike, go past the Red River Gorge Geological Area sign and head south. There are a number of side trails and campsites that can lead you astray, so match your GPS tracking app’s map to the map above. At 6/10th of a mile, you’ll reach an intersection. Continue right to follow this hike to the first viewpoint. Going left will lead you out to three additional viewpoints along the ridge. As you near the overlook, you’ll descend and vegetation is a bit overgrown at times. Keep going and you’ll come to a nice area to take in the views and relax. Retrace your steps to return to the trailhead.

CAUTION - Cliffs. Be careful to avoid getting too close the edge of cliffs, as this is the leading cause of serious injury and death when hiking in Red River Gorge.

CAUTION - Poisonous snakes. While the gorge is within the range of timber rattlesnakes, copperheads are the most common poisonous snake encountered. Stay alert on the trail, as snakes are commonly found taking in the warmth of the trail. Give them a wide berth or wait for them to move off the trail.

CAUTION - Bears. Black bears are growing in number throughout Daniel Boone National Forest. Be sure to follow bear safety precautions. [Be Bear Aware by US Forest Service]