Cedars of Lebanon State Park, State Forest, and State Natural Area
Site Directions: From I-40, take exit 238 and travel south on US 231 and turn left into the park in 6.5 miles. The park office is on your right in 0.3 miles. On US 231, a right hand turn opposite the State Park entrance leads to the State Forest lands.
Lat-Long: 36.093833, -86.335509, intersection of US 231 and park entrance
Hours: 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
Seasonality: year round
Site Description: The area of Cedars of Lebanon is designated as part State Park, part State Natural Area, and part State Forest. Each area has different resources and access. The majority of the Cedars of Lebanon area is forested with the eastern red cedar being the dominant tree species, which is abundant on very poor soils. The soil is very shallow in this area and exposed rock is common. These areas historically were subject to regular disturbance via fire and, at times, heavy grazing. The loss of these disturbances has caused extensive reforestation and loss of cedar glade habitats. Cedar glades support several rare and endangered plants that only occur in Wilson and neighboring counties in middle Tennessee.
Areas of mature hardwood forests provide nice hikes via trail systems within the State Park. Hidden Springs trail is an easy 5 mile, mostly flat, hike loops though hardwood forests and some cedar glades. A "hidden spring" is found about halfway through the loop.
Wildlife to Watch: Lark Sparrows were once common in this area, but with lack of disturbance to the forest and extensive regeneration of forests, they have been nearly extirpated. A few Lark Sparrows can be found in State Forest on the west side of US 231. Look for open areas with exposed rock and tufts of grass. They can be found in these areas with some luck in spring. Prairie Warbler and Summer Tanagers can be found along the main gravel road within State Forest lands. In mature hardwood forests, visitors can expect to find common woodland birds including White-breasted Nuthatch, Downy Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker, and Carolina Chickadee year round. In summer, Wood Thrush, Kentucky Warbler, and Black-and-white Warblers, among others, can be found. Wild Turkey are present, as are White-tailed Deer.
For more information:
State Park web page
Submit your data to eBird and help us build a list of birds seen at this site
Be sure to check out our Safety Tips page for important information regarding viewing wildlife in these areas.