April 22, 2020 Update – The parking lot is now accessible and you can hike the trails, but areas of the trails near the lake and the creeks are still very wet and sloppy.

April 20, 2020 – Once again the parking lot for our trails at the Yates Lake Forever Wild location is flooded and inaccessible to the public. With the deluge of rain that we received in the area on Sunday, the operators at Martin Dam had to open multiple gates, resulting in flooding on parts of Yates Lake. Please check back here for updates on the status of the John B. Scott Forever Wild trail and the Cherokee Ridge Dam Railroad Trail. We will update this post when the trails are accessible and ready for hikers.


CRATA news concerning COVID-19 requirements – Although all of the CRATA trails remain open for hiking, the public must follow all requirements of the Alabama Emergency State Health Order when visiting and using the facilities at all of our trail locations. Click here to read the health order as posted by the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. 

During this period that we are all under the State Health Order, please make good choices while hiking our trails and follow all of the rules for grouping and social distancing. No more than 9 people can hike as a group and each group must maintain a distance of 6 feet between each hiker on the trail. We are asking the public to be even more diligent and considerate when climbing the fire tower at our Smith Mountain location. We are now limiting the number of people in the tower cab at the same time to 4, instead of the normal 10. Also, we ask that only one group of people be on the tower at one time, so that we eliminate people passing each other on the narrow stairway.

Please do your part in reducing the spread of the COVID-19 virus and also avoid being fined for failure to comply with the health order. We have been notified that enforcement officers will be checking our trail locations and enforcing the order.