On Cane Creek
Following TennGreen’s 2014 acquisition, the Crusher Hole has been managed by the State of Tennessee as a part of Fall Creek Falls State Park, one of Tennessee’s most visited state parks. In addition to being a popular spot for hiking, fishing, and swimming, the property contains a beautiful natural spring and more than 1,000 linear feet of Cane Creek, which has statewide significance due to its natural and scenic qualities. It is within the Bald Knob USGS Quadrangle, which contains 43 rare species, six of them endangered: the bluemask darter fish, the gray bat, the Indiana bat, little-wing pearlymussel, Cumberland pigtoe, and the wood lily.
Our Conservation Story
When the Crusher Hole at Cane Creek went up for auction in 2013, Janie and Ric Finch, two longtime supporters of TennGreen, knew that it had to move to the top of the organization's priority list. Given the property's rich biodiversity and scenic value, TennGreen went to the auction and purchased the land with funds from its Emergency Land Fund. After TennGreen purchased the Crusher Hole tract, it resold the land to the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), to be managed as a part of Fall Creek Falls State Park.
Cane Creek's Endangered Species
The blue mask darter fish is among the rarest of Tennessee’s endangered species, and the only place in the world it is found is in the Caney Fork River System, which runs through Virgin Falls SNA.
The gray bat was list as an endangered species in 1976 due to human disturbance, habitat loss and degradation, and cave commercialization.
The Indiana bat has been in decline for decades and was listed in 1967 as endangered due to the commercialization of caves, loss of summer habitat, and the spread of white-nose syndrome.
The little-wing pearlymussel has been on the decline for decades due to poor water quality and habitat conditions in the state of Tennessee. It was listed as endangered in 1988.
The Cumberland pigtoe has also been on the decline for quite some time in Tennessee due to poor water quality and habitat conditions. It was listed as endangered in 1994. It is important especially in Tennessee to conserve endangered mussel species, since our state has one of the highest rates of species diversity, containing approximately 130 of the roughly 300 known mussel species in the United States.
The wood lily is endangered in the state of Tennessee.
Highway 285, Spencer, TN
Lat: 35.755010, Long: -85.391010
From I-40: Take I-40 to Exit 288 at Cookeville, then head south on TN-111 S. At Spencer, turn left onto Highway 30, which becomes Highway 285. Crusher Hole is on the right.
From Chattanooga: Take U.S. Highway 27 North to state Highway 111 North toward Spencer, Tenn. In Spencer, take Highway 30 East about 6.5 miles and start looking for event signs directing visitors onto Highway 285.