White County

Buzzard’s Roost/Millikan’s Overlook

PROJECT PARTNERS The Conservation Fund, Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation

This 419-acre tract divided 16,000 acres of protected forest corridor from another 2,900 acres in one of the most beautiful vistas in Tennessee. TennGreen and The Conservation Fund partnered together to negotiate the sale of the land, raise funds for its purchase, and acquire it on behalf of Tennessee State Parks.

Have you ever stood on the edge of the precipice known as Buzzard’s Roost? That’s the best place to appreciate the uninterrupted view called Millikan’s Overlook, in Fall Creek Falls State Park. But if dizzying heights bother you, you can also view it from a platform deck along the scenic gorge drive in the middle of Fall Creek Falls State Park.

No description or photograph can accurately reveal its beauty–how far you can see; how blue the mountains are in the evening or how still and quiet it is there. As it has been for tens of thousands of years, so will it be tomorrow and for the next millennium, because of the work of TennGreen.

Fall Creek Falls State Park is Tennessee’s most visited state park, located on the Cumberland Plateau. It’s popularity and its name come from its 256-foot waterfall, the tallest waterfall in the Eastern United States. It’s also one of the largest, most rugged, and most beautiful parks in Tennessee.

The 419-acre tract was privately owned and split Fall Creek Falls State Park, dividing 16,000 acres from 2,900 acres that the state purchased in 1992.

The property was one of the state’s top land acquisitions priorities as an addition to the park. TennGreen negotiated a purchase price from the landowners and then contacted The Conservation Fund, a national non-profit organization, and requested their help to secure the property. The Conservation Fund subsequently purchased the property at the request of TennGreen.

The final steps to see this important land permanently protected and transferred to the State of Tennessee required that the State pay Fair Market Value for the land. TennGreen raised an additional $17,500 to cover the remaining costs from the purchase.

Now the vista at Buzzard’s Roost and Millikan’s Overlook is forever protected. The 419-acre hole in the middle of Tennessee’s most visited state park is no longer a hole on the map dividing two ends of the park, threatening one of the most photographed and scenic vistas in Tennessee.


“When TennGreen heard that 419 acres were for sale in the middle of the park, in the middle of dramatic Cane Creek Gorge, we stepped forward to help protect this property,”

John Sheahan, TennGreen’s first Chairman of the Board.