Beaver Creek Wilderness

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Beaver Creek Wilderness Map

View Guide with Map

Towering sandstone cliffs, natural arches and rippling streams are some of the special features that led to the designation of this 4,877-acre area as a wilderness in 1975. It is located on Stearns District of the Daniel Boone National Forest.

The wilderness provides visitors a place where they are free to explore nature's solitude and scenic beauty. No motorized or mechanized equipment is allowed. Learn more about what you can expect when visiting a wilderness.

The wilderness is remote and the terrain is rugged. Several trails occur throughout the area, but be prepared for strenuous hikes. Much of the area is nestled below spectacular sandstone cliffs. 

Send Your Photos

Make this page look nicer by submitting photos of your visit to Beaver Creek Wilderness. Learn more...

In keeping with the wilderness concept, signage is kept to a minimum. You should not expect trail signs or markers to guide you.

Primitive camping is permitted in the Beaver Creek Wilderness as long as you remain 300 feet away from any road or stream and out of site from any trail. Camping and firebuilding in rock shelters is prohibited.

Before becoming a wilderness, this area was settled as a small coal mining town during the early 1900s. Signs of the past remain visible with old roads, stone fencing, exotic shrubs and grave sites scattered throughout the area. Over time, nature is slowly erasing some of these signs that man left behind.

Note: Cell phone communications and emergency rescue services may be limited in the wilderness.

Photo of Beaver Creek during winter Photo of impressive cliffline in Beaver Creek Wilderness Photo of Beaver Creek in Fall

At a Glance

Fees None
Open Season: Open All Year
Usage: Light
The wilderness trails are developed for hiking only. Motorized vehicles are prohibited.  
Closest Towns: The northern part of the wilderness is closest to Somerset. The southern part of the wilderness is closest to Whitley City. 
Water: None
Restroom: None
Operated By: U.S. Forest Service
Information Center: Stearns Ranger District
3320 Hwy 27 North
Whitley City, KY 42653

General Information


The trails in the Beaver Creek Wilderness are not accessible. 


To Three Forks of Beaver Trailhead:
From Whitley City, take US 27 north 12.5 miles; turn right onto Bauer Road for 2.25 miles; turn left onto Forest Service Road 51 for .8 mile. The trailhead will be on your left.

From Somerset, take US 27 south for 13 miles; turn left onto Bauer Road for 2.25 miles; turn left onto Forest Service Road 51 for .8 mile. The trailhead will be on your left.  

General Notes:

Trash pick up is not available. Please pack out your trash. 

Topographic maps are recommended if you plan on exploring. USGS Quadrangle: Hail
Maps are available from USGS, Stearns Ranger District office and mail order


Parking is available at Three Forks of Beaver Trailhead, Bowman Ridge Trailhead, Swain Ridge Trailhead and Middle Ridge Trailhead.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information



Show detail SHOW