NPS Fort Donelson National Battlefield
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  • We welcome you to Fort Donelson National Battlefield!

    The National Park Service welcomes you to Fort Donelson National Battlefield. This park preserves precious resources associated with the February, 1862, Campaign for Forts Heiman, Henry, and Donelson. The Confederate surrender at Fort Donelson, on Sunday, February 16, 1862, opened the way for the Union Army and Navy to penetrate into the Confederacy, with Clarksville and Nashville, Tennessee, falling into Union hands quickly. The Union victories at these forts were among the North's first victories...and resulted in national fame for Ulysses S. Grant.

    Fort Donelson is one mile west of Dover, Tenn., and three miles east of Land Between the Lakes on U.S. 79. The visitor center is open from 8 am to 4:30 pm daily. It is closed Thanksgiving Day, December 25, and January 1. Park tour road hours change seasonally, see park website for current information and closures.

    Trails  Fort Donelson has two principle trails: the three-mile River Circle Trail and the four-mile Donelson Trail. Both trails begin and end at the visitor center. Guides to the natural and historical features along the trails are available.

    Please remain on the trails. Be alert for poison ivy, poisonous snakes, ticks, stinging insects, and spider webs. Do not disturb or remove any vegetation. Be prepared for strenuous walking in some areas. Service animals are welcome.

    Regulations  Build fires only in the picnic area (grills only). Pets must always be physically restrained and are not allowed in buildings. Obey traffic signs. Hunting is prohibited. For firearms laws and policies see the park website. Picnic in designated areas only. Relic hunting and/or use of metal detectors is prohibited. And please don't walk on earthworks.

    For Your Safety  Hikers using park roads should walk facing traffic and bikes should ride in the direction of traffic in single file. Drivers should observe speed limits and park only in pull-offs. Keep close watch over your children . Use caution when near the river and on trail bridges, which can be slippery. Do not walk or stand on rock walls, cannon, or earthen mounds. Be alert to uneven ground surfaces.

    Fort Donelson is one of over 400 parks in the National Park System. To learn about parks and National Park Service programs in America's communities, visit 

    When you are ready to begin your tour, please click on "KEYPAD" below, and, on that keypad, click "1".