Located on Percy Priest Lake, Cook Day Use Area is a great place for swimming, picnics, and more. When you enter the area you will first have to stop and pay an entrance fee. It is 5 dollars per day for a car load. If you walk or bike in the fee is 2 dollars. If you drive straight after entering you will enter the picnic and Beach area.
This spot features 12 picnic areas with tables and grills. There are tons of mature trees here so you can enjoy lots of shade. The lake surrounds the whole area so the views are fantastic no matter where you choose to sit. There is also a beach for lake swimming. Make sure you equip the kids with those aqua shoes. Lake swimming is great but you never know what might be on the bottom. Protect those little feet and have lots of swimming fun! The beach area is not huge but there is still ample room for sandcastles and sunbathing ( do people still sunbathe? )
A small play scape is located here. It’s fairly new and in great condition. There are benches throughout this area for resting, watching, or duck feeding. There is a bathroom facility between the two picnic areas. It is surprisingly clean and well maintained. ( I don’t expect much from park bathrooms. Years of bad experiences.) There is also a water fountain.
If you turn left after entering the day use area , you will head toward the pavilion areas. There are two picnic shelters. The first is directly across from the beach. There is a walking trail to access the beach without driving to it.
You’ll find lots of parking in this area, gorgeous views of the lake and a boat launch. There is a paved trail from this parking area to shelter #1.This shelter is huge. It has at least 8 picnic tables and two large grills. It is also equipped with lighting for night use. There is a large green space next to it with a big playscape. Shelter #1 is not directly on the lake.
If you continue past the entrance for shelter #1, you will enter the parking area for shelter #2. If I was having a big event I would probably park here for either shelter. It would be much less walking. Shelter #2 is right on the lake. It is smaller than shelter #1. It holds 4 tables.
There are at least 10 additional separate picnic areas near this shelter. Each has a table and grill.
You can also find a walking trail between these two shelter areas. The Three Hickories Nature Trail is 1.6 miles long.
Family Fun Facts
Hours : 6AM – 8PM
Cost : $5 per car load
Rachel is a Middle Tennessee native, born and raised in the Nashville area and having lived in Hendersonville, Murfreesboro, and Mount Juliet. She is mom to 3, step mom to 4 and Grandma to one (so far!)