How to Hike the Burnt Cabin Cliff Trail at Lake Tenkiller


We’re sharing all the details, so you know what to expect hiking the Burnt Cabin Cliff trail at Lake Tenkiller. We also share how to kayak or boat to the cliffs if you don’t want to hike.

We live to find spectacular day-hikes close to home in northeast Oklahoma. We enjoy finding trails close to the water and tucked away in rocks. That is precisely what we found while hiking the Burnt Cabin Cliff trail at Lake Tenkiller.

Hiking Burnt Cabin Cliff Trail at Lake Tenkiller


Located near the Burnt Cabin Marina, the Burnt Cabin Cliff trail wanders through the oak trees along an old dirt road that jets out onto a peninsula next to the lake. Towards the end of the peninsula is where the beautiful rocky cliffs are.

You can also kayak or boat to this point if you don’t want to hike.

The trailhead is not marked. The trail is located across from the Burnt Cabin Marina along the east side of the boat launch. There is a little scrapyard area — head past the scrapyard and follow the dirt road.

This is an easy trail to hike. There are no big hills to climb, and the route is around 2.2 miles round trip (according to AllTrails).

There was some trash along the trail. Bring a bag to pick up a little trash if you feel inclined. Always practice Leave No Trace.

Leave No Trace Tips While Hiking

  • Dispose of human waste and trash property
  • Leave natural things found alone
  • Respect wildlife and watch wildlife from a safe distance
  • Be considerate of other people recreating in the area
  • Pack out all trash and waste
  • Be quiet and enjoy nature
  • Be respectful of the land
  • Acknowledge Native American territories and tribal lands

Best Time To Visit Burnt Cabin Cliff Trail


Since Oklahoma has mild winters, visitors can hike this trail year-round.

The best time to hike is in the spring (April) through late fall (October) to see all the foliage. Fall is particularly a nice time to hike and take photos in Oklahoma.

Depending on the time of year hiking the trail, you may encounter mud. There was a little mud when we hiked in October.

Burnt Cabin Cliff Trail Details

  • Trail Distance: 2.2 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 144.4 feet
  • Difficulty: Easy

Is there a bathroom close by the trail? Yes, at Burnt Cabin Marina.

Is the trail on the AllTrails App? Yes, download the Burnt Cabin Cliff hike.

Is there cell phone reception? Cell phone reception is hit-and-miss driving to the area, but there is some reception.

Epic Views

Enjoying the views on the east side of the peninsula

The emerald, blue water against dramatic cliffs is quite the surprise and makes for the perfect morning or afternoon hike.

If you’re looking for a fantastic day hike with rocks and a lake as the backdrop, then this is your trail.

How to Kayak (or Boat) to the Cliffs if You Don’t Want to Hike

It is easy to kayak or boat to the cliffs at Lake Tenkiller if you don’t want to hike here.

Launch your vessel from the Burnt Cabin Marina, and head to the left when you’re facing the lake. Paddle or boat around the peninsula, and you’ll get to the rocks.

It took us about two hours to paddle from the Burnt Cabin Marina to the cliffs and back. We swam near the rocks for a little before heading back.

Lake Tenkiller is a great place to paddle in Oklahoma when the weather is warm.

Have Fun Out There

Hiking the Burnt Cabin Cliff Trail

We hope you enjoy this awesome day-hike or boating adventure to the cliffs at Lake Tenkiller.

It makes for the perfect day trip to get away from the city and reinvigorate yourself in nature.

More Oklahoma Adventures:

27 Easy Road Trips From Tulsa

Why Quartz Mountain State Park Is One of Our Favorite State Parks in Oklahoma

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Ashlee Fechino

Ashlee Fechino is an outdoor recreation and travel writer sharing the best-kept secrets that aren’t in your typical guidebook. Her goal is to inspire people to travel with a sense of adventure by sharing hidden gems across the U.S. and beyond. She is married to an expat Argentine, Pablo. They camp in their Aliner often and love wandering the world. Follow their latest adventures on Instagram @thehappinessfxn.


  1. Juli on December 27, 2021 at 9:08 am

    Looks and sounds like a lovely place to hike. It is always a favorite or mine to hike along water. Also I got some Oboz hiking boots and low top hiking shoes this year and they are my favs. Super comfortable and stable fit! Hike on Ashlee and Pablo!

    • Ashlee Fechino on December 28, 2021 at 3:04 pm

      Hi Juli! Thanks for stopping by! Hiking to the cliffs at Lake Tenkiller is awesome. Glad you love your Oboz hiking boots too!!

  2. Cristina Sala on November 10, 2021 at 3:16 pm

    Gracias Ashlee y Pablo por permitirme verlos tan hermosos uatedes y la belleza del lugar .
    Realmente al solamente ver las fotos respiro aire puro, naturaleza incomparable.
    los abrazo con mi corazon

  3. Burt Randall on November 4, 2021 at 6:23 pm

    Thanks, Ashlee & Pablo for writing this amazing article about Oklahoma.

    THANKS !!

    • Ashlee Fechino on November 5, 2021 at 8:38 pm

      Hey Uncle Burt! Thank you for reading and commenting. We love seeing your name come across our comments!