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A Wildlife Encounter and Tourism Destination

Countdown to Opening

Blaze A New Trail

Through the Cumberland Gap and near Daniel Boone’s legendary Wilderness Road is Boone’s Ridge: a family-friendly, safe, tourism destination that delivers a unique wildlife encounter and outdoor experience combined with diverse attractions and activities that deliver something for everyone. Located in the same area Boone made famous nearly 250 years ago, Boone’s Ridge will once again draw travelers to these magnificent wild lands—only this time instead of unexplored terrain, delighted visitors will find a collection of safe, comfortable amenities nestled in Kentucky’s Cumberland Mountains in the midst of abundant wildlife and beautiful landscapes.

Boone’s Ridge is owned and operated by the Appalachian Wildlife Foundation, a 501 (C)(3), non-profit organization.

See Revitalization In Progress

Boone’s Ridge will alter the economic and educational landscapes of Eastern Kentucky when this $56 million endeavor comes to life. It is set to open in summer 2023.

First Elk Calves of the Year 2019
Piebald Deer
Our Bears are Back
April 23, 2019
50 Elk
Elk Single File
April 5, 2019
March 28, 2019
March 26, 2019
March 21, 2019
March 19, 2019
March 7, 2019
February 28, 2019
February 26, 2019
February 18, 2019


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Our Wildlife

Tucked away in Kentucky’s Cumberland Mountains, Boone’s Ridge will host over 990,000 visitors a year from across the nation. Here the wildlife is abundant, and visitors will enjoy uncommon sights such as wild, free-ranging elk, rare birds, and other wildlife thriving in their natural habitat.

Our Wildlife


Elk are a tourism super-magnet, attracting crowds wherever viewing opportunities exist, and Kentucky is home to the largest wild elk population east of the Rocky Mountains.

Our Wildlife


Boone’s Ridge is home to over 260 species of birds, and is already listed as a “bird watching hotspot” by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the leading resource and community of birders. The site will be a favored destination amongst the over 60 million self-described “birders” in the US, as well as casual enthusiasts.

Our Wildlife

Black Bear

Black bears are regarded as the most popular wildlife species among tourists in the United States and are plentiful at Boone’s Ridge.

Our Wildlife

White-Tailed Deer

White-tailed deer can be seen in great numbers at Boone’s Ridge. Less tolerant of human proximity than elk, the deer will be observable year-round.

Our Wildlife


A robust population of Bobcats is present at Boone’s Ridge where they thrive in the backdrop of the Cumberland Mountains.

Experience Boone's Ridge

Combining plentiful wildlife and magnificent wild lands with first-class amenities and customer super-service, Boone’s Ridge will be an exceptional tourism experience from the indoor amenities to seemingly endless outdoor sights and sounds.

Experience Boone's Ridge

Visitor Center

  • Birders Hall
  • Artisans Hall
  • Restaurant
  • Theatre
  • Regional Museum
  • Wildlife and Natural History Museum
  • Giftshop
A state-of-the-art hall immersing visitors with high quality bird audio, interactive Cornell Lab of Ornithology tools, live nest cameras, and exhibits.
An interactive area where artists and artisans from around the country showcase their work, perform, and interact with guests.
A memorable dining experience will be delivered with 205 seats indoors and 100 outdoor seats available.
Viewing space for daily films and the venue for the year-round speakers and seminars series.
This museum will focus on delivering the unique and rich history of the region to the 92 percent of visitors that arrive from outside the state.
Learning space devoted to wildlife and natural history that will dazzle visitors with a large selection of taxidermy displays.
The gift shop will offer a wide selection of merchandise from regional crafts to high end optics and garments.

Experience Boone's Ridge


  • Trailblazer Park
  • Open Air Zoo
  • Petting Zoo
  • Accessible Nature Trail
  • Learning Zone
Walk through or take a rest among commemorative sculptures of wildlife and historical figures in the Trailblazers Park. The park will commemorate conservation leaders and supporters of Boone’s Ridge.
The zoo will feature North American wildlife species including raptors in a zoo design compatible with the magnificent setting.
The petting zoo offers an up-close family-friendly animal experience.
This paved walking trail is 1.5 to 2.5 miles in length and is wheelchair and baby stroller accessible. The trail allows visitors to view wildlife, enjoy the views, artwork and exhibits along the trail.
A two-acre area where visiting students can interact with nature and participate in hands-on wildlife habitat experiments.

Impact Beyond Boone's Ridge

By donating to Boone’s Ridge, you’re making a worthwhile investment in the economic development and recovery of a region with a well-documented and pervasive legacy of poverty and inadequate educational resources. Boone’s Ridge will bring opportunity for economic and educational development to this area of Eastern Kentucky.

Impact Beyond Boone's Ridge

Creating Jobs and Economic Activity

The economy of Eastern Kentucky has long been centered on the extraction and export of natural resources. Boone’s Ridge will prove the value in showcasing the bountiful wildlife and mountain landscapes.

The 990,000 Boone’s Ridge visitors each year will generate over $202 million in new spending annually, which will create 3,300 new jobs. On site 210 people will be employed with an average full-time wage and benefits package at $54,263, which is almost triple the individual median income in Bell County, Kentucky.

Impact Beyond Boone's Ridge

Furthering the Importance of Education in Eastern KY

Boone’s Ridge will implement a far-reaching and robust education program. This program will reach over 100,000 students annually, will include annual scholarships and education grants, and will provide financial support to bring school groups on site.

In partnership with the Cornell Lab of Ornithology we will bring Cornell instructors to the region to conduct teacher workshops.

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110 South Main Street
Corbin, KY 40701
(606) 523-1323