Explore the most popular Forest trails near Knoxville with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great loop. Well maintained paths. The only other people here were mountain bikers but they were all very polite. The sinkhole was unexpected but cool. Nice variety of terrain.

Loop at Ijams connecting several short trails. Abundant wildflowers, e.g. bloodroot, early blossoms of trillium, daffodils. Scenic overlooks of the river valley and rock quarries. Several areas for rock climbing. Some child friendly areas. Bat caves are closed by iron gates, but you can climb to them and peer inside.

I’ve been on several hikes that have far better natural aesthetic qualities, however, Ijams deserves a huge five star “thumbs up” for its proximity to an urban area. Great place for people to learn and value their natural world! Wonderful educational programs about conservation, e.g. gardening, birding, hikes. *****

ok lots of people enjoying the day

road biking
washed out
11 days ago

One of the tunnels is flooded and closed off. Still a good bike trail!

hiking
muddy
14 days ago

We’ve had LOTS of rain so the trail hasn’t had time to dry, very muddy. There were several Heron in the lake which was amazing to see. There was lots of road noise around the lake area. Still a very nice trail.

nature trips
20 days ago

Good place

mountain biking
muddy
21 days ago

I would have given this trail 5 stars if part of the trail alongside the Tennessee River was not closed due to a mud or rock slide. Otherwise it is a great exercise trail as it covers an elevation of more than 200 ft. It also affords great views of the city skyline from the top of the bluff.

Really quaint little walking area. Some of it is paved and some is a mulch pathway, but you can choose many routes to walk along. The creek and bridges are really fun for toddlers- definitely a good toddler “trail.”

Not bad crowded nice day for a walk

walking
2 months ago

Clean, well maintained greenway. Much of it recently resurfaced.

walking
2 months ago

Nice, paved trail with good river views.

Nice, paved trail. Interesting Civil War history at the informational sign.

Good short little trail. Great signage with the area's link to history and civil war.

Great short loop with a few steep points. Nice views of GSMNP and quarry from above. Get pretty slick after heavy rains. Easy access from parking, Ijams and downtown, but still feels secluded and peaceful.

Really fun trial close to downtown. The expert trail was a little overgrown and had some fallen trees that made navigating and staying on trail difficult at times. Overall had a good time and will definitely be back.

Nice trail. Easy to find and follow the trail. We went on a weekend where there happened to be a 5k run so there were far too many people. Not a strenuous hike for sure. Follows the river in spots and has a boardwalk past a cave. That was pretty neat to see. Visitors center and rescued birds were very nice. I’d recommend for a quick walk in the woods.

Nice trail. We went the “back way” on the loop, going clockwise. It was more difficult that way—the uphill section is quite steep for about a quarter of a mile. I can see that coming the other direction would have been an easier climb. But the scenery was nice, and my kids all seemed to enjoy it.

hiking
4 months ago

Really enjoyed this trail. Saw raccoon and snake. Nice hike

Wonderful short hike! Took my 2 & 5 year old. Was a little challenging for the 2 yo. Had to carry her some. Definitely need good shoes. The majority is uphill and downhill. Slippery especially with leaves this time of year. (November)
The cemetary was really neat. Theh granddaughter of a couple people buried there had left some info about them.
The outlooks were very pretty.
Not too crowded.
Saw about 5 couples so not too crowded.
If you wanted to continue you could always do the other trails once you loop around. There's tons to explore around there.

Great quick way to get outside with the family close to home!

hiking
4 months ago

Sharp’s Ridge Loop Trail is a roughly 4 mile moderate loop hike located inside the 640 loop in North Knoxville. It is convenient for a short morning or afternoon hike when time is limited and provides a few nice vistas looking south toward downtown and the Smoky Mountains beyond. The canopy of trees can be thick in the non-winter months which can be a nice respite on hot summer days. The only drawback to the trail is that it intermingles with the mountain back trail that parallels it and due to poor marking, can be difficult to know which one your actually on and therefore dangerous. I recommend hiking it at non-peak times to minimize this danger. I’ve also been told it is a good hike in wet conditions because of how well it drains after heavy rains.

I agree that this is a neat trail for being pretty much right in Knoxville. The river walk and cave are pretty neat. My daughter and I also went up the tower trail a ways-nice spot to sit and take in the view. Will probably walk it again sometime since it’s so close.

Great trail, and park. Friendly people!

Did the river walk trail as a family. Great trail for all levels especially younger kids. My six year old loved it

nature trips
5 months ago

Ratings are all relative :) I gave this a 5 as this seems perfect when you think about a trail that is in a city. I’m not from the area so this was the first time I had checked out this area. This particular trail was pretty great. It was diverse in the type of scenery...from river views to rocks to seeing a cave to a pond etc. Definitely an easy path. I only came across a couple groups of people which was nice as well. I went at 6 pm on a Wed night though. I bet it gets crowded on the weekends though. I would go again and frequent often if I lived in Knox.

Ps. You can make this trail a bit longer by veering off the path periodically on the other side trails.

This also is more along the lines of an easy trail vs moderate.

For a hike in a city this is as good as it gets. I wish I had access to something like this in IL. I agree with the person that reviewed this trail the same day as me (10/2/18). I went in the evening and while more people were there most of the trail was quiet...so think they were on other trails or right by the quarry.

I did record my distance and I hit 2 miles but I did double track certain areas going back for pics etc after people would leave so it is definitely less than 2 if you don’t double back.

It has an incline for most of the mountain side of the quarry. Only recommendation is to get there with sufficient time to do the trail at the pace you want before dark. I had to jog in spots to make it through before dark when the gates close :)

Oh and I also wish I had my hiking boots instead of gym tennis shoes, but I didn’t pack them this trip.

If I lived here, I would go here frequently. The pics do not do it justice.

This is a 1.1 mile hike (not 2 miles like AllTrails claims). It is more easy than moderate- the slight ups and downs and twists and turns keep it fun. Bringing hiking poles would be a good idea to help steady yourself on the ups & downs as the ground is damp mud with leaves on it and not ideal footing. I was glad to have brought one of my poles since I was baby wearing as well.

Some beautiful sights and wildlife. We saw some big spiders and a turtle on the trail! We ran into our share of cobwebs, but none were giant or full of spiders so it wasn’t even that annoying actually. There were some mosquitos towards the 0.75-1.0 mile range but that’s about it. My dog did this easily as well (she’s an experienced hiker though).

We hiked at 11am on a Tuesday in October and were the only ones out there. It was very peaceful and a lot of history to be learned here.

The cemetery was especially interesting because a living family member posted 2 photo frames with the deceased persons information and stories on them along with flowers. It was very neat to read about the family and learn about what happened and their struggles ages ago.

I will definitely be back- this is a perfect short hike that isn’t too easy or too difficult.

walking
5 months ago

Only walked up to quarry and part way around it as it was greeting dark and I still had to walk back to my hotel (not from the area). The area around the quarry was pretty overall. The walk to the quarry from downtown was nice except the last .3 mile or so as there isn’t a sidewalk.

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