Last Updated on Monday, 01 February 2010 18:38 Monday, 01 February 2010 18:30
Gnarled old cedars, limestone outcrops, fresh water springs and spectacular views of the Tennessee River contribute to the unique hiking experience that is Lady's Bluff, a TVA Small Wild Area. Located in Perry County, when you reach the far point of the trail, you will see an incredible view of the river and Decatur County.
A foot trail winds through a typical upland forest, following the Lick Creek Embayment out to the main body of the Tennessee River and then loops to the top of Lady's Bluff. On top of the bluff, you can stand among gnarled old cedars and see National Migratory Wildlife Refuge on the opposite bank. In mid-October, this whole area becomes a landing strip for thousands of migrating ducks and geese making their annual visit to the refuge. The Tennessee River below Lady's Bluff was once known as the "narrows." As you watch one barge stop downstream while another passes through the strait, it should be easy to see how this portion of the river got its name. Two barges cannot pass through here as they can in other stretches of the reservoir.
Before you leave the bluff, take a close look at the limestone rock and you will see countless crinoids. These fossil remnants of ancient marine life were deposited here thousands of years ago when this area was covered by a shallow sea.
Round trip walking distance of Lady's Bluff trails is 2.7 miles on gentle to moderately steep grades. The unsurfaced trail averages two to three feet in width and is limited to pedestrians. No horses, motorbikes, or other vehicles are permitted. Natural stone steps are provided in steep areas, and footbridges span two stream crossings. Visitors can park in a gravel parking lot at the trail head.
The view you will have of the Tennessee River, from Lady's Bluff is breathtaking! Be sure to bring your camera.