Sycamore Shoals Walking Trail

Sycamore Shoals Walking Trail

Sycamore Shoals in Elizabethton, Tennessee

Our walk at Sycamore Shoals State Park in Elizabethton was not planned. It’s so close to home that it has become a favorite place to visit when we just have a few hours to spend and we want to spend our time wisely.

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Yesterday was one of those lovely, summer days where we had little spare time. Still, the weather was perfect, the skies were clear, and staying inside was simply not an option. A long mountain hike could not be managed but a beautiful walk could easily be done.

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On days like this, we almost always end up walking the trails at Sycamore Shoals in Elizabethton. Tall trees line the paths and keep you cool. Markers are set to teach you which tree is which. The river runs along beside of you. It’s peaceful and the trail is smooth, well maintained, and gentle. No strenuous hiking is done here but runners love it and dog walkers too! So do little families like mine that just want to enjoy the beauty of East Tennessee.

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Sycamore Shoals is a place that has witnessed History unfold. The Park often puts on events. Most recently was the Native American Festival. We have also attended several historical recreations. To learn more about what’s happening at Sycamore Shoals click here.

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We love to walk through the fort and explore the museum. Actually, T’s very first day of homeschool we went through the museum and then he did his first homeschool written assignment sitting inside of the fort. The squirrels were intrigued by him. He was so happy to be free of public school and I was so happy to finally see him happy. So, this place has personal memories too!

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Yesterday, flowers were in bloom everywhere. This beautiful yellow iris was my favorite.

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The Park has a little garden that usually attracts tons of butterflies but yesterday the bees were there in abundance.

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The highlight of our trip was when T dared my Mom to climb out on this tree that falls over the rapids. I couldn’t believe it when she accepted the challenge!

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First, T had to show her how.

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In this spot, you tend to see a lot of fly fishing. One day we were watching as this happy fisherman caught a huge fish. I wish I had my camera and could have caught his expression when he first lifted it from the waters and realized its size. Victory! The fish was a fighter. The fisherman was too. Over and over he pulled it from the water and tried with all his might to get it into his net but it was so big he couldn’t manage to get the whole thing in. T and I watched and encouraged him from the shore as he struggled with it. Every time we thought he had him captured the fish would find some strength and fight some more and out of the net he would go. The fisherman was determined and they battled for a while. In the end, the fish got away.

The fisherman called to us, “No one will ever believe I caught one that big!”

“We will know!” T called back. “And he saw it too.” T said pointing to a Heron who also loves it there and had watched the whole thing with us.

Every time we reach this spot we both wonder how that fish is doing.

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We have met a lot of nice people on these walks! We have also met the friendliest squirrels around here. Like this little guy we caught snacking! He didn’t mind having his photo taken at all. Check out this cutie!

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You can see why we return to Sycamore Shoals Walking Trail so often. If you have an hour or two and need to get some fresh air, we recommend you visit. The museum is great. Classes are often offered. A swimming pool and tennis court are right there. The fort is amazing and the History is real. Go enjoy your day!




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