Ijams River Boardwalk Hike

Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Hiking Map (.pdf)
Ijams Event Calendar

I don’t try to document everything about a place that we visit, after all, I am not a paid travel writer. But I do try to spread the news about those extra special places that Jim and I have discovered. The Ijams River Boardwalk is one of those must see places to experience.

There are over 40 miles of trails at Ijams. Jim and I decided to start exploring them one day last week on foot. I don’t think the trails are well marked other than at the trail heads, at least the ones that circled the main nature center where we walked. I say this because we would come upon forks in the trail and not know where we were or which way to turn, so we circled back a few times. But, to be fair, we were using a very small, low-detail map from a free brochure.

Ijams River Boardwalk Trail Head Ijams River Boardwalk Geologic Fold at Ijams Along River Boardwalk Geologic Fold at Ijams along River Boardwalk Wildflowers Along River Boardwalk at Ijams Cave Along River Boardwalk at Ijams Solomons Seal | Wildflower at Ijams Wildflowers Along River Boardwalk at Ijams Ijams River Boardwalk Ijams River Boardwalk Handicap Accessible Boat Launch at Ijams IMG_4485

Download this more detailed map of the wildlife sanctuary trails or purchase one for $1 at the nature center before you start to make your hiking more enjoyable and easier to get around.

We did find our way over to the boardwalk along the Tennessee River and that was really a treat.  The boardwalk cantilevered out over the water and took you past several caves and unusual rock formations.  At one point, there was a staircase that took you up to an unusual “geologic fold” in the rock layers.  I would love to know more about how this was formed.

Gazing across the river, I could imagine going back in time to the days of Tom Sawyer.  Time definitely is slower here, if you let it be.

There were a number of wildflowers blooming, and of course birds, so be sure to take a flower identification book and some binoculars.

This hike is definitely a must see.  I can’t wait to take my nieces there when they come to visit.  Life is an adventure.