Trails at Narrows of the Harpeth

Date Hiked: 1/3/10

Park: Harpeth River State Park

Address: Kingston Springs, Tennessee 37082

Latitude: 36.15202, Longitude: -87.11843

Trail Rating: short but with a moderate climb and uneven terrain.

Round-Trip Mileage: 2.1 miles

Other Trails in the Park: Hidden Lake (Harpeth River State Park consists of many small; but important tracts of land.)

For Map, Trail Mileage, GPS, and Trail Notes go to Page 2

Pre-Hike Comments

On a cold winter's day we went to hike the Narrows. We knew that it was mainly a unique section of the Harpeth River; but we had heard it was an interesting area. We just went to check it out.

The Hike

Directions: From Interstate 40 take exit 192 McCrory Lane. Go north on McCrory until it dead ends into Hwy 70, Charlotte Pike. Turn left (west) on Hwy 70 and travel 5.4 miles to Cedar Hill Rd. (Cedar Hill is before the bridge on hwy 70 crossing the Harpeth.) Turn right on Cedar Hill and go 3 miles to the Narrows of the Harpeth Park. Turn right off Cedar Hill just before another bridge (Harris-Street Bridge). Parking and the Trailhead are a few hundred feet away.


Trailhead and Parking Area

The Trailhead is at the takeout point for those wanting to canoe the Narrows. The boating routine is to drop off the canoes at the launch point (across Cedar Hill Rd on Narrows of the Harpeth Rd), drive to the takeout, and return to the boats by trail about a half mile distance. It is essentially a five mile canoe trip without a shuttle.

down to the river

Picnicking by the River

From the Trailhead, descend on the trail to a flat area above the river.

trail under the highway bridge

Trail going under Highway Bridge

Follow the river upstream under the Harris-Street Bridge.

trail crossing slope

Crossing steep slope

The trail crosses a steep slope. It descends as it angles across the slope.

entering the cove

Leaving the River trail goes into a cove

After .25 miles the trail leaves the shore and goes into a cove crossing a drainage at .30 miles.

trail beneath cliff

Trail beneath cliffs - ridge seen ahead

Finishing the contour, the trail returns to the river and goes under cliffs.

Looking down at the saddle

Looking down at the saddle

The saddle is located at .40 miles from the trailhead.

tunnel sign

Trail sign

From the saddle go right to reach the "Historic Tunnel".

info kiosk

Historic Kiosk

An historic information kiosk is located near the tunnel's outlet.


Outlet - view through the tunnel

The tunnel's discharge fills a pool before re-entering the Harpeth. The area is unique and when standing in line with the tunnel, the view includes the upstream side of the tunnel.

It is .20 miles to the pool from the saddle - .4 miles round trip.

looking at the climb

Going down the climb to the Bluff Overlook

From the saddle another trail leads up stairs to the Bluff Overlook.

Across the ridge

Along the ridge

At the top of the stairs the trail continues across the ridge, giving a few viewpoints off either side.

Bluff Overlook

The Overlook

The Bluff Overlook is a wonderful perch. There are great views of the Harpeth.

boundary on ridge


Just beyond the Bluff Overlook a sign is posted near the Park Boundary. The Bluff Overlook trail to the sign is .25 miles - .5 miles round trip.

Back at the saddle it is a short distance to the Narrows of the Harpeth Rd.

saddle from the road

Saddle from the road

Go right on the road. The road is headed downstream.

Inlet trail

Trail to Tunnel Inlet leaves road and down a ramp to the right

At .20 miles a path to the left leads down the bank and under the road to the tunnel's inlet. It was an amazing feat of engineering when it was constructed.


Walkway curving around to Tunnel

Return to the saddle and then back to the trailhead. The total round trip was 2.1 miles. It was a short but good adventure.