Humphreys County Trails and Byways
Humphreys County and the surrounding area hold more beauty, nature, and fun than you might expect. Whether you’re looking for outdoor activities, historic sites, or just a pretty drive, this is where you want to be.
THE TENNESSEE RIVER TRAIL
The Tennessee River Trail is filled with activities that will tickle any outdoorsman. Hiking, canoeing, birdwatching, fishing—it’s all here in Humphreys County. And don’t worry; if shopping and eating is more your thing, there’s plenty of that along the Tennessee River Trail, too.
Let’s start our trip with the great outdoors. When you enter Humphreys County, you might just do so by the exit at Bucksnort on I-40. Right there in Bucksnort, you can also enjoy horseback riding along miles of trails through the forest. If you’ve got some vacation time, plan one of the week-long rides, where you can enjoy nature, home-cooked meals, and live music most nights.
At Johnsonville State Historic Park, enjoy the bits of history that still exist among the nature. This town, named for Andrew Jackson, was destroyed during the Civil War, but you can still see remnants of the town and the war efforts while out for a walk.
Just a few miles away, you’ll find the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge at Duck River Bottoms.
This is the place to be for birdwatchers, especially those hoping to spot hawks, bald eagles, and other large birds. The trails and refuge roads are excellent for viewing various other wildlife throughout the year. Just don’t get too close!
If indoorsy activities are more your speed, then you should seek out Hurricane Mills, where you’ll find Loretta Lynn’s home, Cissie Lynn’s Country Store and Music Barn, and Loretta Lynn’s Ranch. You can spend a whole day touring the old plantation home, the various museums on the property, and viewing the log cabin replica for an idea of where Loretta Lynn got her start in life.
Just down the road in Waverly, visit the Butterfield House, home of the Humphreys County Museum. On Main Street, catch a movie at the historic Mi-De-Ga Theater and enjoy the various shops and eateries before you head out to your next destination on the Tennessee River Trail.
Screaming Eagle Trail
We’ll be honest; in the Humphreys County area, a lot of the same attractions show up on the Tennessee River Trail and the Screaming Eagle Trail. If you think that perhaps the Screaming Eagle Trail offers a few more outdoorsy and, well, extreme activities, you’d be right.
You will find the Tennessee National Wildlife Refuge on both trails. You’ll find Loretta Lynn’s home in Hurricane Mills on both trails. You will, however, only find the Buffalo River KOA campground on the Screaming Eagle Trail.
Johnsonville State Park is on both trail lists. So is the Humphreys County Museum at the Butterfield House. Pebble Island Marina in Johnsonville is also on both You’ll only find Music City Skydiving on the Screaming Eagle Trail. If you’re looking to get your blood pumping, this is the trail to pick.
If you really just prefer to get in the car and go, then Humphreys County is also just the place for you. Every road you take is bound to leave you breathless from the beauty and wildlife you’ll encounter. The Tennessee River Trail Scenic Byway covers six hundred miles of picturesque forest, riverbank, lakeside, and small-town charm.
As you drive, you’re likely to notice the lakes and rivers take center stage, with several marinas offering water sports and boat rentals. Stop if you like, but if you prefer to stay in the car, you can enjoy the best of both worlds with a ride on the Benton-Houston Ferry in Big Sandy, one of only three remaining ferries in the state of Tennessee.
The scenic byways will also take you past several Civil War sites, like Johnsonville State Historic Park in New Johnsonville, the Fort Donelson National Cemetery in Dover, and Shiloh National Cemetery in Shiloh. Some of these are a fair drive from Humphreys County, but you’re planning a day of driving, they’re worth the trip.
You’ll find no shortage of Southern heritage and culture as you drive the scenic loop through this part of Tennessee. Humphreys County alone has Enoch’s Mill in McEwen, the Humphreys County Museum and Civil War Fort in Waverly, and the Waverly Train Explosion Memorial, also in Waverly. Just a few miles down the road, you can take a drive through the Russell Creek or Cane Creek Mennonite Communities in Lobelville or cruise through the Arts and Historic District in Linden. On the other side of the lake, the Tennessee River Freshwater Pearl Farm and Museum awaits, but you might want to get out of the car for that visit.
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