When visitors and locals alike think of getting away from the office, or getting outside and spending a little time with Mother Nature, it doesn’t always lead them out to the back country or to travel to some of our areas more popular outdoor areas. Many folks find their way to the Little Tennessee River Greenway. The LTRG is a path that runs along the Little Tennessee River, nearly five miles long, stretching through downtown Franklin and a little beyond. The path is mostly paved, almost the entire length of the greenway to be exact, and except for a section that is roughly a few hundred feet of gravel, can be accessed by bike enthusiasts, runners, walkers and everyone in between.
Some would say that the LTRG is for the dogs. Literally. One of the newly added features of the Little Tennessee River Greenway in the last couple of years is a gated dog park. The dog park is located at the Big Bear Shelter area, with ample parking, it’s a popular place for visitors and Franklin residents alike to bring “Fido” and let him (or her) get a little time off the leash. The Greenway is a dog friendly area as well, however, while on the Greenway, folks are required to have their dog on a leash for the safety of the dog and other Greenway users.
You can walk the same path on the LTRG everyday of your visit and see the something new every time. How’s that, you ask? With the varying natural wild flowers and fauna along the river and pathways, and the various wildlife, including white tail deer, ground hogs, rabbits, ducks, and geese – you may start to think you’ve mistakenly walked into a zoo! There have even been a few black bear sightings along the Greenway, though they are very few and far between. Some of the other “wild life” you may incur along your visit to the LTRG are some of Franklin’s finest outdoor runners. The Little Tennessee River Greenway plays an important role in numerous fundraising running events throughout the year, offering runners of all ages, skill, and for some, desire to run (and maybe walk a little) to help raise money for their favorite charities.
In all, there is so much to see and experience along the Little Tennessee River Greenway, we could never fit it into one story. If you’d like to learn more about the Little Tennessee River Greenway, it’s history, and the Friends Of the Greenway (F.R.O.G) – please visit their website and see what has gone into the creation, and what continues to be done for the preservation, of the LTRG at the Friends of the Greenway’s website at http://www.littletennessee.org/.
For more information about other area hiking and outdoor recreation, please visit the Franklin Chamber of Commerce’s main website at www.franklin-chamber.com