Woodlands Trace Byway - Middle Tennessee Enjoy Rolling Terrain and Foliage

Explore the Woodlands Trace National Scenic Byway

Woodlands Trace National Scenic Byway is the heart of Land Between The Lakes (LBL), and provides several stops for canoeing the many creeks and inlets, sleeping under the stars, exploring the seasonal changes on the hiking trails, or biking alongside Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley. This 45-mile picturesque drive runs the length of the area from near Dover at the south to Grand Rivers, Kentucky at the northern end. Water activities are a major attraction, but there is plenty for everyone to see and do over this 170,000-acre area.

At the byway’s southern end, a seasonal welcome station provides information, maps and guides for the road and the entire national recreation area. Going north, historic sites include the iron furnace, elk and bison ranges, and The Homeplace, a living history village. The main visitor center for LBL is located on the roadway at Golden Pond in Kentucky.

National Scenic Byways are designated as such based on their archaeological, cultural, historic, natural, recreational, and scenic qualities. There are 150 nationally designated byway routes in 50 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia, with five located in Tennessee. You can see two on this trail.

Autumn Angling in the Land Between the Lakes

Pack your tackle box, grab your fishing gear, and take the Woodlands Trace for a relaxing autumn vacation in the Land Between The Lakes. The byway forms the backbone of this National Recreation Area, an inland peninsula between Lake Barkley and Kentucky Lake that spans over 170,000 acres of Kentucky and Tennessee. With these lakes and several others, along with numerous interior ponds, you’ll find plenty of spots to drop a line and hook one of the more than 10 species of game fish found in the region. As golden leaves crunch underfoot, make your way to a spot where trees overshadow the water for the best shot at bluegill, or try your hand at catching smallmouth bass where one of many softly babbling brooks empty into the lakes.

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Running along a ridge of land between Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley, Woodlands Trace is a beautiful, easy drive in rolling terrain with opportunities to pull off and explore on your own or at developed interpretive facilities. This outdoor setting includes the seasonal splendors of nature, with blossoming trees and flowers, a green canopy, brilliant fall foliage, and the open view in the forest in the winter.