This is a scenic hike just outside of Nashville that you can take the entire family on. The combination of trails is the best way to loop you around the lake for a beautiful 2.6 mile hike.

If you want a break from the city, take an early morning hike around Radnor Lake. Start this quiet trek by arriving at sunrise to snag a parking spot at the East Parking Lot. Walk down Otter Creek Road until you see the Lake Trail on the right. From there, enjoy a 1.4 mile scenic hike through the woods, encountering the park's abundant wildlife along the way.

The lake will peek through the trees along this wooded hike until you reach the end of the trail. From there, continue over the Dam Walkway onto Otter Creek Road for 1.2 miles of stunning lake views and observation decks. This will loop you around the lake to where you started.

Before you head out, note that the park is a Class II Natural Area, so there is no jogging, biking or dogs on the trails. This is to keep from disturbing the delicate wildlife and ecosystem within the park. You can, however, jog, bike and walk dogs on the road. The parking lots fill up on weekends, so getting there early is key. There are two parking lots, east and west. You can access this adventure from either.

Pack List

  • Hiking shoes
  • Water bottle
  • Camera
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RT Distance 2.6 Miles
Activities Chillin, Photography, Running, Hiking, Fitness
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Trail Type Loop
Features
Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Family Friendly
Lake
Scenic
Wildlife

Reviews

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My native hike.

Lived in Oak Hill since I was born in 93 and our first house's back yard was connected to the state park. Radnor Lake and its adjacent neighborhoods are not only a miraculous bastion of nature in an exploding metropolitan area, but they're special to me being the environment in which I've spent most of my life. It's way more crowded these days than it used to be, but it's still the same homely, modest, relaxing hike I remember from my childhood.

Beautiful and popular

I love stopping by here, when I need some time outdoors. There's so much to see and so close to the city! I only suggest going on a weekday and not the weekend. It is so popular that the parking is almost as bad as being in the city. Weekdays are so much easier and much less crowded.

Nice In-town Nature Walk

This is a nice walk just outside of 'Old Brentwood'. The trail is a 2.5 mile loop that consists of an old asphalt roadbed, a gravel maintenance road, dirt trail, and mulched trail. Dogs are not permitted on the mulched or dirt portions of the loop which makes for an 'out and back' 2-mile walk for those with dogs. What I dislike about Radnor Lake is the asphalt roadbed turned trail that is currently falling into the lake. There are some obvious drainage issues that have caused the road portion of the trail to deteriorate. It's fine for walking but a major eye sore for being a prominent feature in a State Park. The road either needs to be renovated as a bike trail or removed. The metal barricades placed intermittently around collapsed sections of the road shouldn't be semi-permanent fixtures.


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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