River Bluff Trail- Detailed
River Bluff Trail
Access: From Campbellsville turn left onto Lake Road and park at the Big Oak Day Use Area on right. Cross road and turn right. Follow guardrail to trailhead.
Brief Description: This ~ 3/4 mile lollipop loop trail is maintained by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers @ Green River Lake. It is an easy trail suitable for the entire family with only one small hill climb. The trail traverses a ridge of second-growth mixed hardwoods that overlooks Green River and Green River Dam with obstructed views.
The Hike: At the trailhead you leave the sounds of motor boats on Green River Lake behind. Notice a dense row of autumn olive shrubs, an invasive species that is beginning to spread into the forest. Once you enter the loop you immediately find yourself in a dense stand of pine trees walking over a soft carpet of pine needles. When you emerge from the pines, you enter the mixed hardwood forest of mostly oaks, hickories and some eastern red cedar. Look down and you will notice a green groundcover- a primitive plant called ground cedar.
Soon you will be on one of two points of the ridge lined with eastern hemlock trees.During winter and early spring you can catch glimpses of Green River after it emerges from the reservoir. This is where Kentucky’s most biodiverse river now begins since the completion of the dam circa 1970.
As you turn back toward the trailhead notice mountain laurel in the understory and some very large trees (below). Numerous squirrels as well as woodland birds frequent this area in winter including woodpeckers, nuthatches, tufted titmouse, Carolina chickadee, brown creeper, and blue jays. This section of the trail can be a bit noisy as you are not far from the busy HWY 55 Green River Bridge. soon you will close the loop and exit at the trailhead.