111 acres Natural Trail: 4.7-mile loop and 0.6-mile downhill only Difficulty: moderate to advanced Just 10 minutes from downtown, Sharp’s Ridge Veterans Memorial Park offers a great view of the city skyline and the distant mountain peaks. About half way to the top of the ridge, there is an overlook platform providing views of the Downtown Knoxville skyline and the Great Smoky Mountains.
Features: sheltered picnic areas, observation deck, trails, hiking, trail running, mountain bikes, wildlife viewing, birding.
There is a 1.2-mile adaptive, all-access nature trail with 4.7 miles of multi-use trails that wind across the wooded hills and range from moderate to difficult in skill range for hiking and biking. The trails can be accessed from several trailheads throughout the park which will be easily identified by the beautiful wooden kiosks and pergolas. There are also trailheads with parking located within the Oakwood-Lincoln Park neighborhood on Hanover/Ridge Road and on Dill Avenue. There is a trailhead at the top of the ridge at end of the Park Road in the cul-de-sac near the cell tower. Foot traffic and dogs are not allowed on this trail as it is the 0.6 mile Gravity Jump Trail and is a black diamond expert only trail for mountain bikers. Sharps Ridge trails drain extremely well and are a great place to hike or ride when other Knoxville trails are too wet.
Sharp's Ridge Memorial Park is one of the best places in the Knoxville region to observe migrant songbirds during the spring, and it is also a good fall migration observation location between mid-September and mid-October. It is well known and popular with birders, who are usually present in the mornings during April and early May. At this time, it is common to record 15 or more species of wood warblers, and on occasion, 20 or more warblers. Vireos, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, thrushes, tanagers, Indigo Buntings, Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, and orioles are all frequent. Almost all birding is done by walking the 1 mile, generally flat, road that traverses the top of the ridge.