Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
557.00 ft (169.77 m)
Trail type
Loop
Distance
4.50 mi (7.24 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Mammoth Cave National Park is well known for its caves, and most people visiting the park are there to take one of the many fantastic tours through Mammoth Cave. But what sometimes gets overlooked are all the above-ground options available at the park. The Green River Bluffs Trail is one example. Conveniently located near the visitor center, it makes for a great activity while you’re waiting for your cave tour to begin, or if you just need some time outside on a trail.

This trail traverses a bluff area along the Green River. Even in summer, when the foliage is at its thickest, there are two or three great views overlooking the river. The trail is mostly singletrack with mixed terrain, changing from dirt to gravel to paved paths several times. Several benches are scattered along the trail, available if you want to sit and rest for a bit to take it all in. The scenery is incredible with views of the river, sinkholes, springs, cave entrances, rock formations, and more.

There are also plenty of side trails that head back to the visitor center if you need to cut your hike short. This allows you to make your hike as long or as short as you want. The trail is very well marked with signage at trail intersections. To complete the full loop, start at the picnic area just north of the visitor center. Look for signs to the Green River Bluffs Trail and follow that trail 1.4 miles to completion. At that trail intersection, take the Echo River Springs Trail 0.8 mile and turn left onto the Sinkhole Trail. The Sinkhole Trail will intersect with the Heritage Trail, and from there just follow the signs back to the visitor center.

Bring water, and especially in spring bring bug spray, and enjoy yourself out there.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter
Spring
Summer
Fall

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

None

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Varied scenery. Close to visitor center. Family friendly.

Cons

Trees can obscure views.

Trailhead Elevation

812.00 ft (247.50 m)

Highest point

840.00 ft (256.03 m)

Features

Family friendly
Near lake or river
Potable water
Flushing toilets
Big vistas
Geologically significant
Wildflowers

Typically multi-day

No

Permit required

No

Location

Field Guide

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