Sunday, April 17, 2011

Enterprise South Nature Park-Something for everyone

One day my family and I were on a late evening walk near a small creek in a quiet wooded area. We were enjoying the beautiful scenery, when a small yellow butterfly came up to say hello. We stopped for a moment to watch it skirting around the bushes. We continued on our walk and, as we moved along a bend in the trail, we came across a very unusual site. It was a large bunker full of ammunition boxes. A brown sign near the bunker read “Historical Exhibit”, so we wondered in to take a look at the ammunition storage area. As we came out of the bunker, a group of off road bicyclists came by enjoying the mountain trails.
We continued on our walk, eventually coming across a wooded cove near the creek. This little cove offered a vision straight out of “the old days”. It was a small area where two large hills met creating a little valley. A gentle brook babbled through it. A few trees were dispersed throughout a grassy area strewn with picnic tables. It was very easy to pictures ladies attired in 19th century dress laying out picnics for their families on a Sunday afternoon. It was an adorable spot.  This is a definite area to come back to.
As we walked along the wooded path in quiet, enjoying the sounds of nature, we heard a rustling in the woods ahead of us. We stopped for a moment in complete silence wondering what could be making the noise. All of a sudden two white-tail deer crossed the pathway a few yards in front of us. My family and stood in amazement as we watched them. They stopped and looked at us for a split second and then bounded off into the woods with great beauty.
Enterprise South Nature Park is definitely a boon to the city of Chattanooga and Hamilton County.  It takes the city/county’s reputation of an area for nature/outdoor enthusiasts to a whole new level. Built at the old Volunteer Army Ammunitions Plant, now the home of Volkswagen Chattanooga and future home of, the park has something for every nature lover from the occasional picnicker to the hardcore mountain biker.
The park offers 2,800 acres of wooded trails, picnic areas, creeks and a small lake. For bicyclists, this equals to 10 miles of mountain bike trails designed and built by SORBA, the Southern Off Road Bicycle Association. The walkers and hikers will enjoy 4.5 miles of walking and hiking trails. There is additional 5 miles of paved walking and bike trails, along with a one mile ADA accessible woodland trail. For those who enjoy driving in nature, the Still Hollow Loop provides 7 miles of driving area and quick access to the historical district and a couple of the 4 picnic areas.
Enterprise South Nature Park is open from sunrise to sunset during the spring, summer and early fall. It can be reached from Bonny Oaks at the Volkswagen Drive entrance or from I-75 at exit 9, Volkswagen Drive. If you are the occasional outdoors enthusiast, be sure to stop by the Visitor’s Center, it is the only place with flushing toilets. Hope to see you there, soon.

Additional Links to enjoy
History of the Volunteer Army Ammunition’s Plant

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