Creek Strolls in North Alabama

One of the simple outings my little family enjoys is a family stroll, particularly if its along a creek. Logan and I have always enjoyed hiking. When our family grew from three to five in 2020, our pace changed and a stroller felt necessary with two newborns and a two year old. We started looking for greenways and walking paths in the area. Its an easy way to get outside and enjoy the sights and sounds of nature without the extra efforts and gear required for hiking. So without further ado, here are our favorite places to take a creek stroll near Athens, AL.

  1. Swan Creek Greenway – This is the only formal greenway in Athens, and luckily its a good one! The main trailhead is located on Hwy 72. From there, the trail heads north for 2.3 miles along Swan Creek, passes Athens Middle School, and ends at the Athens Sportsplex. Its great for birdwatching, and there are several fun places with exposed rocks in the creek that are fun to play on when the water is low. The path is fine crushed gravel, so its fine for most strollers.
  1. Marbut Bend Nature Trail – Located West of Athens this short loop includes a boardwalk through swamp and a dock into the Elk River. While portions of the trail are large gravel, we have taken a stroller or stroller wagon each time with no issues. We have taken our kids since they were barely walking, but I should mention that the boardwalk has no rails and the dock rails are wide enough a small child can definitely fit through. With those hazards in mind, it still a great trail.
  1. Bradford Creek Greenway – This paved greenway in the heart of Madison, AL stretches 2.3 miles from Heritage Elementary south to Palmer Park. As the name indicates, it parallels Bradford Creek while meandering behind neighborhoods and through farmland. Its great place to stroll or bike. We like to end our stroll with dinner at one of the nearby restaurants. Our favorites are Goodland Pourhouse and Sam and Greg’s Pizza.
  1. Indian Creek Greenway – Another paved greenway, this City of Huntsville managed path is currently divided into two segments. The northern segment is shorter (1 mile) and runs through Providence. The southern segment runs from Slaughter Rd to Cheekwood Park (2 miles) where there is a great playground for the kids. The long term plan is to connect these two segments for a 6 mile path through the heart of Huntsville. We prefer the northern segment, because we like to add on a stroll through Providence and pick up treats at Edgar’s Bakery or grab dinner at one of the many restaurants there.

Do you have a favorite creek stroll in North Alabama? Let us know in the comments because I am always looking for somewhere new to take the kids.

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