Johnson City’s Great Outdoors


Johnson City’s Great Outdoors

By on Oct 30 2023

October 30, 2023

Johnson City, Tennessee, is recognized for its accessibility to the great outdoors. This vibrant city is central to notable whitewater rivers, freshwater lakes, mountain biking trails, and countless outdoor adventures waiting to be had!

Hiking & Climbing

Venture out to the surrounding Mountain South in less than an hour from downtown. With spectacular views like that of Roan Mountain on the Appalachian Trail, it’s no wonder that Johnson City is the perfect basecamp for mountain adventures. Take in the mountain vistas with 360-degree views.

For the more seasoned climber, Rocky Fork State Park is home to Whitehouse Cliffs. With nearly 40 developed routes, climbers can practice single and multi-pitch climbing routes with beginner and advanced ranges. Permits are required. And new to the region, the Appalachian Bouldering Center recently opened, offering climbers an indoor bouldering gym experience- only half an hour from Johnson City!

Explore an abundance of local city parks in and around town like Founders Park, Winged Deer Park, Buffalo Mountain Park, and so many more! Immerse yourself in nature and learn about the local salamanders, turtles, and pollinators at Jacob’s Nature Park.


Johnson City’s newly revamped Rotary Park offers open space for children of all ages and abilities, with wheelchair accessibility. Check out these 10 “Best Wheelchair Accessible Trails” nearby, including Winged Deer Park.

Mountain Biking & One Wheeling

The views at Tannery Knobs Mountain Bike Park are like no other, and you’re less than 5 minutes from Main Street with tons of local shops and dining. Enjoy over 40 acres of heavily wooded terrain with trails for all skill levels, including the pump track at the top parking lot. Johnson City is saturated with bike trails for every skill level and bike style.

Fave Trails Nearby:

  • Winged Deer Park MTB
  • Unaka Bike Park
  • Pinnacle Mountain Fire Tower
  • Tweetsie Trail for the casual rider and family fun

One wheeling has made its mark on the East Coast, and you can try it for yourself in Unicoi County. Think electric skateboard, and introduce yourself to a sense of riding a snowboard around the mountains without the snow…

Watersports & Fishing

Take on thrilling whitewater adventures near Johnson City, or choose a more laid back approach with lakes fit for paddleboarding. Pristine rivers and calm lakes surround the city with ample access to fun on the water. Johnson City is the perfect basecamp, whether you’re an angler looking to cast a line on the South Holston River or seeking the peaceful views of Watauga Lake.

Top 5 Adventures on the Water Near Johnson City:

  • Whitewater Raft/ Kayak the Nolichucky River
  • Paddleboard Boone Lake via Winged Deer Park
  • Fly Fish the South Holston River
  • Kayak Watauga Lake
  • Fish at Rocky Fork State Park


For more fun trip ideas, be sure to visit this fall when the leaves are in full color.

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