Wolf River Trail Running

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Near downtown Memphis, the Wolf River trails are your best bet for a quick trail run. You'll follow the river most of the way on fairly easy trails.

Written by

Teresa Faulk


0.1 miles

Destination Distance From Downtown

13.8 miles


2 of 5 diamonds

Time To Complete

1 hours

45 - 90 minutes


All Seasons

Dog Friendly

On Leash Only

Dogs are welcome on leash, and there is also an off-leash dog park on the Shelby Farms property.

Fees Permits


Topographical Map

Shelby Farms Park Map



The Wolf River Trail is perhaps the most popular trail in Memphis, and for good reason: The relatively flat and fast terrain appeals to everyone from beginners to veterans. There are two elements of the trail system: the larger Wolf River Greenway, a paved path following much of the river through town, and the unpaved trails at Lucius E. Burch, Jr. State Natural Area (part of Shelby Farms Park). We're speaking of the latter here.

What Makes It Great

It’s a great trail to learn the ins and outs of off-road running–which means experienced runners can get a workout without the ankle-biting dangers of a more technical area. Like its name implies, the trail largely follows the Wolf River.

Who is Going to Love It

This trail has something for everyone; whether you want to crank out a hard workout on a fast trail, or introduce yourself to trail running for the first time with a relatively easy trail surface.

Directions, Parking, & Regulations

The main trails are marked by White, Blue and Yellow. The Yellow trail closely tracks the river; you will have to run through some soft sand and whoop-de-doos, but you’ll be rewarded with the best scenery and bluff views. You can easily cover 10-15 miles, as the trail system runs between Walnut Grove Road and Germantown Road. You can even cross over the Wolf River–using the bridge on Walnut Grove–and find a trail that goes all the way to Midtown (but we can’t officially vouch for its condition and upkeep).

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Wolf River Trailhead (Lucius E. Burch Natural Area)

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