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Muscle Shoals Reservation in north Alabama boasts 17 miles of paved and unpaved trails. 1.7 miles of those are of a trail simply known as the Bicycle Trail, an asphalt pathway that bridges the cities across the Tennessee River: Sheffield on the south bank and Florence in the north.
The trail begins on Reservation Road in Sheffield, intersecting with the Reservation Road Trail that travels east-west. It parallels State Route 133 / 157 (Helton Drive) north. There are benches and interpretive signage placed along the path. On the Singing River Bridge, which takes both vehicles and trail users across the river, the Bicycle Trail is sheilded from vehicular traffic by a concrete Jersey barrier and metal fence.
No doubt you will find yourself slowing down to take in the views of expansive view of the river, fringed with trees and shrubs, and the Wilson Dam in the distance. The bridge continues across Patton Island and the Florence Canal, before landing in Florence. While the trail continues straight along SR 133, a more natural stopping or turn-around point is the City of Florence Rest Stop. Where the bridge lands, take a right turn down to the little park, which has parking and restrooms. A short stretch of trail zig-zags right to the shore of the canal, and an unpaved trail begins there and continues alongside it.
In Florence, you can park in the City of Florence Rest Stop Park. Heading north on SR 133/ SR 157, Take the 1 exist, turn right onto SR-133/ Veterans Drive, make the first right turn onto Industry Street and another right onto Phoenix Avenue. Continue to Ironside Street and the parking lot will be on the right.
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