Where to opt outside near Lexington

An overlook of the Kentucky River
An overlook of the Kentucky River | Photo by The LEXtoday

#Optoutside — this hashtag trends nationwide this time of year and was started by REI — a retail + outdoor recreation company.

The company encourages people across the US to leave behind the hustle + bustle of Black Friday shopping, and instead reconnect with family by spending time outdoors together. 

We want to make it easy for you and your family to choose to #optoutside around Lexington. So wrap up those extra turkey sandwiches, fill your Yeti tumblers with hot chocolate + enjoy this list of local hiking trails that we think would make great post-turkey day hikes. 

Raven Run Nature Sanctuary | Green Trail

Raven Run is a 734-acre nature sanctuary just outside of Lexington with 10+ miles of hiking trails. Taking the Green Trail east will be the most direct and easiest route to the Kentucky River overlook — one of the preserve’s more popular + instagrammable spots. 

Cove Spring Park | Raceway Spur Trail

Cove Spring Park is a 240-acre nature preserve in Frankfort, KY that features waterfalls, springs + forested ravines. The Raceway Spur Trail makes for an easy adventure. The leisurely .15-mile trail will allow you to explore a waterfall and a historic reservoir dam. 

Jessamine County Nature Preserve | Gorge Trail

The Jessamine County Nature Preserve is 155-acres + sits along the palisades region of the Kentucky River. The Gorge Trail is ~2 miles long and features a beautiful overlook of Jessamine Creek. Late fall is the best time to hike this trail — foliage tends to obscure the overlook during the summer. 

Daniel Boone National Forest | Broke Leg Falls

The Broke Leg Falls Trail in Daniel Boone National Forest is a .5-mile trail that features a 60-ft. waterfall. The trail has built-in steps that lead hikers down to the base of the falls — making this an easily accessible adventure for families with small kids.