Woah. This all began because I wanted to highlight a couple fun and unique Nashville spots. Mikaela Hamilton and I jotted down a couple places to highlight and headed out - right as it began to rain. So we embraced it and created a little Nashville Guide for a Rainy Day. We decided to save the "sunny day" activities for a later date.
And then I found myself here - attempting to create words for a unique guide to opting outside in middle Tennessee. Here I sit, utterly speechless - because I can't put into words how incredible this life is. That this could be just a "day in the life" - and how lucky I am to have it magically captured by Mikaela who brings joy and depth to every adventure (and, of course, absurd talent).
Welcome to the day of my dreams.
1. Salt and Vine
Salt and Vine is a new spot over on the West Side that's recently been the main culprit in the draining of my bank account. It's walking distance from my place in Sylvan Park and I've "accidentally" found myself there at any given hour of the day. It's a gourmet market, wine bar and restaurant all in one. On this particular day we stopped in to stock up on a fancy picnic for our hike.
4001 Charlotte Ave Nashville, TN 37209
2. Hike in Bells Bend
Let me preface this day by saying that these Middle Tennessee activities are not nearby each other. Doing all of this in one day is aggressive. I've done this hike for sunrise to start the day because it's a steep incline but relatively short to the best vantage point. Once the sun is up you can venture on to longer hikes from the same starting point. But the view here is beyond worth it, and a great place to post up with a picnic - cue Salt & Vine goodies. I have this amazing hiking backpack from lululemon that I've taken all across the country from Jackson Hole to Asheville. It's the perfect day-pack.
Here is the address to this specific trailhead.
Anything on, near, or around the water is my hearts cry. This is another early morning weekly activity for me - and was a MUST for this dream outdoor guide. There are a ton of access points to SUP board in Nashville. We're lucky enough to have the Cumberland River and Percy Priest Lake. I own a board and have found a location that works for me, but you can rent boards and hop on the water here. Occasionally (and when the weather is nice) you can find full moon SUP nights and SUP yoga.
4. Country Back Roads to Leipers Fork for Sunset, Southern food and Stargazing
If being on the water is my hearts cry, drives on back country roads are my love language. We blasted Kevin Garrett and Mikaela snapped away with her head out the window as I drove us out to Leipers Fork on my favorite back roads. I (wouldn't, but) could do it with my eyes closed. There's a spot along the way where you can hop out and play on a rope swing or fish.
We stopped at the original Pucketts Grocery for a little meat-and-three (google that if that's a new concept). My heart and soul seem to be fueled each time I venture just miles outside of town to Leipers Fork. Maybe it's the kind and welcoming locals smoking meat outside or strumming on guitar strings, maybe it's the fresh air, or maybe there's something truly magical that exists out here. We ventured just down the road and pulled off to watch the sunset and were so overcome by awe, that we ended up staying for hours. This is a primo spot for stargazing. We talked about Jesus, splendor and brokenness. And drove home, windows down, feeling more gladness and peace than I can put to words.