Tannehill Tramway Trail In Alabama

Here is everything you need to know about the Tannehill Tramway Trail:

  • Trail System: National Recreation Trail
  • State: Alabama
  • Length: 1 miles.
  • Type: Hiking.
  • Surface: gravel
  • Managed By: Alabama State Parks
  • Permit Required?: No
  • Website: Not available.

The Tannehill Tramway Trail holds a significant place in the history of Alabama, as it was once a vital transportation route during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The trail follows the path of the former Tannehill Ironworks Tramway, which was constructed in 1859 to transport iron ore from the nearby Roupes Valley Ironworks to the Tannehill Furnaces. This tramway played a crucial role in the iron industry of Alabama, which was booming at the time.

The Tannehill Ironworks Tramway was a narrow-gauge railroad that spanned approximately 9 miles, connecting the iron ore mines to the furnaces. It was initially built using wooden rails, but these were later replaced with iron rails to improve durability and efficiency. The tramway featured horse-drawn carts that transported the iron ore, and it operated until the early 20th century when the iron industry in the region declined.

During its peak, the Tannehill Tramway was a bustling hub of activity, with workers laboring to extract iron ore from the mines and transport it to the furnaces. The iron produced at Tannehill was of high quality and was used for various purposes, including the production of weapons during the Civil War. The tramway played a crucial role in facilitating the transportation of this valuable resource, contributing to the growth and development of the iron industry in Alabama.

Today, the Tannehill Tramway Trail serves as a reminder of this important chapter in Alabama’s history. Visitors can explore the trail, which winds through picturesque landscapes and offers glimpses of the remnants of the tramway, such as old rail beds and trestles. The trail provides a unique opportunity to step back in time and appreciate the ingenuity and hard work of those who were involved in the iron industry during its heyday.

While On The Trail

Access Points

The Tannehill Tramway Trail is a 1.5-mile trail located in Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park in Alabama. Here are the major access points or trailheads along the trail:

1. Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park Entrance: The main entrance to the park serves as the starting point for the Tannehill Tramway Trail. It provides parking facilities and access to the trail.

2. Furnace Trailhead: This trailhead is located near the historic furnace area within the park. It offers parking and access to the Tannehill Tramway Trail.

3. Iron and Steel Museum Trailhead: The Iron and Steel Museum of Alabama is situated within the park, and a trailhead near the museum provides access to the Tannehill Tramway Trail.

4. Slave Quarters Trailhead: This trailhead is located near the slave quarters area within the park. It offers parking and access to the Tannehill Tramway Trail.

5. Campground Trailhead: Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park has a campground area, and a trailhead near the campground provides access to the Tannehill Tramway Trail.

These are the major access points or trailheads along the Tannehill Tramway Trail.

Transportation Available

1. Uber – On-demand ridesharing service.
2. Lyft – Ride-hailing service connecting passengers with drivers.
3. Yellow Cab – Traditional taxi service available for transportation needs.
4. Birmingham-Jefferson County Transit Authority (BJCTA) – Public bus service serving the Birmingham area.
5. Lime – Electric scooter and bike rental service for short-distance travel.
6. Zipcar – Car-sharing service providing access to vehicles on an hourly or daily basis.
7. Enterprise Rent-A-Car – Car rental service offering a variety of vehicles for longer trips.
8. Greyhound – Intercity bus service connecting various cities across the United States.
9. Amtrak – National passenger railroad service with a station in Birmingham.
10. Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport – Nearby airport providing domestic and international flights.


The amenities available at the Tannehill Tramway Trail include:

1. Restrooms: There are restroom facilities available for visitors to use.

2. Parking: There is parking available for visitors’ vehicles.

3. Camping Sites: Tannehill State Park, where the Tramway Trail is located, offers camping sites for those who wish to stay overnight.

4. Picnic Areas: There are designated picnic areas where visitors can enjoy a meal or snack.

5. Hiking Trails: The Tramway Trail itself is a popular hiking trail, offering scenic views and opportunities for outdoor recreation.

6. Visitor Center: Tannehill State Park has a visitor center where visitors can obtain information about the park, its history, and any events or activities taking place.

7. Playground: There is a playground area for children to enjoy.

8. Fishing: Tannehill State Park has fishing opportunities, with several ponds and streams available for fishing enthusiasts.

9. Historic Sites: The park is home to several historic sites, including the Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park, which showcases the history of iron production in Alabama.

10. Gift Shop: There is a gift shop where visitors can purchase souvenirs, snacks, and other items.

Please note that amenities may be subject to change or availability, so it is always a good idea to check with the park authorities or website for the most up-to-date information.

Nearby Services

1. Tannehill State Park Campground – Campground located within Tannehill State Park, offering lodging options for visitors.
2. Hampton Inn Birmingham/Bessemer – Nearby hotel providing comfortable accommodations for travelers.
3. McDonald’s – Fast-food restaurant serving a variety of meals and snacks.
4. Subway – Sandwich shop offering a range of subs and salads.
5. Waffle House – Casual diner serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
6. Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park – Nearby historical park showcasing the remnants of a 19th-century ironworks facility.
7. Comfort Inn Bessemer – Hotel providing convenient lodging options for visitors.
8. Cracker Barrel Old Country Store – Restaurant and gift shop offering Southern-style comfort food.
9. Holiday Inn Express & Suites Bessemer – Hotel offering comfortable accommodations and amenities for travelers.
10. UAB Medical West – Nearby hospital providing emergency medical services.

Tannehill Tramway Trail Difficulty Notes

The Tannehill Tramway Trail offers a moderate difficulty level, making it suitable for hikers of various skill levels. The trail spans approximately 2.5 miles and features a mix of flat sections and gentle inclines, providing a manageable challenge for both beginners and experienced hikers. While there are some rocky areas and uneven terrain, the trail is well-maintained and clearly marked, ensuring a safe and enjoyable hiking experience. With its scenic views and historical significance, the Tannehill Tramway Trail offers a rewarding adventure for those seeking a moderate level of difficulty.

Features And Attractions

The Tannehill Tramway Trail is a scenic trail located in Alabama, USA. Along this trail, you can find various scenic views, historical sites, natural landmarks, and more. Here are some notable points of interest along the Tannehill Tramway Trail:

1. Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park: The trail starts and ends at this historical park, which was once a major industrial complex during the 19th century. It offers a glimpse into Alabama’s iron industry history.

2. Tannehill Furnaces: These historic iron furnaces are a significant part of the Tannehill Ironworks complex. They were used to produce iron during the Civil War era.

3. Old Iron Bridge: This picturesque bridge spans across the Roupes Creek and offers a scenic view of the surrounding nature.

4. Roupes Creek Falls: Located near the trail, this small waterfall is a beautiful natural landmark that adds to the trail’s charm.

5. Slave Cemetery: A somber reminder of the past, this cemetery is a historical site that pays tribute to the enslaved individuals who worked at the Tannehill Ironworks.

6. Pioneer Farm: This living history exhibit showcases the daily life of early settlers in Alabama. Visitors can see traditional farming techniques and interact with costumed interpreters.

7. Collins House: A historic plantation home, the Collins House is a well-preserved example of antebellum architecture. It offers a glimpse into the lifestyle of the wealthy during that era.

8. Cotton Gin: This restored cotton gin demonstrates the process of cotton production, highlighting the importance of this crop in Alabama’s history.

9. Nature Trails: The Tannehill Tramway Trail is surrounded by beautiful natural landscapes, including forests, meadows, and streams. These areas offer opportunities for birdwatching, wildlife spotting, and enjoying the peacefulness of nature.

10. Historic Railroad Equipment: Along the trail, you can find various historic railroad equipment, including locomotives, railcars, and other artifacts. These remnants of the past add an interesting touch to the trail.

These are just a few examples of the scenic views, historical sites, and natural landmarks you can encounter along the Tannehill Tramway Trail. Exploring this trail will provide a rich experience of Alabama’s history and natural beauty.

Usage Guidelines

– Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times.
– Clean up after your pets and dispose of waste properly.
– Bicycles are allowed on the trail, but riders must yield to pedestrians.
– No motorized vehicles are allowed on the trail.
– Camping or overnight stays are not permitted.
– Fires and open flames are strictly prohibited.
– Hunting or trapping is not allowed.
– Fishing is allowed in designated areas only, following state fishing regulations.
– Swimming or wading in the creek is not permitted.
– Littering is strictly prohibited; please use designated trash receptacles.
– Alcohol consumption is not allowed on the trail.
– Respect seasonal restrictions, such as closures during hunting seasons.
– Follow all posted signs and instructions from park staff.
– Stay on designated trails and do not venture off into restricted areas.
– Be mindful of other trail users and maintain a safe distance.
– Enjoy the natural beauty of the trail and leave it as you found it.

Seasonal Information

The Tannehill Tramway Trail, located in Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park in Alabama, offers visitors a unique opportunity to explore the remnants of an old mining tramway. While the trail is open year-round, there are certain times of the year that are particularly ideal for a visit.

One of the best times to visit the Tannehill Tramway Trail is during the spring season, from March to May. During this time, the park comes alive with vibrant colors as wildflowers bloom along the trail, creating a picturesque setting for hikers and nature enthusiasts. The weather is generally mild and pleasant, making it comfortable to explore the trail and enjoy the surrounding scenery.

Another great time to visit is in the fall, from September to November. As the leaves change colors, the trail transforms into a stunning display of autumn hues. The cooler temperatures make hiking more enjoyable, and the park is less crowded compared to the summer months. Fall also brings various events and festivals to the park, providing visitors with additional entertainment and cultural experiences.

It’s important to note that the Tannehill Tramway Trail may have seasonal closures or restrictions. During the winter months, from December to February, the park may experience occasional closures due to inclement weather or maintenance work. It’s advisable to check the park’s website or contact the park office before planning a visit during this time. Additionally, some sections of the trail may be temporarily closed for repairs or renovations, so it’s always a good idea to stay updated on any trail closures or restrictions before embarking on your journey.

Overall, the Tannehill Tramway Trail offers a beautiful and historically significant experience year-round. Whether you prefer the vibrant colors of spring, the mild temperatures of fall, or the tranquility of winter, there is always a suitable time to explore this unique trail and immerse yourself in the rich history of the area.


1. Wheelchair Accessible Parking: Designated parking spaces close to the trail entrance for easy access.
2. Paved Pathways: Smooth and level paved surfaces throughout the trail for wheelchair users.
3. Accessible Restrooms: Restroom facilities equipped with accessible features such as grab bars and wider doorways.
4. Wheelchair Accessible Picnic Areas: Picnic spots with accessible tables and seating arrangements.
5. Accessible Trailhead: An accessible entrance to the trail with ramps or level pathways.
6. Braille Signage: Trail signs with Braille text for visually impaired individuals.
7. Accessible Water Fountains: Water fountains at a suitable height for wheelchair users.
8. Assistance Animals Allowed: Accommodation for individuals with disabilities who rely on service animals.
9. Accessible Informational Materials: Trail maps, brochures, and other informational materials available in accessible formats such as large print or electronic versions.
10. Accessible Seating Areas: Benches or seating areas along the trail designed to accommodate wheelchair users.
11. Accessible Interpretive Displays: Displays with accessible features such as tactile elements or audio descriptions for individuals with visual impairments.
12. Accessible Trail Experiences: Opportunities for individuals with disabilities to participate in guided tours or programs tailored to their needs.
13. Accessible Transportation: Options for accessible transportation to and from the trail, such as accessible buses or shuttles.
14. Accessible Trail Events: Inclusive events organized on the trail that provide accommodations for individuals with disabilities.
15. Accessible Trail Amenities: Accessible amenities such as trash cans, recycling bins, and pet waste stations conveniently placed along the trail.

Safety Information

1. Slippery surfaces – Caution is advised due to potentially slippery surfaces along the trail.
2. Uneven terrain – Be aware of uneven terrain that may pose a tripping hazard.
3. Wildlife encounters – Exercise caution and keep a safe distance from any wildlife encountered on the trail.
4. Limited lighting – The trail may have limited lighting, so it is recommended to bring a flashlight or headlamp for visibility.
5. Poisonous plants – Stay alert for any poisonous plants along the trail and avoid contact.
6. Extreme weather conditions – Be prepared for extreme weather conditions such as heat, cold, or storms.
7. Trail maintenance – Stay updated on any trail maintenance activities that may temporarily affect accessibility or safety.
8. Limited cell phone reception – Expect limited or no cell phone reception along the trail.
9. Remote location – The trail is located in a remote area, so it is advisable to inform someone about your plans and expected return time.
10. Personal safety – Always prioritize personal safety and use common sense while hiking the Tannehill Tramway Trail.

Conservation Notes

The Tannehill Tramway Trail is a significant conservation area that is currently under the protection of various conservation organizations and government agencies. The trail is located within the Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park in Alabama, USA. It is recognized for its historical and ecological importance, making it a priority for conservation efforts.

The conservation status of the Tannehill Tramway Trail is considered to be well-maintained and protected. The trail is managed by the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, ensuring its preservation and sustainability. The park authorities have implemented various measures to safeguard the natural habitat and biodiversity along the trail.

The Tannehill Tramway Trail is home to a diverse range of plant and animal species, including several rare and endangered ones. Efforts have been made to restore and protect the native vegetation, ensuring the survival of these species. The conservation status of the trail also includes the preservation of the historical structures and artifacts that are present along the route, providing visitors with a glimpse into the area’s rich industrial past.

Conservationists and park authorities work together to monitor and manage the trail, ensuring that it remains a safe and sustainable environment for both wildlife and visitors. Regular assessments are conducted to identify any potential threats or issues that may arise, allowing for prompt action to be taken. The conservation status of the Tannehill Tramway Trail reflects the commitment to preserving its natural and historical significance for future generations to enjoy and appreciate.

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