Finding Magic at the Key Hole

Girls let their imaginations take flight at the Key Hole.

Girls let their imaginations take flight at the Key Hole.

Hiking at Ross Marble Quarry Area is akin to walking through a fairytale. When you arrive at the Key Hole, you are sure to believe the place holds magical secrets of a time long ago.

Twelve young hikers discovered the magic of the Key Hole on Saturday at the fall Girls Outside hike for first, second, and third graders. Three women hikers guided their journey.

The day was warm, and plenty of water was needed to replenish thirsty hikers. The girls enjoyed spotting caterpillars, butterflies, and the changing of the colors on the trees along Imery’s Trail at Ijam’s Ross Marble Quarry natural area.

Valuable lessons on “leave no trace” were shared to help the girls grow to become responsible stewards of the environment who know the importance of having minimal impact on the natural area.

We also found the “pink East Tennessee marble” and talked about how the limestone was used in building many prominent national buildings and monuments, leading Knoxville to once be known as “Marble City.”

To view more photos from Saturday’s hike, visit our photo gallery on Facebook.

The next Girls Outside is planned for October 26 for girls in Grades 4-6 on part of Knoxville’s Urban Wilderness South Loop near Anderson School. The hike begins at 1 p.m. sharp (note earlier start time) and goes to 4 p.m. The hike features a creek, woods, changing leaves and possibly even some fall wildflowers. Exact hike meeting spot will be shared closer to the hike date. This will be an easy to moderate hike, which we will take at a slow pace, and is approximately 2-3 miles. To join this hike, register online by Oct. 23. Guides for this hike are Kelly Sturner (lead), Trena Paulus and Catherine Crawley.

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