Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail

EASY 8 reviews
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Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail is a 7.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Orange Beach, AL that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

7.5 miles 45 feet Out & Back

dog friendly

wheelchair friendly

kid friendly


mountain biking

road biking

trail running





wild flowers


old growth

All trails are paved with nice restroom building, butterfly pavillion, swings and seats for resting. Not real long trail but enjoyable trails. The fire damage is gone and many improvements have been made. This trail has many trails combined. Bicycles can get 20 miles when you ride all of the connected trails. There are at least 5 trail heads. Many places to stop and enjoy the scenery. But, the best thing about this trail is the wildlife. You can see deer, foxes, coyotes, many varieties of snakes, alligators, shore birds, turtles, birds of prey ( bald eagles and osprey), rabbits, and possum. The list is endless.

2 months ago

6 months ago

This is actually the Rosemary Dunes Trail that is part of the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail in Gulf State Park. There are several trails to choose from!

10 months ago

Great trail

11 months ago

Awesome pet friendly, well maintained trails. This will be our third year snow birding down in Gulf Shores. We walk every one of these trails. Spanish moss cascading down decade old trees are just one of the many sights to see. See you in Feb/Mar '16

2 years ago

Well maintained paved trails. It's a much used park but everyone very friendly.I loved the maps availability at the trail heads. I saw two armadillo and Osprey. I walked the Catman and Rosemary Dunes Trails and can't wait to go back and try the others. I'm sure the butterfly garden is beautiful in the spring.

road biking
2 years ago

There are about 12 miles of paved trails now and more coming. I ride this trail everyday and it is wonderful, no roadway crossings all controlled acess foot and bike traffic only. Five trail heads for easy acess, center point has bathroom and water.

road biking
3 years ago

This is an amazing trail and I am so fortunate to live within 1/2 mile of two trail heads. There are 5 trail heads. The wildlife is the most amazing part of this trail. The variety is unparallelled. There are snakes (I videoed a 7 foot rattlesnake on Rattlesnake Ridge!) Turtles, deer, foxes, coyotes, Bald eagles, osprey, shore birds, rabbits, alligators, and many more. Each season brings a new species out of the woods onto the trail. I ride at least 2-3 times per week and can get 20 miles in easily. Watch out or Snowbirds (people) in the winter...they can be hard of hearing and walk all over the lanes. Really give them warning when riding.

3 years ago

We always bike or hike this trail when we're in Orange Beach, Alabama. It's a well maintained state park of paved trails. It's perfect for hiking, joggers, biking, and for just getting out and enjoying the natural low country scenery. Lots of seating and swings for resting and reflecting. It's not a real long series of trails but still a nice place to bike or walk. The main trail head is off Hwy 161 off Canal Road where you can pick up trail maps and park. On one of the marked trails, "Rosemary Dunes" you can sometimes spot "Lefty" the local alligator sunning himself on this trail. Worth visiting if you're in the area and would like to get out and enjoy a little exercise while in the area.

Recently visited trail in September 2014 and "Lefty" the local alligator has had babies. Saw one small gator sunning on the bank. Several posts of sightings by staff of pygmie rattlesnakes, also in the Roesemary Dunes trail area.

They've also added a new trail called Cotton Dunes which is about a mile or mile and a half long. It exits out to highway 161 near Publix. The park really needs some rainfall. Some of the swampy areas where the gators reside were really low.Pretty dry. A local realtor is doing some kind of development near the Rosemary Dunes trailhead on the beach side highway. I've heard that they've worked out an agreement with the park to develop or possibly fund some new trails in that area as a prerequisite to doing any development. Hope this proves to be a good thing for the trail.