Merchants Millpond State Park Trail is a 3.6 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Gatesville, NC 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 but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
Merchant's Millpond is a Cypress swamp/pond, primary access is by canoe or kayak. Cypress trees draped with Spanish Moss over calm duckweed-covered water... Turtles and birds everywhere!
Four stars because it's mostly quite beautiful, but some trails are a bit too overgrown for safety in a swampy, snakey, buggy area during the summer.
Great intro trail to hiking and backpacking. Our Scout Troop hikes this and the other trails at Merchant's Mill Pond State Park on a regular basis. We visit all year long, although the fall and winter are my favorites. During the late spring you need to prepare for red bugs (chiggers.) I also have some good snake pictures, mostly red bellied water snakes and black tree snakes. There are several options for camping and we will combine multiple trails to get a hike that matches our desired length.
Great canoe in camping then take a nice quiet hike through the woods. Looks like a great place to find some large largemouth but didn't bring a pole.
A favorite area to hike. Beautiful cypress trees. Canoe to the camp sites and hike from there. Canoe back the next day. You can rent a canoe, there. Alligators have been spotted in the Millpond so always be alert. Lots of wildlife.
If you go in the summer, be sure to take appropriate precautions with insects, especially ticks and chiggers. Take a mosquito net to help keep your sanity while hiking and at camp.
Almost every time I've hiked this trail I've camped and there always seems to be a Bobwhite calling throughout the night. That, along with the endless frog croaking (really something spectacular), make the atmosphere of the Millpond a very rare experience. There's nothing quite like it.
I love the far side of the bridge. There are a million crazy colors in the water.
It is a nice park. I have hiked every trail in the park except one. The park is centered around a beautiful cypress swamp and all the trails give at least some of it.
Another short trail, but there is a lot to see.
It is a beautiful cypress swamp. I have hiked about every trail in the park and loved it. All the trails have at least some cypress swamp scenery.
Whoa! it was exciting to find these swamps and estuaries in NC. The experience reminded me of my canoeing adventures around Louisiana as a young boy. The plant life and trees are stunning. The trails are well marked and well maintained. The facilities are spotless! And the rangers were helpful and generous. We enjoyed canoeing out to our campsite with a $20 all day (24 hour) canoe rental from the park. Lovely memories!
There are approximately 9 miles of hiking trails in this park. The Lassiter Trail, Coleman Trail, Bennetts Creek Trail and the Fire Trail. There is also camping at 7 campsites. These include family, group and back pack camping sites. There is also plenty of water ways to canoe on.