Uwharrie/Dutchman's Creek Trail Loop is a 23 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Mount Gilead, North Carolina that features a river and is rated as moderate. 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
The trailheads are on Hwy 24/27 about 10 miles west of Troy NC. There is a parking lot for several dozen cars. In addition to the hiking trails there are also dedicated biking trailheads in the same location. The Ranger office for the Uwharrie National Forest is located a few miles east of Troy on Hwy 24/27 and is open Monday through Friday. These trails are on USFS land and are more 'wild' than NC State Park trails. There are many campsites scattered along this loop and camping is allowed about anywhere if you can't find one you like. Mountaintops are wooded and there are not any great views but you do get the occasional glimpse through the forest - especially in the winter. Unlike NC State Parks, where you are strongly encouraged to stay ONLY on the trails, this area allows (encourages) people to wander through the forest so there are lots of spurs to nowhere. For the most part, the trails are blazed well. There were a few times I had more than one choice and had to search a little for the blazes but it is still pretty hard to get lost. Some of the uphill/downhill sections of the trail are much more direct than most NC State Park trails.
I spent 3 days on the trail over Christmas 16. The trails are well marked, very rocky so ware good shoes. At night the forest was very quiet, kinda creepy but I had a great time.
Great time! Well marked trail!
The trail was nice but I did get turned around a little on the upper part of the Uwharrie, above the loop. It was a cold night to camp but very peaceful! It wasn't very scenic but I loved that there were camping spots just about every mile. I'd do it again!
Hiked loop 12-5-15 in 6 hours. Trail had many wet spots. Trail markers are scarce in many areas. Otherwise a beautiful hike.
Well marked. Nice camp sites next to the creek.
Friend lost his boxer on July 4th in Uwharrie:
My partner and I took his two girls and my two chihuahuas hiking on this trail. There had been severe weather recently and we knew Morrow Mountain's trails were closed, but when we called the ranger station we were informed that Dutchman trail was in good shape.
It was a bit of a frightening hike for a time because of the storm damage. We were about six miles in when we hit damaged areas and we had to find ways around fallen trees. At one point we came to a cleared area where a tornado had obviously touched down, the ground was swept clean and all the trees were just gone and the trees remaining trees were bent in crazy angles. In the process of going around fallen trees, we got turned around somehow and wound up lost in the woods for a few hours. Once we emerged, we considered it a lesson learned and will print out more detailed maps than we found at the ranger station in the future.
It's still one of my top hikes though because it put our abilities to the test and his girls were troopers through it all even if they were scared for a bit. As for the two Chihuahuas Who Hike, they did great and enjoyed being carried for a random break here and there.
I can't wait to do this trail in its full and not just wander around for miles, lost in the woods.
My parents and I did the Dutchman Creek Loop trail (in about 6 mi on Dutchman's and then back to trailhead on Uwharrie trail 5mi). Both trails were well marked and maintained. We found the Uwharrie the more challenging of the two trails. We did the hike with 25lb backpacks. We camped at Big Island Creek with our hammocks. There was plenty of water in April to filter. Flowers were just starting to bloom and would probably full out in a week. Would love to hike more of the Uwharrie in the future!!
Hiked this beautiful trail a couple of years ago.with the Fayetteville Area Outdoor meetup. It was somewhat strenuous at times and the trail wasn't marked well, especially if you're not familiar with it but maybe they have repainted the markings recently.