Explore Carl - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Carl Map

Wonderful trails with so much to see both man-made and natural. Fun to explore. Always clean and well taken care of. Beautiful area.

road biking
20 days ago

this trail was beautiful and relaxing. It's very peaceful and well kept. Only issue is that I assumed kid-friendly meant flat, which is not so at all and took my still-using-training-wheels kids down the trail and the hills made it stressful, mainly for worrying, but I got extra exercise and overall was a great trip. I would definitely do it again, walking for sure though.

pretty little, shady trail along the creek and perfect for dogs (and humans) in the heat/humidity. we walked along the creek to check out the group camps and canoe launches and retraced the trail back to stay near the water. lots of places to let the dogs cool off/hydrate in the creek all down the trail. it's a little taste of the mountains in the Piedmont.

30 days ago

Very pretty area, we do the trail several times a year. The best time to go is when the leaves change, very pretty.

Unless you are using it as an access point to the neuse trail, don't bother. Too confusing and tends to be rather trashed in spots.

Not worth the drive to to the trail.

The trail is usually clear with bridges over wash out and wet areas. I usually take my dog with me and they have to be leashed. Lots of beautiful views of the lake. Terrain is slightly hilly but not to the point of being strenuous. Vast majority of the trail is shaded so great for hotter weather and usually the lake has a breeze coming off the water. Bring bug spray if there's no breeze the biting flies and mosquitos can be a little persistent. There are benches spread out throughout the trail to take rest breaks. Bring water for drinking there is none on the trail.

One of my favorite places to walk. The new NCMA Park is beautifully designed and welcoming. Plenty of paths/trails to walk on even when it’s busy. And you get to look at art for free! Only issue right now is that there are no restrooms outside, so when the museum is closed there are no restrooms in the park. Hopefully that will be fixed soon.

Good trail to walk for exercise. Not a hiking trail per-se as it is paved more like a park trail, but great for walking and running. The back part of the trail near I-440 gets intense with some pretty big hills so be prepared. Great views of the lake and woods.

trail running
1 month ago

I love this trail! The trees are beautiful and the bridges add a nice touch. The trail is pretty shaded in the afternoon. There are a few steep hills that are a great end to a work out if that’s what you’re looking for. My doggies also love to walk on this trail! Perfect for fur babies.

Hiked this trail yesterday with my family. Met some really nice people along the trail. You’ll definitely work up a sweat on this one! The trail was very long and in my families opinion it was not worth the long walk to the tiny waterfall. We hike a lot in other states and have seen some amazing and very large waterfalls and this one happened to be a baby waterfall and for it being such a long walk 5 miles in and out it just didn’t seem worth it! It really wasn’t a waterfall looked like they placed a rock in the water and a stream of water just runs over it lol.

1 month ago

Great trail for all activities. Shady, toilets , birds and friendly users. Easy terrain but many hills.


Puppy was scared of the bridge, but what a great view!

Smith lake is a great mountain biking trail. Inside the all trails app, you can start record, and then it gives you a mapping function that you can follow to do the entire course, which is beginner intermediate an expert, for about eightMiles of riding.

Trail is nice, good condition. Didn't see many people which meant I ended up getting a lot of spiderwebs on me. There were some annoying flies that wouldn't leave me alone and I found some ticks on my dog, but DEET spray kept them off me.

I'd recommend going on a weekend so other people can eat the spiderwebs. Pretty area and cool view of the nuclear cooling tower. Better start running if you hear the sirens go off though, hah.

2 months ago

Best sunsets in Raleigh! This is a fun jog/hike that doesn’t take much time at all. Weekends are always more heavily trafficked but that just means more dogs to pet.

pretty boring trail. Thought I was getting a nice river walk, but the trail is seperated from the river by a thick row of trees so you don't get that river walk feel. Had meant to walk the whole length but got very bored with no interesting scenery and ended up turning around after just 3 miles. Busy little trail with lots of cyclists, walkers, and runners.

Nice views, not too busy mid afternoon. Bring bug spray the water causes mosquitoes.

Nice easy stretch of pavement for decent running without leaving the city. Easy parking at the soccer complex.

Just be mindful of all the biker

2 months ago

Towards the end of the trail was very confusing. Be sure to take a picture of the map at the parking area and compare to this map. Very easy and flat with some small hills. More endurance rather than strength.

Everything you could want. Awesome art indoors and out and trails! Loved this place.

mountain biking
3 months ago

Nice area, well maintained. appropriately marked with specific signage.
disappointed with the amount of sand on the trails. Even berms were made with sand and features concluded with sand. the Brown expert trail is the one too ride. and since I'm no expert I would encourage those with skills beyond beginner will find it nicely challenging

3 months ago

Walked this trail with my family. What an amazing place. The art is beautiful and the trails are very easy. Would suggest this place for anybody with a love of art or nature.

This was my first time to Raven Rock, Hiked to the falls, I'm a little out of shape but have done a good out of hiking in the past. I did a little bit more than just the loop and was about 5.2 miles right at 2 hrs with a few stops. Great hike if you want to get out there and see what this state has to offer but don't want to spend all day hiking. A few inclines in there but nothing very steep.

Great trail for distance running or biking but nothing too extravagant about this one. Perfect for dog walking.

Load More