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

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backpacking
9 days ago

Beautiful!

hiking
15 days ago

10/10 would hike again.

hiking
27 days ago

on Brissy Ridge

hiking
1 month ago

Nice trail for families and pets. Well kept and clean.

mountain biking
1 month ago

Pretty rad trail. Challenging for new riders. Plenty of jumps, rocks, roots, logs and other obstacles

2 months ago

Great trail. Went early and it wasn’t crowded! Took my dog and we had a great walk!

I would rate this trail an overall moderate one. Nothing too difficult, beautiful views around the lake! It's a great trail for training or trail running. The only strenuous part I'd say is the foot traffic only portion of Brissy ridge. Overall decent hike, wish there more views.

Great hike with a few great mountain overlooks. Good elevation challenge in the first few miles and enjoyable length. The loop spans multiple trails in this order: Chesnut Knob, Sawtooth Trail, Upper CCC, Little River Trail, Raven Rock Trail, and River Trail. There were a lot of gnats though.

3 months ago

Great trail. My only issue was a little confusion right at the end as to where my car was because there apparently were two parking areas. Not that big a deal, but after you are hot and tired you don’t really feel like not knowing where you parked. But great hiking trail!

Completed a full 7.5 mile loop with a group of 5, varying in experience and fitness level. The only “view” was of the lake, no waterfalls or anything of the like. Still a beautiful hike. Overall a good experience, will do it again.

mountain biking
3 months ago

Great mtb trail. Will definitely come back for more fun. I certainly wouldn’t consider it to be the hardest for cycling or hiking. Rigid or hardtail welcome on this single track.

We chose this trail as a conditioning trail and the following review is written from the point of view of a backpacker carrying a 30+ lb pack. Fee is now $5.00 per person and you pay at the toll booth, it was early when we arrived and no one was in the booth but they have envelopes to fill out, bring a pen. Started the trails at shelter 5 and 6. Looked like there was a nature walk for kids going on when we started with a Ranger (think this is pretty cool). We walked past them and started up the Sulpher Springs trail. Very shortly the trail came to the first lake we would encounter for the day. Saw a turtle and a lady fall (wear proper shoes guys, there is a lot of rocks and loose debris on the trail). Continuing up the trail we made our way to the waterfall at the dam and the rock tower. Really nice pictures here, the temperature was nice and cool. There are some rock steps that go up to the trail above you that will put you back on track. Once we scurried up those I was feeling good and doubting that this trail was ranked correctly at hard as nothing we had done so far was difficult but my curiosity was soon sated. The incline began and we started up, over rocks, through two streams (very easy crossings), back over rocks, up some more rock steps, leaned against a few trees, and continued on. When I finally came to the top I held up a tree for a good 15 min before the forest sounds finally drowned out the pounding of my heart. (I want to take a moment to mention this trail is very thin at points. Be careful with your four legged pals and children as you go up this section. There is a decent drop on the right side down into a ravine). After a quick break, afore mentioned, we took Fire Tower trail and made our way down this down and back trail. Once we arrived at the burned down fire tower we stopped, had a snack and a decent break. Saw a lizard that was too quick to get a picture of and not much else. Wandered our way back down the trail and picked up Kanuga. Not much here to see until you get to the lake. I do want to mention there are some back country camp sites around the lake. I didn't really venture into them all but there did appear to be enough room for two tents. There is a grated fire pit and a picnic table in the two we did see. As you wander around the lake take a look at the contrast of the evergreens and deciduous trees behind the lake. You are at a vantage point where you can see the difference in colors and it is awesome. The water was really clear as it hadn't rained in a few days but it didn't appear that big fish were not biting as everyone I spoke to only said they were catching a lot of little ones. As you continue over the dam and walk across the little foot bridge (grates) look left down the spillway. There is a lot of debris here and you can imagine the awesome power of water that moved those huge pieces of wood. Walking on around the lake I stumbled upon a couple of more lizards and spotted a duck box, recently put up it appeared, on the far end of the lake. Didn't seem to be much duck activity but maybe I wasn't looking hard enough. Next came Pipsissewa trail then Brissy Ridge. At the trail marker we stopped and had lunch and another breather then chose to do the easier side of Brissy Ridge as energy was beginning to fail a little. Down Brissy Ridge the trail opened up and I did get a couple decent pictures of the vista. These were the only ones I was able to get while on the trails. Down Brissy Ridge we went and were dumped into a parking lot. Saw a nice Subaru WRX (YOHB?) in the parking lot but thought for a minute we had lost the trail. If you feel the same way let me save you a little bit of worry, go diagonally left across the parking lot and you should pick up the Sulpher Springs trail. Wandered down to the next parking lot and kept on going. Down hill we continued, passing a tiny black snake and a bunny. Singing is how we finished the trail off as energy was waning and we needed to keep going. All in all the trail is good, I only gave it a 4 star due to the lack of vista views. I was surprised by the amount of people and would expect this area to be highly trafficked during summer. Take plenty of water. Wear the right shoes. Take snacks. Enjoy the hike.

hiking
4 months ago

6 year old, 3 year old and I hiked the trail and had an awesome time. Some good steep hills but my 3 year old did fine.

This hike is definitely a workout. The first 1-1.5 miles are pretty much a non-stop incline. After that it’s pretty much smooth sailing, with a few short inclines that sufficiently get your heart pumping. Took my dog and she loved it. It was definitely a workout for her too! We added an extra .4 miles to go to the Chestnut Knob overlook. The view itself is pretty good, but there’s not really anywhere to sit comfortably and no shade. And because we went on a fairly warm day, the sun was a little too much. Other than the overlook, there’s a few spots with some decent views, and places to sit and enjoy them. As other mentioned there are a ton of burnt trees, so a little dreary but nothing too bad. Overall I’m giving this hike a 4 because it’s a great workout, but it’s just short of a 5 because of the lackluster views.

Wonderful walk

Very nice! The area around the lake was very pleasant. $5/person, many parking areas, well-marked trails.

hiking
6 months ago

We did Chestnut Knob, followed by Sawtooth , Upper CCC , and Little River Trail. A total of about 7.9 miles with over 1,400 ft elevation. Great workout for the day!

Great challenging day hike.

on Brissy Ridge

6 months ago

Well-maintained, easy to navigate. Most of the trail is pretty moderate, with steep climbs at the end of the trail. I hopped off on the Kanuga trail, looped around the reservoir, and took the Pipsissewa trail to get back to Brissy Ridge. These trails were far less crowded, had some decent views since all the leaves were off the trees, and added a few more ascents and descents on the hike.

hiking
7 months ago

Sunny, windy winter hike at 39 degrees. The Brissy Ridge Trail is easy until the last twenty minutes when you reach several steep ascents (hiking trail clockwise). My dog and I enjoy the cardio, so it was a nice surprise at the end. The trail is a little rooty in some areas, otherwise, a clear trail. I give it four stars because there isn't a spectacular view of any kind.

mountain biking
7 months ago

Great trail, it has everything. The climb from the Pinnacle Rice parking lot is just about 5 miles all uphill. The descent is challenging or thrilling depending on your definition of fun! I’m in-between, probably ride the brakes too much but I ride to enjoy another ride!

7 months ago

Fun hike. I think it is a little harder than moderate. Nice views. Great for families.

I have driven this beautiful section of the Parkway many times. I have also hiked some of the trails along the road several times. Great views.

on Brissy Ridge

hiking
7 months ago

Great hike for my dog and I. Light traffic on a Monday morning, and took about an hour to complete. Cool ridge trail with pretty views.

hiking
8 months ago

You can see some decent views once the leaves start falling, but there are no 'AHA' moments, unless you take the connectors up to North Lake(you should do this). Also, if you hike it clockwise, you hit the steep part last and it's always longer than I remember.

hiking
8 months ago

It's Ok! I would definitely hike again.

on Brissy Ridge

camping
8 months ago

Mostly quite level, or evenly graded. only a few roots and rocks. Beautiful Fall foliage!

hiking
9 months ago

Done this trail 100 plus times..great for hiking or running..very easy..a couple of small hills..just wish Greensboro could afford to put trash cans at least at the trail ends..i wouldn't expect the highly motivated city employees to empty them(maybe the City could contract that out..like mowing city owned grass)..but that would be nice.

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