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Cheaha State Park is the pinnacle of natural beauty and awe in Alabama. Surrounded by the Talladega National Forest, this foothill of the Appalachian Mountains is the highest point in Alabama. Standing 2,407 ft. above sea level, it is no wonder why the local Creek Indians named this place Chaha, meaning high place. FREE Wireless Internet Access is available

hiking
4 days ago

Very fun trail even at only 1.4 miles. The steep climb to the top will let you know what kind of shape you're in and the views are nice, I enjoy it every time I hike it.

hiking
4 days ago

Short but enjoyable trail with some awesome views at the end of the trail.

There is a boardwalk that takes you all the way to Bald Rock or you can opt to take a dirt trail running beside the boardwalk. The scenic view from Bald Rock is nice but, as for a hiking trail not much to speak of. Nice place to take a short stroll.

I loved this trail. I downloaded an All Trails map since so many reviewers said they lost their way and had no issue. This trail has a lot of variety and is perfect part shade and part sun. Lots of boulders, pretty moss, lizards, butterflies and great views. There are a TON of places to camp, especially since you are on the Pinhoti for a lot of it. I did pull a tick off of me and my boyfriend while we were on it and also saw lots of Poison Oak so watch for that. McDill Point was worth it, recorded it with All Trails and clocked it at 7.6 miles. Was super quiet and hardly saw anyone, definitely recommend.

Relatively easy hike in general but was rough this summer. There’s some large trees down in the first mile of Nubbins that makes it nearly impassable in some sections but clears up if you keep on. I saw a lot of muscadine grapes near the trailhead and there were tons of small daisies in bloom. If you’re doing this in summer, wear long pants because there’s A LOT of ticks (my dog who is on medication carried home 56 in his fur 濫). Also be aware there’s some active predators in this area- many piles of scat full of fur and even found a partial boar skull.

Aside from that it’s pretty steady but not steep elevation gain. Pretty water falls and reliable streams. Some folks have mentioned to me the trail is hard to find nearer to its end but imo it’s pretty easy to stay on as there is good signage. Like somebody else mentioned I typically do Nubbins to Odum Scout to the Pinhoti as an in and out- I think it’s like 7 miles total? There’s a huge campsite at the Pinhoti Scout intersection that’s great for large groups.

Nice trail with several overlooks, plane wreckage, and rock formations. After reading some of the posts regarding lack of trail markings, I was fearful of being lost (we are new to hiking). So I bought a paper map, compass, and read many reviews and watched Youtube videos of the trail. In the end, all I needed was the AllTrails Pro app. The Pro app enables you to download maps so that you can view them offline. So, when you lose cell service, GPS allows you to see your location on the map as a blue dot in relation to the red trail outline.

We entered at the Cheaha trail head (a short way down the road from the general store at the top of the mountain). We decided to do the counter-clockwise route since I read that the Pinhoti portion of the loop is more strenuous. Not long into the hike we took a wrong turn (while still on the blue-blazed Pinhoti) and it ended at the road that leads down to the trail head (I looked on a map afterwards and it turns out that this is where the Pinhoti crosses the road and continues on north-east toward Georgia). So I consulted the AllTrails app and found our location (the blue dot that gives your current location) and just followed the trail back to the proper place and continued on. We got confused a couple of other times, but each time we consulted the app and got back on course. The Pinhoti side of the loop was especially narrow in some places with high grass crowding us on the trail, but the blue blazes kept us on track.

Because running the app (like running any other app) will cause the battery to drain as you hike, take a battery pack that will charge your phone when it gets low. Also, because there are so many rocks and roots on the trail, I recommend hiking shoes/boots. Our feet were sore afterwards even though we both wore Merrell Moab 2 shoes, which have soles made for this type of terrain. I guess if you are not doing the entire loop in one day, this may not be a problem.

Be sure to record your hike in the app so that at the end, after you stop recording, the app will provide distance traveled, calories burned (if you set your height and weight in your profile), elevation gain, and a red-line exact map of your route (including your detours). We walked exactly 9 miles (we walked out to the McDill overlook and to several others). I would do this hike again; I think a fall or winter hike would provide a cool, different perspective.

Very pretty hike with great views along the way! Drove all the way from Florida and back in the same day for this trail and it was worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

Paige Jenkins nailed this...probably not for everyone even if the trail is mostly easy.

I think this was the trail I did, but I honestly don’t know such were the markings (or lack thereof). So much so, I decided to just set my timer and simply turn around when it went off...didn’t want to get lost.

With that said, it was a great hike with a few scenic spots. It appears beetles have attacked the pine trees.

Beautiful trail!

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful trail! Easy enough to take your children on the trail with you!

If you want to get to the summit of the mountain, none of these maps are correct. Here are the directions to do that: 1) park at the lake trail ($5 fee) and hike up to the state park. 2) walk down the road past a small waterfall on the left and just before you get to the pool at the lodge 3) take a left into the campground loop and look for the trailhead markers with the blue yeti! This "Leave No Trace" trail will take you right to the top observation tower and picnic area! Views are better from other overlooks, which you can access in the park.

The lake trail was VERY well marked (to the point I figured they'd hired some vandal to do penance and just "mark every tree, rock and dirt patch with blue".) The trail is like other reviewers said: steep and rocky but beautiful!

This trail needs traffic—foot traffic! It is close to being overwhelmed in sections by weeds. This is a lovely track but quite rugged with roots and rocks, and a couple of challenging ascents. Would not recommend for children under 12. Old timers like me need sturdy footwear and dual trekking poles.

My family of three set out at the Cheaha trailhead, intending a moderate 6+ mile trek and almost ended up spending the night, unprepared, on this trail. We set out in plenty of time to complete by dark, missed the turn/connector, and ended up hiking ~12 miles, the last of it in the dark and on an abandoned roadbed (with multiple downed trees requiring detours; marked FS 589), gaining 2000 feet elevation. We encountered the connector in the rain and that might be why we missed it--also the connector was not marked at all. This trail is NOT well marked--we almost lost the blue trail several times. I was seriously worried we would end up dehydrated and hypothermic, even at the end of May, after spending the night on the trail.

Remember to take three times as much water as you think you will need, plastic bag for cell phone or electronics needed to mark bearings, backup phone battery, rain gear, bug spray, flashlight, high-energy food, personal first aid kit and a backup map/compass, just in case you end up on a different (longer) trail with no cell phone service. Long pants are essential, as there is a LOT of poison oak on the trail. There was little water. Make sure someone knows your intentions and the trail you intend to hike before you set out. If you get off the trail, notify someone about your location in case things go terribly wrong.

The trail had some pretty flora (gooseberries, wildflowers, mountain laurel, oak leaf hydrangeas and more), but the trek is very difficult and only for those who are good with maps and who have strong legs and hearts. Plan for slow speed, as the elevation change is significant.

At the end (9pm), this felt more like a death march than a pleasant family hike. I will not let this happen again.

Beautiful views! We were there mid week and were the only ones. I'd say moderate hike given the steep initial and final descent / ascent.

hiking
2 months ago

Short but very pretty trail. The view at the lookout was really spectacular!!! I’m glad me and my husband made this little pit stop on our cross country road trip.

Loved this trail. Parts were not marked very well but other than that it is a perfect day hike trail.

Very short and easy hike. We did this one and another one to make it a little longer hike for us.
The climb back up may be a little workout if you don't get out much. Definitely worth it. Nice views.
AND PLEASE..... IF YOU HAVE DOGS, TAKE POOP BAGS AND PICK UP AFTER YOUR DOG.

One of my favorite trails. Steep climb back to parking, prepare to be winded.

hiking
4 months ago

This was a beautiful spot. I hiked this with my two boys, under 10, and it was no problem. We hiked down the cliff on the rocks and they loved it. There were a couple of spots that required some careful planning, but still pretty safe. A couple cool tunnels or caves in the rocks and lots of beautiful pictures.

Easy walk to the scenic point. The view is beautiful. I took my two boys, under 10, and we went off trail and climbed several rocks along the side of the mountain. It was a great time.

Good trail well marked with good water. About half of the trail follows the pinhoti so the blue blazes light your path. When you get off the pinhoti just follow the signs and stay on the well beaten path and you should be fine. The trail passes by the out and back trail to McDill Point. It is worth the extra 1 mike out and back to take a gander. All in all it’s more like eight miles so bring a snack and water. I used most of my water cooking for my son and Myself but I had a sawyer filtration system on hand. There is a plane crash to see on the McDill trail.

hiking
4 months ago

Short, easy hike with a wonderful view at the end! Highly recommend this trail if you’re looking for a quick, non strenuous trail

great hike for kids. Just dont let them get too close to the edge! Beautiful view!

It as my first time to hike this loop. Fortunately, I have a good sense of direction and a serviceable map of the Cheaha Wilderness Area which I printed from the USDA website beforehand. The Cave Creek section of the trail was poorly marked. I never saw a sign near the Trail Head or the Connector Trail. At one point I wasn't sure what trail I was on. Was I still on Cave Creek or had I pushed past it, moving on to the Nubbin Creek or Odum Scout Trail by then? . My map did not reflect what I was seeing and because of no signage, I had no way to verify my position. Stumbling upon a trail intersection is not good when there are no markings telling me what trail was what. All I knew is that if I took the trail that was heading generally west, I would eventually run into the Pinhoti. I never saw any signage for Cave Creek until I came across another trail intersection aprox a mile from the Pinhoti. Once you get to the Pinhoti, everything is gravy. This trail is wonderfully marked with blue blazes and metal tags, a welcome contrast to Cave Creek. Despite Cave Creek challenging my old Boy Scout skills, I had a wonderful time. And the Pinhoti serves up one gorgeous view after another. I can't wait to go back.

hiking
5 months ago

This was my first time to hike this trail. When I walked to the trailhead from the parking lot I took a wrong turn! I turned right and ended up on the Pinhoti headed away from the loop. I hiked a few miles out and back in to the trailhead and decided - what the heck - I came to hike the Cave Creek Trail so I'm going to do it. I proceeded taking the trail south toward three o'clock in the loop - I would say this side of the hike was easy. I was able to move fairly quickly. The scenery changes dramatically on the "back side" - several areas when on the actual Pinhoti required finding the blazes. When I decide to hike this loop again I will dig the backside in on the front stretch. Great views on the backside.

hiking
5 months ago

Lookout was incredible!

hiking
5 months ago

Good hike beginning is very steep leaving a steep hike out. Great views at the mountains edge.

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