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#2 of 279 state parks in Kentucky

Best trails in Natural Bridge State Park

1,675 Reviews
Looking for a great trail in Natural Bridge State Park, Kentucky? AllTrails has 13 great hiking trails, trail running trails, forest trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Ready for some activity? There are 8 moderate trails in Natural Bridge State Park ranging from 0.8 to 10.7 miles and from 728 to 1,335 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
Description

This park has a pool, restaurant, lodging and more.

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Map of trails in Natural Bridge State Park
Park information
Contact
606-663-2214
Helpful links
Top trails (13)
#1 - Natural Bridge and Battleship Rock Trail
Natural Bridge State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(396)
Length: 4.5 mi • Est. 1 h 48 m
This trail was built in the 1880s by the Lexington and Eastern Railroad. It is the most popular trail for hiking to the Natural Bridge. Beginning near the gift shop, the trail gently climbs .25 mile to the trailhead behind Hemlock Lodge. From here, you will see the steepest part of the trail before you, but at the top of the limestone steps it levels off. There are five trail shelters along this trail, three of which were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) during the 1930s. The trail climbs over 400-feet through an impressive forest of hemlock, tulip tree, white pine, and thickets of rhododendron. It ends beneath the span of the Natural Bridge. Access to the top of the bridge is through a natural fracture on the other side of the arch. Elevation change of 420 feet. Show more
#2 - Original Natural Bridge Trail
Natural Bridge State Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(313)
Length: 1.2 mi • Est. 45 m
#3 - Pinch-em Tight to Hanson's Point
Natural Bridge State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(262)
Length: 5.1 mi • Est. 2 h 31 m
#4 - Whittleton Branch Trail
Natural Bridge State Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(175)
Length: 2.5 mi • Est. 1 h 14 m
#5 - Natural Bridge via Rock Garden Trail and Devil's Gulch
Natural Bridge State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(97)
Length: 2.5 mi • Est. 1 h 27 m
#6 - Original, Laurel Ridge and Rock Trail Loop
Natural Bridge State Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(71)
Length: 2 mi • Est. 1 h 14 m
#7 - Red River Gorge End-to-End Trail
Natural Bridge State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(34)
Length: 10.7 mi • Est. 5 h 31 m
#8 - Balanced Rock Trail
Natural Bridge State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(65)
Length: 1.5 mi • Est. 1 h 11 m
#9 - Natural Bridge via Low Gap and Rock Garden Trail
Natural Bridge State Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(91)
Length: 2.8 mi • Est. 1 h 37 m
#10 - Sand Gap Loop
Natural Bridge State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(76)
Length: 9.5 mi • Est. 4 h 42 m
Our most challenging trail, Sand Gap requires 4-6 hours to complete. There are no shortcuts once youve started, so allow adequate time to make this trip before dark. Sand Gap Trail begins near the upper end of the Balanced Rock Trail about 500 feet from the top of Natural Bridge. For the next 3.5 miles, Sand Gap follows an old logging road and is easy to moderate walking along the ridgetop. The first section of this trail is a part of the Sheltowee National Recreation Trail. At approximately 1.5 miles from the beginning, Sand Gap Trail makes a sharp right turn and the Sheltowee Trace Trail splits off of the Sand Gap Trail and heads south. Here you will turn right continuing on the Sand Gap trail which heads northeast. About 3.5 miles from the beginning, the trail descends steeply into Lower Hood Branch. It will level out in the vicinity of a bog, then turn right across a bridge and begin to meander below the cliffs through rhododendron thickets. At about 6.5 miles, the trail descends to a bridge over the Lower Hood Branch. From here, the trail climbs up the side of the valley for about .25 mile following a skid road built by loggers in the 19th century. As you climb this section, watch carefully for the sharp left turn where the trail leaves this old road. From here, youll wind around a couple of ridges then follow a fairly level grade for about 1.5 miles to the Hood Branch Trail. You will take a left onto the Hoods Branch Trail and walk downhill for approximately .25 mile which leads to the sky lift and miniature golf parking area. Elevation change of 450 feet.Show more
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