Explore the most popular trail running trails in Kisatchie National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

hiking
7 days ago

I did this trail as a day and it was more intense than I expected but still not bad. there are some areas where it seems a bit over grown and a few areas where its hard to tell what direction to go. 4G coverage and LTE every once in a while on the trail. I would recommend doing this trail in the cooler months of the year. mosquitos weren't a problem but I still brought insect repellant and sunscreen. walking sticks help a lot on this trail. I don't know to recommend doing the road walk before or after. I started from the northern trail head and ended at the southern trail head. the second half of the trail had a lot of steep ups. while the first had a lot of gradual downward inclines. I recommend starting from the southern trail head so you have steep downs instead of steep up. that just seems like it would be easier. its hard to go on these hikes and pay attention to everything thats around you because you spend most of the time looking don to watch where you step. try to look up every once in a while and find a trail marker. they don't stand out to well but they're, there.if you think your getting lost do not keep going forward turn around and carefully retract your steps until you find the trail then asses the situation. bring a backpack with plenty of water. at least 3 liters per person, walking sticks, bug spray sunglasses, and do this in cooler temps. not 93 degrees and humid.

The AllTrails map for this area is not actually the place where the old WWII camp is. The allTrails map indicates parking, camping, trails and ATV recreation area. The old camp is actually closer to the entrance on the left side of the road.
Get a map of trails from the parking area and go back to the entrance if you want to see any of the ramains of the old camp.

hiking
24 days ago

This is a question, not a review:

I plan to solo hike one way through with my dog, that being said my car will be at one end and I'll end up at the other. Is there anyone available to return hikers to their cars at the starting point?

nature trips
1 month ago

Went yesterday and had a blast on the trail . Got to see lots of wildlife and we had trail just about to ourselves! Do it again every chance I get ! The dog loved it too!

backpacking
1 month ago

Beautiful trail but no water on the southern side. We hiked for over 4.5 miles with no suitable water, only mud holes.

hiking
1 month ago

This is one of my favorite trails in the state! It's great for a simple day hike, or for a weekend backpacking trip when you hike it with the Carloine Dormon. as other's have said, the water situation is scarce, but you can easily carry enough for the day.

horseback riding
1 month ago

I didn’t ride a horse on this trail. The interactive map for KNF says that the trail is open to pack and saddle. I’m assuming this means horseback riding. Looking at the pictures and some of the comments it doesn’t appear that horses use this trail. Are there signs saying whether horses are either allowed or forbidden?

backpacking
2 months ago

Great trail. plenty of water when I hiked it. Very well marked.

hiking
2 months ago

Fun time trying out light backpack/hammock/water filtration. Had a huge storm blow over Friday night then the next day it never stopped raining. The temps dropped in the high 30s and wound up pulling myself off the trail at the end and walking forestry road back to the trail head. All in all it was 24 miles of wet walking. Trail angel showed up 1.5 miles from my car. Brice a corrections officer picked me up off of twin bridge road back to the trail head. When I sat in his car and he started driving to the left I finally saw what I had been looking for: a wild horse just hanging out. Would absolutely recommend this as a first hike/run up to a longer trail.

hiking
2 months ago

This is a pretty hike. Well marked. We did a day hike - 3 miles in and back. Some of it is beautiful - some not - when we got to the forest road area - there was what looks like logging - cleared areas of trees. - which caused standing trees to fall in the bad weather over the weekend. Lots of marshy areas - be sure to wear waterproof hiking boots

hiking
2 months ago

did the 30 miles in 3 days 2 nights sleeping in hammocks. amazing hike lost the trail a few times and was a bitter muddy. Awesome time though will plan another trip

hiking
3 months ago

Mid March. First timer from West Monroe. Blazes were marked well and often. I love that there’s mile markers every 1/2 mile. Parked at Valentine lake, paid 2 nights, set my tent up, then hitch hiked to Woodworth. Hiked 2 hours til dark and set up camp at mile marker 18. Heard wolves howling a couple times at night. Next morning, around mile 16, I saw a red wolf. Very pretty. Then hiked all the way to my basecamp at Valentine. Actual hiking time was about 7.5-8 hours. Took a wrong turn at the 488 parking area. Didn’t realize to cross the highway at first. Thanks to all who maintain the trail.

Well marked and beautiful. We were a group of 4 who started at FS 212 and hiked 20 miles. We had a car on the other end at the Lake Valentine Rec area. We did it in 2 nights, started by 5 Friday and were out around noon Sunday.
Such a fun, great weekend that got us out of the city but no long drive. Must do for any louisiana outdoor lover!!

hiking
3 months ago

Completed a small section of the trail with my 10 year old son and blue heeler over the weekend. We had a blast! The weather was absolutely perfect. We started on the south side of Castor Plunge at the entrance just NW of FS 212. Our plan was to hike in set up camp and hike back out the following morning. We hiked in to the bridge at the Long Branch creek bottom crossing (approximately 3.6 miles or so from the Jeep). It was gorgeous! We took our time hiking in, exploring and taking breaks to play in the creeks. Lots of water in this section to filter for cooking water. Parts of the trail were muddy but overall the trail was nice and very well marked. We definitely got a good workout with our packs. Would be much easier with a lighter load.
We loved the spot where we camped. Lots of good clear spots in this area to set up camp. Several rock fire rings already present. We wanted a little more privacy off the trail, so put up tent on the other side of the creek. Picked up a few ticks :/, but the mosquitoes were not too bad. The barred owls and spring peepers put on quiet a concert calling for us that night by the fire and all thru the night. My little boy really enjoyed playing in the creek and exploring for critters.
Hiked back out the next morning with less breaks, made it back much faster. The wild azaleas were blooming, still a little early for the dogwoods. Only saw a few blooming on the drive down Twin Bridges. Was hoping to hear some wild turkeys gobbling. Awesome trip and bonding time. Especially since we had no phone service where we set up camp. Nice to unplug! We did not hear a car the entire time and only ran into a few other folks. Not sure the app recorded my track coming back out correctly, service was in and out. It does not look right on my recording and some of the pictures are not in the location where I took them. But overall it was a huge help and enjoy being able to save pics and comments. We will definitely be back. Planning a longer hike to complete more of the trail.

nice Trail just wish it was longer I'm didn't go on the road

4 months ago

First more serious hike. The parts where the trail became uncertain, there was always a marker close by. Some of the hills were fairly difficult, but overall was a moderate hike. Beautiful, not entirely well maintained, however nothing was an issue with getting through the trail.

Great day hike! I will be back!

backpacking
7 months ago

Beautiful trail. Great for beginners!

backpacking
7 months ago

Beautiful trail! Easy to follow, with moderately challenging landscapes. Perfect for a one night stay back packing trail.

trail running
7 months ago

Nice Loop to run if camping at Lake Kincaid Campground

hiking
8 months ago

Pretty fun trail, I don't recommend hiking it in the summer.. alot of trashed campsites and possible hobos on the way so be aware.

trail running
8 months ago

This trail has awesome potential, just needs some love. I've been clearing for the last few weeks and have about 3.5 miles of it cleaned up. This trails gonna be awesome when it's done!

off road driving
8 months ago

Absolutely amazing! If you enjoy atv trail riding then you must visit this trail. I rode the trail on my 300ex and i would recommend using a sport quad like that, although any atv would work

hiking
8 months ago

Neat trail 5.5 mile that wraps around one of the lakes. There’s another trail “Lost Lady” you’ll see at the end of the dam that’s about 2 miles. It’s difficult with hills. Both trails were nice.

Good trail. Did it with two kids and a friend. Not a lot of water right now so bring plenty.

backpacking
8 months ago

Hiked the Backbone trail again last week with my daughter. this was her first overnight backpacking trip. We only spent one night on trail but it was great fun. Didn't see much wildlife and temps were in the high 80's during the day but dropped quickly after the sun went down. Other than that it was the same os my first review below.

backpacking
9 months ago

Pretty solid trail for what it is. The water is very limited for half of the loop so bring plenty of water. The trail tends to be muddy and overgrown so I'd recommend pants and change of socks.

9 months ago

The trail is great for four wheelers. It could be marked a little better, and I do wish it was one way only to reduce risk of running into someone, but I haven't found a better trail in Louisiana.

backpacking
9 months ago

Was a beautiful weekend for being out on the trail. I parked at Caroline Dormon Trail head and made the 2.5 mile road hike to the Backbone trail head. It wasn't too bad of a walk. I then hiked up to one of the vista campsites about 1/2 way through the trail. The better of the two campsites had a large dead tree near by and appeared to be infested with Wasp's so I retreated back to the smaller campsite with the not so great view. there was no water on the trail up to this point so be sure you bring plenty with you. I didn't find good water source until the second day on my hike out. The trail is well worn but not marked very well as compared to the Wild Azalea and Kincaid Lake trails. I had no problem staying on the trail. Many parts of the trail are very narrow and a little overgrown from the knee down so make sure to keep an eye for tics in the warmer months. Plenty of down trees crossing the trails as well. Overall this is one of the better trail around. If you get the chance you will enjoy it .

A lot of trail is over grown, definitely not 9 miles of defined trail; maybe 3 miles!

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