I recommend you take the 1430 road and park in the primitive parking lot a short distance in. You will descend some very rough, rocky terrain until you reach an actual trail. Head to your left, and you will eventually find some very interesting rock formations and a primitive campsite. We also saw an armadillo. The trail is very poorly marked, and sometimes you are just guessing where it is. We ended up retracing our steps back, as we couldn't find a trail loop. (There was a possible loop heading up a steep hill, but we chose not to take it.) My adult sons rated our hike at Huckleberry Ridge seven stars out of 10. We managed to walk 2.9 miles.
The GPS from this app put us at the wrong entrance I now realize, looking at photos from others. But, it ended up being a blessing. There was a dirt road at first that turned into a small path through briars that led us onto a steep slope of rock. Once at the bottom of the slope, we were able to follow a river bed to some pretty amazing views. The terrain changed several times and it was definitely on the difficult side. Also, I can see why there were a lot of stones with arrows spray painted on them. You could easily get lost out there.
I would like to go back and do the actual walking trail sometime. But I'll definitely go back to the river bed in the fall.
The river is nice. Beautiful actually. This is not a family friendly River though unless you go to a part without people or during the week. The people are quite honestly trash. It's horrendous as an under statement. I have seen topless women and heard of people having sex on the banks. People go there to fornicate and intoxicate. Just go when the idiots are gone and it's great
Kenny R. on Huckleberry Ridge State Forest
Actually did the hike on 3/21/2014. A little hard to find but that's a good thing if you want a quiet hike. I did this hike barefoot and it was difficult in places but my feet quickly adjusted. I did 12 miles on this trail and found a nice little stream. I strung up my hammock for a bit just to listen to it and rest. No car noises only the birds and wind in the trees.
I think this trail is used for horseback riding a lot, and there are primitive campsites throughout.
It is very rural and in the middle of nowhere...a difficult hike for a beginner. I have gone back twice since and plan to explore more next time. Very peaceful.
Beautiful during the Fall. Took my wife and Boston Terrier out and camped overnight. Had a good time trail was mostly rocky but if varies and saw many horse back riders on the trail. Did some bushwhacking while on the trip. Nice oak and pine forest and natural cleared cliffs. Can be steep and doesn't have a particular Trail head. There are possibly 3-4 entrances but two have signs. Ive been here a couple of times. Once during the snow and this fall. There are man made camp spots off of the trail in different places. No hookups just primitive camping. Ill post photos of my trip with the wife and dog. Good trail just rocky. Also make sure to give your self plenty of room from the trail and your camping spot so your not bending your stakes into rocks. Made that mistake, just camp in deeper.
I have hiked extensively in Huckleberry Ridge State Forest. Some of my hiking has been on the trail, but a lot has been bushwacking. The terrain is rocky, sometimes steep, and the trail itself is, as was stated, mostly used for horseback riding. Having said this, it is an enjoyable hike. Lots of good scenery. Mixed hardwood.pine forest, but no major water. Elk River is close, but not on the trail. Primitive camping is permitted in Pine Ridge, so I've been able to pack with full gear, and do the dog companion and overnight thing. This area does not get heavy use, except for horseback activities.
I have floated from Cyclone to the city of Noel in different sections for over 15 years. I used to enjoy the crowds when I was younger and into the partying that this river is known for but these days I look for quite rivers to float. This is not a child friendly river, nor is it a quite river. The overabundance of outfitters is definitely ruining the river. There are too many people on the river that do not respect the "pack in pack out" philosophy, and the river is being trashed. The upper section of the river is by far less crowded than the lower section.
That being said, the river is nice during the off season. There are great places to fish all along the river and there are several public access points along the river that one can launch and take out on.
The fishing is decent on both ends of the river using a 3" watermelon seed tube jig with a 1/8 ounce jig head. This is all you need to catch fish on this river.