Explore the most popular kid friendly trails in Hemlock Bluffs State Natural Area with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Beautiful spring time trail run just after a rainy day! Chestnut Oak and Swift Creek trails combined equal about two miles if you add the Beach Cove lookout. This is a perfect beginner trail run as the trail is extremely well maintained and consists of arborist wood chips and wood planks where the trail would normally be wet. The Chestnut Oak trail is the longer of the two and provides a nice rolling terrain with a modest climb up from the creek. This connects to the Swift Creek trail with consists of 105 steps down the bluff to the creek with a flat loop that brings you back to the steps. There are a hand full of platforms that provide as good a view as you can get from the heart of Cary, NC! The nature preserve office is open until 5:00 PM but the gates remain open until 8:00 PM. There are nice bathroom facilities and even a nature education area for the kids!

I highly recommend this trail if you are looking to blow off some steam on a shaded, moderate run!

A gorgeous walk through the woods! All the trails at Hemlock Bluffs are well maintained and offer both easy and more challenging walking. Beautiful flora and fauna throughout. Highly recommend!

Beautiful natural area just a couple of miles from bustling commercial area in Cary. Extremely well maintained with frequent sightings of deer, squirrels and other native species. A tranquil oasis if you time it right but relaxing walk even when others are around.

This is one of my favorite spots!

Nice short trail leading to the overlooks.

walking
6 months ago

Did it combined with Symphony Lake Greenway. Nice walk with the creek and lake throughout.

pretty wooded area close to town. a few inclines but mostly easy. dirt trail.

The trails are great. The steps however are terrible. Would give it a higher rating without steps. Should be mentioned in the description.

This is a very short overlook trail off the Beech Tree Cove Trail. Unfortunately the view from the top of the bluff was limited when I visited in Late September. It definitely would be better after the leaves fall.

This is a short loop off the Chestnut Oak Loop Trail, with access to two bluff overlooks.

This trail takes you down to a nice loop below the bluffs and along Swift Creek. It is a combination of both boardwalks and a well maintained natural trail.

This is a very well maintained and pretty walk through the woods.

I combined both of these trails with the Beech Tree Cove and West Hemlock Overlooks. All the trails are very well maintained and great for families, especially when combined with the nature center.

hiking
7 months ago

great place to hike and for nature programs

Nice place. Great for kids.

Excellent place for weekend walk/hike

Nice short & easy trail. Not too many bugs which was my main concern. Just wear or bring some bug spray and the bugs aren't bad at all if you're moving.

walking
Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Fairly short and easy trail. The trail is totally mulch which isn't my preference. Saw some really beautiful deer very close to the path.
This is a great trail for running or for someone with kids.

hiking
Sunday, April 16, 2017

Very nice easy walk through the woods. Paths are well maintained .

trail running
Saturday, February 11, 2017

Lots of people, but very well maintained and beautiful views. Lots of stairs too

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Great easy walk

nature trips
Friday, November 04, 2016

Easy tails within the city limits. Stand of hemlocks can be seen.

nature trips
Sunday, April 03, 2016

This is truly a beautiful Nature Preserve and great for a leisurely stroll or a run. I went on my own but it looks great for families as well. If you are looking for a scenic area to relax this is perfect.

nice easy trail as long as your good with some stairs.

Nice place for a family walk.

My wife and I have lived in this area since the '70s and this was our first trip to Hemlock Bluffs. The surroundings are beautiful and, except for a little noise from Kildare Farm road, seems to be in the middle of nowhere. The park and nature center are very well done (kudos to the Town of Cary) and would be a great place for families with kids.

The trails are well maintained as are the many, many steps. The trails are enjoyable and require what I would consider a low-moderate level of effort. My GPS showed a total elevation change of 161 feet. We ran into another hiker who reported a snake on the trail but we never saw it ... and were a bit disappointed.

We will be returning on a regular basis and will bring the grand-kids the nature center and for a good hike.

walking
Saturday, April 12, 2014

Great place for a short walk. Trails are well maintained. Only bird I was able to see was a Cardinal.

walking
Saturday, March 23, 2013

This is probably one of the prettiest places for a stroll in the Raleigh area that I've found so far. You can tell that a lot of people really have their heart in this place. Perfect for families to have some gentle nature time together.

trail running
Friday, February 03, 2012

Went for a trail run. Lots of families with children. Very well maintained. Very scenic.

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