Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail

EASY 79 reviews
#1 of 1 trails in

Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail is a 12.2 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Orange Beach, Alabama that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

12.2 miles
98 feet

dog friendly

wheelchair friendly

kid friendly



mountain biking

road biking

trail running






wild flowers



old growth

All trails are paved with nice restroom building, butterfly pavillion, swings and seats for resting. Not real long trail but enjoyable trails. The fire damage is gone and many improvements have been made. This trail has many trails combined. Bicycles can get 20 miles when you ride all of the connected trails. There are at least 5 trail heads. Many places to stop and enjoy the scenery. But, the best thing about this trail is the wildlife. You can see deer, foxes, coyotes, many varieties of snakes, alligators, shore birds, turtles, birds of prey ( bald eagles and osprey), rabbits, and possum. The list is endless.

1 day ago

This trail isn’t for me, but my 3-year-old loved it.

11 days ago

Hiked a large part of this trail in mid-July after a rainstorm. The heat and humidity had subsided so it wasn't bad. The trails are very well maintained, options of paved asphalt, raised wooden trails, or primitive dirt trails. Little elevation change, restrooms, and water all along the way. There are some beautiful scenic spots and amazing ecosystems along the way. The reason this gets a 5 star over a four is the wildlife. Saw several snakes, frogs, turtles, and birds. Even saw a bobcat on the wooden trail. Did not see alligators or armadillos but according to campers there are plenty around the area so be cautious and aware at all times. Definite must for any outdoorsy person in the Gulf Shores area.

16 days ago

Great place for casual ride.

17 days ago

Did Alligator Marsh Trail to Bear Creek Trail. Short unpaved out and back Trail.

22 days ago

Excellent trail system for walking, running or biking. Now that the boardwalks are complete you can easily walk or bike to the beach or fishing pier. Lots of wildlife viewing opportunities.

1 month ago

Very easy trails. 4.7 miles in the heat. All paved or boardwalk

3 months ago

Fun easy for all ages

road biking
4 months ago


6 months ago

Very nice set of trails. All paved and boardwalks. My wife and I walked with our black lab and enjoyed it. It was very heavy traffic even for February so I imagine once tourist season gets in full swing there will be little solitude. Great park!

road biking
9 months ago

Great system of trails and will be even better once the construction is finished with easy access to the beach and fishing pier.

trail running
9 months ago

Best area I've ever run. Boardwalks and paved around the entire state park. Campground is awesome and a good location to start.

10 months ago

The nicest trail I've ever been on . I walked on the south side of pavement in the grass and sand. Was about 50% shaded walking there. Plenty of rest stop benches along the way . I did the 1.5 straight out and back . Completely flat . Swinging bench at the 1.5 stop along with a restroom house . Great.

mountain biking
Friday, August 11, 2017

Potential for a 5 with a better map, but a missed turn put me on Perdido Beach Blvd with my 7 & 9 year old boys for about a mile - mile and a half. If you reach Perdido Beach from State Park Rd., go back and turn right onto the next path to access the newly developed boardwalk. There seemed to be some development underway on the trail that will deliver an optimized experience.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Great paved trail. Lots of wildlife and lots of traffic to get to the trail.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Lots of places to rest and a lot to see. You can also camp out here. Definitely will make another trip to it!

Saturday, December 03, 2016

There are several paved trails connecting, I added a map in the photos for reference. It looks like they are currently working on adding a few trails as well. We started at the catman trail head but didn't start recording until we got to the powerline connection cut thru. These trails are great for everyone in the family and great for walking, biking and running.

mountain biking
Saturday, October 15, 2016

These are mostly paved cycling trails, nice leisurely family ride. The new boardwalks are amazing. They are doing a great job managing the park. Very enjoyable ride.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Cut through marsh areas it gives you a close look at animals, lakes, and marshy areas. Trail is all asphalt and wide enough for walkers, runners and bikes. Well marked and lots of benches for resting or viewing nature. Easy area for anyone. Make sure you grab map to determine your path.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Great walk and very shady under all the oaks

Saturday, March 05, 2016

This is actually the Rosemary Dunes Trail that is part of the Hugh S. Branyon Backcountry Trail in Gulf State Park. There are several trails to choose from!

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Great trail

Monday, October 12, 2015

Awesome pet friendly, well maintained trails. This will be our third year snow birding down in Gulf Shores. We walk every one of these trails. Spanish moss cascading down decade old trees are just one of the many sights to see. See you in Feb/Mar '16

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Well maintained paved trails. It's a much used park but everyone very friendly.I loved the maps availability at the trail heads. I saw two armadillo and Osprey. I walked the Catman and Rosemary Dunes Trails and can't wait to go back and try the others. I'm sure the butterfly garden is beautiful in the spring.

road biking
Tuesday, November 05, 2013

There are about 12 miles of paved trails now and more coming. I ride this trail everyday and it is wonderful, no roadway crossings all controlled acess foot and bike traffic only. Five trail heads for easy acess, center point has bathroom and water.

road biking
Monday, July 29, 2013

This is an amazing trail and I am so fortunate to live within 1/2 mile of two trail heads. There are 5 trail heads. The wildlife is the most amazing part of this trail. The variety is unparallelled. There are snakes (I videoed a 7 foot rattlesnake on Rattlesnake Ridge!) Turtles, deer, foxes, coyotes, Bald eagles, osprey, shore birds, rabbits, alligators, and many more. Each season brings a new species out of the woods onto the trail. I ride at least 2-3 times per week and can get 20 miles in easily. Watch out or Snowbirds (people) in the winter...they can be hard of hearing and walk all over the lanes. Really give them warning when riding.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

We always bike or hike this trail when we're in Orange Beach, Alabama. It's a well maintained state park of paved trails. It's perfect for hiking, joggers, biking, and for just getting out and enjoying the natural low country scenery. Lots of seating and swings for resting and reflecting. It's not a real long series of trails but still a nice place to bike or walk. The main trail head is off Hwy 161 off Canal Road where you can pick up trail maps and park. On one of the marked trails, "Rosemary Dunes" you can sometimes spot "Lefty" the local alligator sunning himself on this trail. Worth visiting if you're in the area and would like to get out and enjoy a little exercise while in the area.

Recently visited trail in September 2014 and "Lefty" the local alligator has had babies. Saw one small gator sunning on the bank. Several posts of sightings by staff of pygmie rattlesnakes, also in the Roesemary Dunes trail area.

They've also added a new trail called Cotton Dunes which is about a mile or mile and a half long. It exits out to highway 161 near Publix. The park really needs some rainfall. Some of the swampy areas where the gators reside were really low.Pretty dry. A local realtor is doing some kind of development near the Rosemary Dunes trailhead on the beach side highway. I've heard that they've worked out an agreement with the park to develop or possibly fund some new trails in that area as a prerequisite to doing any development. Hope this proves to be a good thing for the trail.

17 days ago

trail running
23 days ago

road biking
29 days ago

road biking
2 months ago

Load More