Pinhoti Trail: Adam's Gap to Cheaha State Park

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Talladega National Forest

Pinhoti Trail: Adam's Gap to Cheaha State Park is a 10.4 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Lineville, Alabama that features beautiful wild flowers. The trail is rated as difficult and offers a number of activity options. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 10.4 miles Elevation Gain: 1,952 feet Route Type: Point to Point

dog friendly




nature trips

bird watching



wild flowers



4 months ago

12.02 miles, not 10.4. Definitely challenging! We did Cheaha to Adams Gap. One of my friends said the last climb broke her heart.

Great trail. Very rocky

over grown
7 months ago

Sat Mar 23 2019

The map said rough and challenging, this trail (Adams gap to Cheaha with full pack) lived up to the review. Tested myself physically and mentally., it was a great workout. I wished I had made it a two day’er instead of a one day’er. Ready for a shakedown! DO THIS TRAIL, carry at lease 3 liters of water. Remember, don’t let nothing but fear stop you.

Fri Mar 22 2019

Wow! Difficult is an under statement. We hiked from Adams Gap to Cheaha State Park in one day (around 8 to 9 hrs). It was definitely tough and rough going. The trail from Adams Gap Trail-head to the base of stairway to Heaven, was of course, no problem. At this point, the hiking degree of difficulty goes to a 10. Up to the Bluff was very steep and difficult, and trail makings were hard to find near the top. If you make it alive, get ready for miles and miles of boulders and rocks on the trail. Don't even think this is a nice little dirt pathway. I mean constant rocks, which reduces you trail speed to around 1 mile per hour. Maybe if you made this a 2 day trip, it may not be quite as grueling, or go from the State Park down to Adams Gap instead. If you attempt this route in 1 day, I would recommend at least around 3 quarts of water, plus be in great physical condition. In the end, it is was extremely difficult but rewarding at the same time with spectacular views and scenery. Side note: I read Terri Graham's review, she was right on, believe it.

Beautiful views, but not a lot of water. I’d suggest heading north on the Pinhoti over blue mountain to Garrett Grove. But nice day hike if you can move.

Mon Feb 25 2019

OMG! Day One: Up at 3am, out the door by 4am, big breakfast at Shoneys, hit the mountains, by 9am. Shakedown hike begins. Hiking in the mountains sounds wonderful and romantic doesn’t it? Well, let me tell you it is not for the faint of heart. Because, it will take every ounce of heart to get to the top of the Stairway to Heaven on the Pinhoti Trail. That’s after you’ve crossed 6 streams and hiked 6mi. It is a 1500 feet ascent at a 90 degree angle on nothing but boulder climbing. Not the best pick for a beginner! Once we defeated that climb...not hike, had to beat the storm coming in and getting camp set up. We were still in the boulders about 50 very long feet from the top. No where was level. So, we pitched a tent on the flattest area we could find which was full of roughage, rocks, and trees (sorry, no pics of camp) on about a 30 degree incline. Right when we were getting our last couple of stakes in it started raining and didn’t stop until 4am. We threw all our gear inside our tent and hunkered down. No camp side fire, no sing alongs, no dinner over a hot fire. We were so tired we could barely change out of our clothes and into our base layers. We knew we had to because it was forecast to be down in the 30’s with heavy rain and wind. They weren’t joking! We stayed warm, but ended up having our rainfly get loose and of course got a little wet inside. Not to bad, but still wet. When it finally stopped raining at 4am, I got out of the tent, fixed the tent and rainfly. I did take notice that from the top of the mountain I could see for miles and I could see three towns in the distance all lit up. Day Two: Call 911! Call the Cosstguard! We are seriously too tired to go back down the boulders. We’re off trail and Terry’s 20lb pack feels like 40lbs. He hasn’t eaten and can’t take his insulin. Not good! He eats a little, while I breakdown everything, throw my 30lb pack on and see if I can find the trail. I found it! I call for Terry and he is seriously ill and says call 911! After 30 minutes, he musters up his last ounce of energy, gets his pack on, and we begin our descent. Oh, and we did make it to the top of the mountain Yay! Down we go! Tired, barely moving, we hear voices behind us. It’s 5 hikers who were about a half mile ahead of us they day before and were no headed back too. Boy, they were moving! I hate young people! Lol! They told us they were able to scale the boulder climb and camp down in the valley on the other side of the ridge and said it sounded like we both had the same problems setting up camp. They shared two bottles of water ( we were out). We chatted for a few minutes and we thanked them so very much. It’s just what the doctor ordered. We waived them on. They were young and they soon left us behind because they had 24 miles to cover that day. Whaaa?! Ok, y’all do that. Haha. I’m sure they did because within 10 minutes they were out of sight. I think we stopped every 30 minutes or so on the way back. The six streams we crossed the day before had doubled from all the rain the night before. It was a wonderful 40 degrees out and quit gusty. We got to back to the car by 3pm. It felt like we were moving in slow motion. It was the hardest thing I’ve physically done since childbirth! Ironically, I lost 10 lbs on both endeavors. No joke! Well, at least there’s a silver lining at the end of the shakedown. Happy Trails y’all! #hikinghurts #wheresmytrophy #romanceisgone #doingitagain 3 weeks to the AT!!

Mon Jan 07 2019

Amazing trail! Used it as a shakedown hike to test my pack weight and gear. Downed trees made the path difficult to find and navigate in several areas. Had to use my AllTrail map to stay on/return to trail. Love this app. Several reliable water sources along the way. Since this was just a shakedown hike I only did a small part and stayed just one night. Lots of great camping sites with fire rings. Planning to return and do a two night hike from Adams Gap to Cheaha then return on Cave Creek.

Mon Jan 07 2019

unseasonably warm temps in January made for unexpectedly active trail traffic today! recent rains and fallen limbs made trail blazes difficult to see, bring your GEO map and compass or extra battery for your phone to use All Trails GPS. HIGHLY recommend this trail, I can't wait to go back! 10 am start at Adam's Gap, 3.45 pm finish at Cheaha Trailhead.

Sat Sep 08 2018

I hiked the Pinhoti from Cheaha Park to Chinnabee Silent Trail—about 7-8 miles. It’s a beautiful trail with great views, but some sections are under-maintained, making it very easy to lose the trail. Before backpacking I camped (really just slept in my vehicle) in the primitive camping area at nearby Cheaha State Park. The park is atop Mt. Cheaha, offering camping, hiking, hotel rooms, cabins, chalets, and a restaurant, where I had a decent hot buffet breakfast. I met friends at the Turnipseed Campground, just 10 minutes South on Hwy 128. That also looks like a great place to camp, and offers honor system payment and convenient location to the trail. We left a car there and drive another to the trailhead north, just past the park. The highlight of this section of the Pinhoti is McDill Point, a picturesque stone outcropping offering stunning views of the forrested valley. South of McDill Point the trail gets very faint in spots, sometimes disappearing in high grass, other times obscured by rock fields. Several times we had to search for the blue blazes it even backtrack a bit because of confusing paths leading in several directions. Be sure to keep your eyes open for the blue blazes marking the trail. We camped in an open area at the intersection with the Chinabee Silent Trail, with a couple of stone fire rings, plenty of downed firewood, and a small stream at the south edge of the campsite. Overall I would recommend this trail to anyone looking for a challenging hike with spectacular views. It can be combined with the Chinnabee Silent Trail for a 2- or 3-day backpacking trip that is very scenic.

Tue Mar 27 2018

We started at the Cheaha State Park end of this art of trail as part of a three night backpacking trip in the area. Over the first 5-miles there are some incredible vistas over the lower land to the west. There is no water sources on this part of the trail. There are several good campsites and there is a very good area (no view) at the intersection with the Chinnebee Silent Trail. There are several fire rings and water source at that site. There are numerous water sources on the trail from the intersection to Adams Gap. There is one very steep downhill going south, and the trail generally has some tough footing in places because of the rocks.

Mon Mar 19 2018

Plenty of water along the trail and the rock gardens along the trail are a real treat for any hiker. One of the best section hikes in the state.

Wed Dec 06 2017

I give this trail 5 stars for fantastic views. Several good camping spots. Not many water sources.

Fri Nov 10 2017

I did Cheaha to Adam's Gap as a pacer for the Pinhoti 100. None of it was runnable at night. This was very technical with skinny slanted trails that didn't seem like they had been traversed a lot. Nevertheless, this is beautiful country and the fall colors were amazing at this time of year.

Sat Sep 30 2017

Didn't go on the entire hike but the first portion of it is great! Lots of terrain/scenery changes and some good lookout spots here and there. Well marked trail.

Sun Aug 20 2017

It was an accident - we meant to do the pinhoti to cave creek but ended up hiking the whole pinhoti. Anyway, beautiful hike!

Tue Aug 08 2017

Great trail for the state of Alabama.

Thu Apr 13 2017

I did it with two friends in December and it rained half the day. I still had a great time; several nice views and alot of whats great about Alabama. I would do it again. Certain parts have blazes too far apart and they require some searching.

Tue Mar 21 2017

Conquered a small part of this trail. My older two girls loved it! The views were amazing!

Mon Feb 13 2017

Strenuous, rocky uphill grind around 3 miles in dubbed, "Stairway to Heaven". North of that, combination of rocky paths, slow grinds and relatively flat dirt paths. Water sources abundant, particularly starting from the Adam's Gap TH. Remains of a plane crash near trail, also purported to be a wrecked model-T (we could not find it) said to be near the power line easement toward the Cheaha TH and from the days a CCC camp was located on Cheaha. Several scenic overlooks. We saw several hikers, a few tent campers, dogs, and a hammock camper.

12 days ago

5 months ago

9 months ago

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