Wild Azalea Trail

MODERATE 57 reviews
#1 of 16 trails in

Wild Azalea Trail is a 23.9 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Woodworth, Louisiana that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
23.9 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,745 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Point to Point

dog friendly

backpacking

birding

camping

fishing

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

beach

forest

lake

views

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

bridge out

bugs

muddy

over grown

hiking
19 days ago

Very chill trail to unwind. I started at the Valentine Lake rec area and went to the 20 mile marker just past the intersection of Castor Plunge Rd and 212. Mile markers 6-9 have some sweet creeks and so do Mile markers 15-17. Well marked and well traveled so you can go miles without even using the yellow diamonds posted on the trees. Make sure to grab a spider web stick so you aren't getting a face full of Golden Orb Weavers haha. Not the prettiest or most exciting but very relaxing and worth the great workout once or twice. I've done 24 miles (markers 1-12 and back) one time and 20 miles (markers 11-20.5) another time. I've about had my fill of the trail but it would be better with friends of course! My 3L CamelBak lasted about 20 miles in the early August morning because the shade made it a bit cooler. A few good creeks to get water from with my LifeStraw too.
+Bugs didnt bother me too bad and it never got super muddy.
-Low lying veg gets scratchy, narrow in some areas to allow spider webs
I recommend listening to Astrophysics for People in a Hurry on Audible when you do this hike. It was relaxing and a bit enlightening.
Hiked in August 2018

1 month ago

Did this trail in June of 2016, beautiful scenery, but fair warning!!!! me and a friend started at lake valentine as the sun was coming up and finished at woodworth around 330pm. NOTICE: the trail is advertised at 23.9 miles, on the website it says 26.2 miles, we brought water for 27 miles and were going to run down (refill water in woodworth) and back for a total of 54 ish miles. We both had GPS trackers and needless to say we ran out of water at 27 miles.... the total length of trail is 36.4 miles!!!! NOT including the 5.4 miles loop around lake valentine. Luckily we’re both military and were able to push through. Just a warning, granted I know most people don’t try to run the whole length.

hiking
2 months ago

Went out for a shakedown hike. Started in Woodworth hiked in about 11 miles then turned and came back a couple of miles to a good campsite by water. Trail very well marked, a little overgrown with several trees across trail but nothing too bad. Looking forward to cooler weather. The hike was not bad but it was very hot and muggy at night. Did not see or hear anyone but it was during the week. Will definitely be sharing this trail with my family

hiking
3 months 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
4 months 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
4 months ago

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

horseback riding
4 months 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
5 months ago

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

hiking
5 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
5 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
5 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
6 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.

6 months ago

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
6 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.

hiking
Friday, June 02, 2017

Went in mid-May for a 3-day backpack trip. Had a little rain, but def a beautiful trail with great spots for hammock camping. Plenty of water sources.

backpacking
Thursday, March 23, 2017

Did the 48 mile out and back from Woodworth a couple weekends ago. I started on March 10th at about 16:00 and came back on the 11th at almost 22:00, so about 30 hours total. The trail was really nice, just a lot of woods, and not much to see, but very peaceful. Like the other review says, there was no water for about the first 5 miles out of Woodworth but after that, all the creeks were flowing well. The trail was really muddy at a lot of parts, so make sure you plan for having soggy shoes. I camped near the Castor Creek area, and not too many bugs were around. Over the last 2 miles before I got back to my car I saw 3 of the biggest bobcats I've ever seen, eyes easily 2 feet above the ground, so that was really cool.

backpacking
Wednesday, March 08, 2017

went January 26th 2017 came out on the 27th, started in woodworth and did a in and out overnight hike. Did not complete the whole trail, i hiked 6 miles out and back tracked back to my car. Was a well established trail with lots to see, it was really beautiful out there.

backpacking
Sunday, March 05, 2017

A very good trail for Louisiana. We did the trail (one way) over 3 days as a shakedown for Philmont. We will likely do the trail again.

Water... you can filter water along the trail in a couple of locations. So plan it through.

hiking
Wednesday, March 01, 2017

A few questions:

Is there any path to make a day-hike loop out of this?
And which parts of the trails are best for each of the following?
-Hilly terrain
-Flowers
-Water

hiking
Tuesday, February 21, 2017

This is not a review but a question, is there a service for dropping off the hikers and then taking the car to the other end? Thanks~

backpacking
Wednesday, February 15, 2017

A did the trail a few years back. Good trail to work out any backpacking kinks before hitting more technical trails out of state.

trail running
Sunday, January 08, 2017

Good rolling hills. Not too technical.

mountain biking
Friday, December 30, 2016

Took my cyclocross bike out and rode most of the trail, really enjoyed the long flowing stretches on the bike and the challenges the more technical sections of trail provided. The pine needles and leaves made the trail slick and obscured some ground obstacles otherwise I'd recommend sections for kids to mountain bike and trail running. Had a lot of fun.

hiking
Wednesday, December 28, 2016

This is not how I hiked the trail, I got off the Wild Azalea Trail to a loop and back to the start point to allow hikers to find a 8 mile trail with a loop to return to the parking area. Not sure why All Trails changed me track. I will not spend the time uploading, when they change my track. Ferdara

backpacking
Thursday, May 19, 2016

Hiked this trail in mid April. Very well marked. You can see one blaze from the other. Trail is well maintained. Saw a couple of other people, but not many. Hiked 13 miles the first day and camped then finished it up. The first half of the trail is pretty easy. The middle has a few ups and downs. And the finish is not that bad.

hiking
Monday, April 18, 2016

This is the first trail I hiked in quite a few years. It was very enjoyable, not too difficult for a 52 year old flatlander. We saw several wild horses. I posted some pictures of these. The flora was impressive. Beautiful hardwoods, pines, and cypress trees. The wild azaleas were also in bloom. My GPS recorded the trail at 25.9 miles.

hiking
Saturday, April 09, 2016

My wife, two teenagers, two dogs, and I did the trail last month for Spring break. Three days, but we didn't make the full 48 mile out and back from Woodworth. The trail is gorgeous, with nice views even through woodlands. There are plenty of spots to camp off the trail, and plentiful water except for the first 5 or so miles out of Woodworth. Beautiful wild flowers, and we even saw a large herd of feral pigs! No mosquitos to speak of but we did have to frequently check for ticks, especially with the dogs. All in all a really great and not-too-demanding backpacking trail

hiking
Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Just finished a 32 mile hike on this trail.This is the first time I visited this trail and I was very impressed on how well the the trail is maintained. The trail was highly visible with well placed, yellow, diamond shaped markers that are also reflective for night hikes. The trail heads were equipped with a map center with plenty of maps and info for both experience and new hikers. Last but not least, the bathrooms were clean and had plenty of T.P. A big thanks to all that take a part in keeping this trail beautiful. great job, i will definitely be back.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Good for mileage. Not difficult at all. Peaceful and good water sources. Did the in and out (48mi) in 2 days. Camping was great. Lots of firewood available.

trail running
Tuesday, January 05, 2016

WAT is a fantastic trail system. The trail is marked every half mile starting at Valentine Lake Day Use Recreation Area. Park there and follow the blue diamonds to the yellow diamonds. There is about a mile and a half to get to the WAT but well worth it because if gives you a great view of the small Valentine Lake. WAY has nice rolling hills. This is GREAT trail for running and mountain biking. Camping is allowed all along the trail. This is one of Louisiana's hidden gems.

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