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Longleaf Trace Trail is a 40.5 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Hattiesburg, Mississippi that features beautiful wild flowers 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 but must be kept on leash.

Length 40.5 mi Elevation gain 915 ft Route type Point to Point

Dogs on leash

Wheelchair friendly

Kid friendly

Stroller friendly

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Horseback riding

Mountain biking

Road biking

Walking

Bike touring

Bird watching

Running

Forest

Paved

Rails trails

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Description
Waypoints (8)
Contact
Tips
Getting There

This southern charmer invites you to explore the enchanted forests of Mississippi w/ interpretive signs to lead the way. This is truly a multipurpose/multi-use trail. The trail is also wheelchair accessible throughout its entire length. This trail is not only the longest rail trail in Mississippi, but it is the longest in the south-central United States. It is a very smooth trail with beautifully forested stretches. In addition to the usual trail scenery and tranquility, this trail has some unique and interesting features from a large beaver dam to a year-round Christmas tree. This trail is probably one of the most family-friendly trails in the world. In addition to being fairly flat and smooth, it has frequent rest-stops with bathrooms, vending machines, refreshments, and covered seating. Another unique feature of the trail is the forestry educational signs. All along the way, you will find dozens of signs identifying various common southern species of trees and other flora. You will find such varieties as Loblolly Pine, Supplejack, White Oak, Crabapple, Southern Magnolia, Mimosa, Sassafras, and the trail's namesake Longleaf Pine. Other trail users exhibit that famous southern charm and gentility and trail-users are welcomed in the small towns along the way. The only large town along the trail is Hattiesburg, home to the University of Southern Mississippi on whose campus the trail begins. At this point, there is an information station and bike rental business called the Gateway at Southern Miss. The rental shop has friendly proprietors and an abundance of bikes including a nice selection of recumbents and some tandems. That works out nicely since this trail is ideal for riding recumbents and bicycles-built-for-two. If you've never ridden either, this is the ideal place to give them a try. Some of the businesses along the trail are quintessentially southern. You will feel like you are in an episode of Petticoat Junction as you browse the quaintly cluttered shelves and old-fashioned cash register in this last establishment.

Longleaf Trace information http://www.longleaftrace.org/

- If you're visiting New Orleans, this trail is definitely worth the detour. - The bike rental shop at Gateway to Southern Miss is very convenient for renting a bicycle or recumbent. Even if you live near here and have your own bikes, you may want to consider renting for convenience and the experience of trying out a different kind of bike. - Dogs must be on a leash at all times while in the trail vicinity. - Be courteous to others and use common trail sense. Give an audible signal (not loud or abrupt or last minute) when you are approaching another trail user. A simple "on your left" or ring of your bike-bell is fine. This is especially important for horses. Let them know you are coming, well in advance so you don't startle them. Startling a horse can be bad for the horse, the horse rider, and for you. - Pack lots of water with you.

From I59 take the Hardy Street exit and go east on Hardy Street to 38th Street (second light). Turn left on 38th Avenue and then right at the next light at 4th Street. The Gateway will be on your left at the foot of the water tower at the northern edge of the USM campus. From US Highway 49 from Jackson: At Mendenhall turn south on Highway 13. At Prentiss turn west on US Highway 84. The Trace crosses 84 just south of its terminus at the park in Prentiss. Take a side street to the beautiful park (see pictures below) and parking area. For the Hattiesburg terminus see I59 instructions above or the US Highway 49 directions below. To access the Trace at Sumrall or Epley from Highway 49: Turn west on 42. Turn left on Epley Road (first paved road) to go to Epley, or straight to continue to Sumrall. In Sumrall turn left on 589 and the parking area is a few blocks on your left. If you are coming from Mobile on US Highway 98 or from the coast on US Highway 49 (they intersect just south of Hattiesburg): Continue (or turn) west on US 98 to I59 north to Hardy Street. Then follow the directions from I59 above. US Highway 49 Directions: If you are familiar with Hattiesburg and USM, another more scenic way to get to the Gateway Southern Miss is to stay on 49 into Hattiesburg, and then turn west on 4th street (watch for signs directing you to the Gateway. You will get off onto a frontage road that will take you to 4th Street (4th Street passes over US 49). The Gateway will be on your right across from the football stadium. That way you get to see more of the fabulous hub city and USM. To start at Epley or Sumrall, follow the directions above. Going North, Highway 42 will be on your left about 3 miles after you cross under I59.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (88)
Photos (17)
Recordings (77)
Completed (104)
Camille Angelie
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Apr 21 2020
Hiking

I love this trail. Perfect for hiking, running & cycling

Stephen Crone
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Mar 27 2020
Hiking

Good trail

View Stephen's Recording
Sam Craft
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarThu Mar 19 2020
Hiking

This is a nice, shaded trail with a variety of options. Paved trail is great for kids (particularly those on wheels - bikes, scooters, strollers, skates, etc). Multiple parking areas allow access to smaller sections. (I like the middle, starting at Jackson Station, for a short but pretty trip.) The main, paved trail connects several other mountain bike and foot trails of varying difficulty — still all fairly easy from what I’ve found, and I have explored many over the years. The trail is definitely high traffic, but perfect for a casual afternoon stroll with the family, a run, or a little off-road exploration. There are plenty of helpful distance markers for anyone training as well. Giving 4 of 5 stars because the views aren’t exactly breathtaking, but really great considering the location.

Niki Peel
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Mar 08 2020
Road biking

Awesome!! Bikes an out and back for a 30 mile round trip!! Great!!

View Niki's Recording
Sadie Harper
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Feb 17 2020
Hiking

Best trail for walking and running- super well maintained

Mike Harris
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarTue Sep 24 2019
Hiking

App useless - no links for camping nearby- deleted

Mallory Umbehagen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Dec 02 2018
Walking

Love walking part of this trail everyday with my dog! It’s always well maintained and is stays pretty busy with bikers and runners. Definitely a fun thing to do in Hattiesburg if you want to spend some time outside!

Jeff Thompson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Jul 18 2018

Started on edge of Hattiesburg and hiked west several friendly folks on trail I stopped and ate at a restaurant in one of the small towns I have hiked and road many trails across several states and I really like this one. It’s easy so just add on the miles if you like a challenge. Go in the late spring and you can travel through the middle of pretty corn fields. Also lots of pretty long leaf pines. There is also a company that you can pay for a ride from one side to other to get vehicle if need be.

Jason Richardson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Jul 04 2018
Road biking

Great trail pretty well maintained

Steve Susko
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Apr 02 2018
Road biking

Beautiful well kept trail it is easy but has a slight incline that can wear on you

Fred Poston
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMon Mar 05 2018

Very nice trail , well maintained with lots of rest stops and access to water, restrooms, and cold drinks. My only complaint is that we were chased by dogs on three occasions while riding from Prentiss to Hattiesburg.

lyle Westfall
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat Aug 26 2017

A great place to get in shape or recoup after surgery! Folks are friendly and eager to help with any malfunction you may have . Lots of stops /entrances and exits along the way! Take a weekend and see it! Come once and you'll be back several times!

Douglas McDonald
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat Jul 15 2017
Road biking

I have ridden the LLT numerous times, often 2 or 3 times per week. I thoroughly enjoy my time spent there. The surface is well-maintained, but beginning to show its age. As much as I enjoy the LLT, there are a few negatives to keep in mind when planning a trip. 1) Things can get crowded from Jackson Station on in to Hattiesburg, especially in the late afternoon. Near USM, I have at times encountered groups of several people walking abreast that don't feel the need to yield to other traffic. 2) In Bassfield and extending a few miles to the south, I have had numerous encounters with four-wheelers on the trace. A few are very polite and slow down near cyclists. More frequently, the four-wheelers run at high speeds and seem to enjoy "buzzing" cyclists. Once I even encountered a group of 6 or 7 four-wheelers that circled me before racing away. Despite these factors, I continue to enjoy the LLT, but I do find myself being extra cautious.

Luis Ramos Sandoval
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jun 19 2017
Road biking

Una de mis pistas favoritas de hoy en adelante

Preston Johnson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Jun 08 2017
Hiking

Awesome hike! Be prepared to see lots of people. I did 8.1 miles out and back, 16.2 total miles. Not a lot to see, but very clean and well maintained. Entire trail is paved and it's free to get in. You can park next to the dorms at USM,which is probably the most secure area. Everything is labeled, lots of rest areas and a few restrooms along the way.

Linda Monaco
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Dec 19 2016

wonderful

Daddy K
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue Jun 07 2016

Left from the USM station, walked about a mile past the Jackson Road station, turned around and walked back. Great walk, great trail, hardly any traffic on the trial at all (Saturday morning). I would recommend to anyone.

Mike Brett
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue May 31 2016

A Rails to Trails project, is an easy ride. The downtown section goes through sketchy neighborhoods and industrial sections, so we started near the edge of town. An enjoyable ride.

Teresa Everett
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue Mar 08 2016
Road biking

Excellent

Thomas Haring
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Sep 02 2015
Hiking

If you are looking for a good, easy-going, paved trail, then this trail is for you. I walk my dog on it just about every day. It can have a lot of people on it though

Hunter Deerman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarWed Jun 10 2015

Good way to enjoy the day.

Philip Steen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMon Jul 01 2013
Mountain biking

There's several Mountain Bike Trails near the Jackson Station, roughly 5 miles from the trail head by USM. Turtle Loop, Roller Coaster, and Rail Shed Loop are a few of them. These are fun trails, challenging enough for skilled riders & easy enough for newbies. The trails are mostly shaded, and well maintained by local riders.

Ed Baronowsky
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFri May 31 2013
Road biking

Made this ride from the water tower at the SMU campus to Prentiss and back . Plenty of country and wildlife to see along the way. Very enjoyable ride. A good distance test for anyone. I logged 83 miles on the odometer. Plenty of rest areas and the asphalt surface is in great repair. The trail is very well maintained also. Take water, lunch and enjoy....

Don Andrews
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFri May 31 2013
Road biking

nice trip down from the upper end but no place to camp

Jason Wheat
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Apr 09 2013
Hiking

Very peaceful once you're outside the city. Well maintained, great smooth ride for roadies. There is also a network of mountain bike trails just past the first rest area a few miles west of the Hattiesburg gateway.

Doug Krebs
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun Apr 07 2013
Road biking

Good road biking trail not much elevation change. Was a bit crowded by the university. Was on trail around 5-6PM during the week.

Shelley Sheppard
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Sep 25 2012
Running

The trace is paved so it's great for road biking and running. There are off-road trails close to the Jackson depot that great for mountain biking and trail running.

Walter Haralson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat Apr 14 2012
Hiking

great app great trail...!!!

Cary McGehee
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSun Jun 21 2020
Hiking
View Cary's Recording
Kevin Cox
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jun 14 2020
Hiking
View Kevin's Recording
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