Badin Lake Trail is a 5.2 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near New London, North Carolina 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 but must be kept on leash.

5.2 miles
301 feet

dogs on leash

kid friendly





mountain biking

nature trips

trail running






wild flowers





washed out

This trail is a great day hike along the shoreline of Badin Lake. It is great for couples, kids or groups. Badin Lake Trail (Loop) is listed on the map as 5.6 miles. However, the area around Arrowhead Campground loops in a paved figure-eight pattern for bike riders. This can be excluded from the trail, reducing the total length to 5.2 miles.

14 days ago

great trail. nice scenery.

1 month ago

Nice loop with about 2/3 of the distance along Badin Lake. Some up-and-down but mostly flat. Passes several campgrounds and several established primitive lakeside campsites. Well marked with white paint blazes. Well-maintained considering it receives little traffic. Overall, probably the best dayhiking loop in Uwharrie National Forest.

2 months ago

Great hike for exercise. I would wait for lake season to end to do it again. Did not like hiking through occupied campsites on lake. You hear lots of noise from cars, boats and jetskis.

3 months ago

Nice trail and great loop by lake and in woods. Only downside is litter by lake side of trail.

4 months ago

It's a nice trail with good views of the lake. It is very easy to follow with the exception of the area near the boat ramp (you have to cross a large parking lot to pick the trail back up). The major drawback to this trail was the trash. There are campsites along the lake and many had been trashed over the weekend. There were beer cans everywhere and one group appeared to have put a whole camping chair in the fire and left it. Personally I think things like that take away from the experience, but overall it was still a decent hike.

4 months ago

Really nice hike - well marked except at the Cove Boat Ramp. We exited the woods and wandered around trying to find the rest of the trail. We eventually did though - took about 2 1/2 hours. Pretty and very few people on it. Unfortunately there is some litter near the trailheads which spoiled the hike a little for me.

6 months ago

Fairly easy trail mostly along the shoreline of Badin Lake. Keep an eye on the trail as there are many small rocks and roots to trip you up.

7 months ago

Nice hike, the views weren’t amazing but parts near the lake and river were nice. Fun wildlife lots of spring peepers, snakes, and ground skinks

8 months ago

Good stuff would love to come back and do a solo overnight and maybe even take advantage of the lake in the warmer months ahead.

10 months ago

I enjoyed this trail. I got to the Cove Boat Ramp area around 12:30PM, had my dog along with me, and didn't see a single person for the entirety of our hike. I imagine it would be prettier in the spring or summer, but regardless of season, the trail has a nice balance of wood/lake views. The only reason I'm giving it four stars is there were a few points where the markers were difficult to spot. I walked through several spider webs, but I'm happy to take that in exchange for a quiet, peaceful trek and lovely scenery :)

10 months ago

We loved this trail! Over 1/2 of the trail was along the lake and the rest were in beautiful wooded hills. The only difficulty in the hike was the length of the trek. Look forward to doing it again in the spring.

10 months ago

What a great hike! We were completely disorganized today and didn't get started on the hike till around 3 or 3:30. The trail has lots of nice fresh white blazes today, so no worries about losing the trail, although we did have to look sharp a time or two when the trail turned but we didn't. It was the Saturday after Thanksgiving, so we weren't the only ones on the trail, but there were moments of pure quiet, of wind in the trees and nothing else, and we city folk don't get that often. There are pit toilets at a couple of points on the walk, and we parked at a picnic area (something Point) and there was drinking water we could pump there. Great to have a nice, hilly, woodsy hike with views of a beautiful lake!

Sunday, October 01, 2017

Nice trail, mostly along the water. Beautiful views!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Comfortable hike. Good parking and toilet facilities by the fishing pier. Plenty of picnic sites by the water. Saw some wildlife and hardly any people. A beautiful spot.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Great hike. Didn't see a single person.

Monday, September 11, 2017

I have done this loop a couple times now with my dog, leaving from both the Badin Lake Campground and the Arrowhead Campground. It is an easy to moderate hike with easy to follow white blazes. This hike can be accomplished by almost any healthy adult and would be good for children.

There are some nice views of Badin Lake, and several spots to wade into the water or cast a line, if you are so inclined. There are several camping spots cleared along the trail. Some are in great condition and some have trash strewn about. Wildlife is what you would expect. We have never failed to flush multiple herons from their lakeside perches. Another review mentioned heavy spider webs. I had not found that to be the case in the past, but on my most recent hike in August I ran into a ton of webs beginning at Badin Lake Campground and for about mile North of there.

My favorite part of this trail is the section just North of King's Mountain Point, so if you are unsure of taking on the whole hike or just want to get a feel for the Uwharrie Forest, you can park at King's Mountain (where they have a fishing pier, bathrooms, picnic tables, and a well pump) and head out from there, then return.

In addition to King's Mountain Point, the trail passes through Badin Lake and Arrowhead CGs, where bathrooms and water refills are available. As a result, you can probably get away with starting out carrying as little as a liter of water per person, provided you refill at some point(s).

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Park at Cove Boat Ramp parking area. The lake view is nice. Great way to get up close and personal with nature. I met LOTS of spiders in their webs. Lots of animals and insects to see and hear. Trail is very poorly marked in places. Trail goes through people's campsites which is awkward. Tons of trash especially at all the empty camp sites. Hard to keep my usual minimum 3 mile an hour pace due to the terrain. Nice to visit once. Due to the insane amount of spiderwebs, poor markers and constant trash I don't feel the need to go back. Also some of the roads to access the parking had large potholes.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Some pretty views, but tons of trash.

Monday, March 13, 2017

We enjoyed the hike. Significant maintenance appears to have taken place with most of the trail clear and fresh trail markings in abundance. Very early spring meant lots of extended views.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Scenery around the lake is beautiful. The trail itself, not so much. Trail is in need of a lot of maintenance - extremely narrow - almost completely eroded into the lake in some spots. Trail markings in some areas are non-existent. Areas marked hikers only, no horses have horse droppings along the trail. Not a repeat hike.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Hiking on this trail was enjoyable, as it was a hike after all.

That being said, don't bother, go somewhere else. There were giant spider webs every 20 feet, and the trail was not marked well. There were several times when we had to guess which direction to go in as there were no signs, and several trails going in different directions.

Kind of a dingy place to drive through as well, we won't be back, altho im still glad we tried it.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

I loved this trail. You are right along the shoreline for the majority of the hike, which is great. It's a pretty flat trail which makes it an easy walk. The trail is not well maintained in places and it leads you right through people's campsites, which was awkward. You definitely have to keep your eye out for the white markers on the trees to keep you on trail bc it's easy to get off trail (but easy to get back on).

Sunday, June 05, 2016

This was a great hike this morning, my daughter and I loved the "white" trail around the edge of the lake. We also had her black lab with us. Lots of great views across the lake, our hike was about 6.1 miles.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Easy walk with great access to camping locations. Disappointed by the amount of garbage all along the trail (filled one large garbage bag and didn't even touch it).

Monday, December 29, 2014

Very easy trail. Hiked it with my 13yr old nephew and my dog in 2hrs. Some places are hard to follow white blaze trail marking but following the shoreline brings you back on trail. We saw 4 Blue Herrons along the shoreline in the small coves as well as a couple of deer. Easy access from our campsite at Arrowhead Campground.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

This trail was easy terrain however, watch for the white train markers sometimes it's very hard to see them also if you want to cut the hike short you could take the green trail when they intersect each other (but watch the horse droppings the green trail is also a horse trail)

Saturday, January 19, 2013

This is a great trail for couples, families and groups. There are several camping areas along the lake that convinced me to return in the future. I recommend this trail to anyone living in the area looking for a quick day hike without driving far.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Pleasant walk in the woods with a few steeper spots going up to the ridge.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Nice easy, with places too cool off.

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