Laurel River Trail

EASY 63 reviews
#18 of 121 trails in

Laurel River Trail is a 7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Hot Springs, North Carolina that features a river 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.

DISTANCE
7.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1161 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

whitewater kayaking

forest

river

views

wild flowers

Nice hike along a very scenic whitewater rive, ruins and swimming This is a very nice hike along the Big Laurel River. You start the trail by heading south and will shortly come to a private residence that is posted "Private" Continue walking on the trail until you resume your hike in the forest. The trail is flat and for the most part, tree covered. You will notice numerous trees in the process of being "felled" by area Beavers. There are quite a few rapids and trout pools along most of the route. There are also some excellent camping spots and swimming holes along the way. About 3/4 of the way in there are some foundational ruins from the old town of Runion. After the ruins stay on the trail until you intersect the rail road tracks and hike back out.

5 days ago

Nice level hiking trail. Easy hike for a dog to walk. Great areas for a picnic and hanging by the water.

hiking
20 days ago

Great place for an older dog who still likes easy hikes and a little river play time. Flat terrain, well manicured trail, lots of little falls, and plenty of spots to take a dip on a hot day.

26 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

Really nice hike. Trail is flat with beautiful river views the whole way. Fun with the dogs.

hiking
2 months ago

2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

Wonderful trail! The views along the trail are gorgeous and the walk is mainly flat. It may be a 7 mile long trail but it doesn't feel like it because of the beauty there and the fact that it is a flat path. I loved this walk!

3 months ago

3 months ago

Beautiful trail. Nice walk and mostly flat.

3 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

This trail is beautiful. Its not marked but with Google maps it is easy to find. It is flat but definitely rocky in places. Many places along the trail make for great photo ops. I am looking forward to going back soon to run that trail. It was great!

hiking
7 months ago

Beautiful scenery, flat trail. Ate our lunch at the clearing at the intersection of the Laurel and French Broad with 2 folding chairs mentioned in another review. Coffee shop near the parking area is great.

hiking
7 months ago

Large trailhead parking area just beside Hwy 25/70 where 208 intersects. Reach a fork in the trail soon after leaving trailhead, either route is fine...they will join back up shortly. Pass 2 or 3 cabins and a couple of railway cars on the left. Beautiful scenic river with very unique rock formations for the rest of the hike. Come to the remaining fragments of Runion and continue on to an intersection with a rail line. Cross the tracks and scramble down the other side passing the confluence of Big Laurel Creek with the wide and the French Broad River. Someone's even left a couple of folding chairs to sit and gaze at the river before heading back. Trail was a great way to spend the afternoon. It took us about 3 hours walking time.

7 months ago

8 months ago

Easy path, shaded and follows river. My dog enjoyed playing in the water. Thankfully we did not encounter any snakes, which I later read were plentiful here. We went on a Sunday afternoon, and there were several other families there. Would recommend going on a weekday.

8 months ago

Pretty trail that follows the Laurel River until it meets the French Broad. According to our tracking app, it was over 8 miles (so not sure which was off). Flat and shady the whole way. Our 8 and 9 year old boys did fine. We had a picnic on rocks by the river along the way.

8 months ago

9 months ago

Trail is actually a little over 8 miles. Super easy hike. Not one I would normally pick but the wild flowers were beautiful.

hiking
9 months ago

Great hike, flat easy, shady, but very rocky trail boots recommended, beautiful swimming holes and waterfalls entire length of trail, very popular on weekends. If you go swimming or bring dogs off leash beware of copperheads, I see at least one every time I go either in water or in rocks on bank so much so I don't enjoyong swimming unless in one of the big holes with lots of people and I dont let dogs run the riverbank off leash.. love this trail beautiful after good rain.