Piedmont Prairie Loop is a 2.6 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Charlotte, North Carolina that offers the chance to see wildlife 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.

Length2.6 miElevation gain137 ftRoute typeLoop
Dogs on leashKid friendlyHikingNature tripsWalkingBird watchingRunningViewsWildlife
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Getting There

Spectacular hike through tall prairie grassland preserve. Several large Oaks standing out to themselves. The entire trail follows an old dirt and gravel road through the prairie. To make a loop after reaching the north gate, turn around at that gate and take the second dirt road to the right. It will wind around an old home foundation with a fallen Oak, make a turn and head back south to follow the power lines back to intersect again with the main path.

McDowell Nature Preserve (980) 314-1128

Be on the lookout for large birds of prey. Several hawks call this area home. Deer also seem to be very common in this area.

From the Nature Center, turn left onto McDowell Parkway. Drive 0.5 miles and turn left onto NC-49 N (South Tryon Street). Drive 1.2 miles on South Tryon and turn left onto Shopton Road West. Drive 0.8 miles and turn left onto 4 Horse Road. Drive 0.6 miles to the end of the road and park near the gate.

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Reviews (41)
Photos (78)
Activities (38)
Completed (48)
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Catherine Germann
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Hiking

Couldn’t do half of the loop due to mud and standing water

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Savannah D.
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Hiking

Very nice trail although it was pretty muddy but that was just my dumbness not considering how much it rained

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Luis Rueda
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DM Lillian
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Hiking
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B Hutton
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HikingMuddy

Warning - do not let hounds swim in pond...there was a sign blown over when I picked it up it warned of blue green algea present,,,I think they will be ok but scared me.

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Corie Burke
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Walking

excellent wildflowers

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Luis Rueda
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Hiking
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Neil Emmett
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Hiking

Great trail. Watch out for snakes!!

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John Biasi
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HikingOver grown

Nice secluded lightly trafficked trail. You get road and airplane noise at spots. The trail is not well marked. There are trees and shade on the last 1/4 to 1/3 of the trail. The All Trails map is a bit off. There are two left turns toward the northern road. Take the last one. When you get to the picnic tables, turn left. It’s mostly all woods from that point. From there, you’ll walk a ways. Take a left from the two lane trail to the one lane trail. It’s overgrown, but it’s the correct trail. You’ll wind through the woods and end up back at the trail head.

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Analisa Wall
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HikingMuddy

This was a nice little loop with zero to almost no shade. Great for joggers or to just walk- almost no uphill or any scrambles.

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Ally Warner
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HikingRocky

it's mostly a gravel trail. perfect for morning or evening walks because there are not many trees that would give shade. the pond is no fishing. saw some deer laying.

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Brett Dupree
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Hiking
First to Review

Spectacular hike through tall prairie grassland preserve. Several large Oaks standing out to themselves. The entire trail follows an old dirt and gravel road through the prairie. To make a loop after reaching the north gate, turn around at that gate and take the second dirt road to the right. It will wind around an old home foundation with a fallen Oak, make a turn and head back south to follow the power lines back to intersect again with the main path.

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Nicole P
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Ryan Gilroy
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Dan Robertson
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Kelsey Karwisch
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amanda crawford
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Chandler Wilson
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Tuneeshaw Jepsen
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Tom Ballard
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Matthew Martin
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Brett Dupree
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Matthew Martin
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Marissa Gilroy
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Ryan Gilroy
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Matthew Martin
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Carla Perscky
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Mason A
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Tina Eastman
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Chris Simmons
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