Mountain Trail to Lake Carlton and Lake Wayne Wallace

HARD 107 reviews
#1 of 8 trails in

Mountain Trail to Lake Carlton and Lake Wayne Wallace is a 7 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Wilburton, Oklahoma that features a lake and is rated as difficult. 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.

Distance: 7.0 miles Elevation Gain: 1,230 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash




nature trips

bird watching








over grown


Located 5 miles north of Wilburton, Oklahoma on Hwy 2. The trailhead is located at the south end of the Deep Ford Campground, on the west side of the low water dam. You must cross the dam to get to the trailhead. In high water, it can be accessed from Cattail Pond Trail.

4 days ago

A really nice trail, well marked, great view. Lots of rock, lots of leaves. oh ya! it's a hard trail. The only thing I can subject is start earlier, because you will stop a lot to take in the sites.

5 days ago

Beautiful trail. Lots of steep inclines. Definitely a major leg workout. Even though there are a lot of blue markers along the trail, there are still a couple places where it's confusing. The first time you come to where the yellow marked equestrian trail crosses this trail, you need to walk directly at the pine trees. Also, coming back down the very steep incline was tricky to find all the blue markings as most of them are the blue paint marks rather than the metal signs. If you get to Ash Creek road, you could cross the street and continue onto the Cattail Pond trail and make it a fairly large loop (well over 7 miles). It took my friend and I 4.5 hours to complete the trail including a stop for lunch. A couple of downsides: (1) o much of the trail is deep in the woods that you miss a lot of the gorgeous scenery. (2) The trail doesn't really feature very good views of the second lake (Wayne Wallace). (3) Finding the trail head was a little confusing; you turn into "Fall Festival" area (quite a bit north of the trail head) and take that road as far south as it will go.

8 days ago

Did this trail 12/2 with my 2 dogs and we had a great time! Definitely some dramatic incline in a few spots that were made a bit hazardous because of fallen leaves. When we got to the bluffs over the lake we lost the trail for a second. It is very well marked so if you don’t see the blue markers for more than a minute or two you’re off trail. It was very secluded this time of year and we didn’t encounter a single other person the whole time which I loved. I’ll definitely be back.

washed out
1 month ago

Good trail. Took the mountain trail to the equestrian trail and followed the road back. Definitely will be back for more!

Beautiful view of the lake and well marked trails. There are some very convincing dummy trails that run parallel to the main trail but with worse footing and which ultimately disappear. If you can’t find a trail mark you may need to double check your last turn.

Wonderful scenery with a good degree of difficulty. Would probably be even better when the creeks have water for our dogs.

Nice hike with good views. Well-maintained. Lots of spider webs and ticks this time of year. Changed to a loop trail by using the park road on the way back.

6 months ago

Starts very easy with several sudden sharp inclines. Really loved the change in landscape: some woods, some rocks. Great views! HOLY TICS! We picked off so many once we got to the turn around, we just decided to walk back on the road. Definitely unprepared for that. Overall very thrilled with the experience and will be able to handle the tics better on the next go-around! There is a gift shop and nature/history center that was a nice part of the stop as well. Enjoy your time and take it easy!

7 months ago

Good trail and I would rate it as hard but I’ve hiked much worse. Lots of creek crossings after yesterday’s rain and slippery. I did slip and fall on one of the crossings. Some climbs on this often rocky trail and I was wishing I had taken my trekking poles. Nice views from the top and I never saw anyone else on the trail so it was a peaceful hike.

7 months ago

I started out on the trail but about 2 mi in ended up down by the water with just Rocky Cliffs behind me got a little scratched up going up and down the cliffs and had to lift the dog up and keep him behind me going downhill so he didn't slide right off the end by the time I found the trail was exhausted from climbing the cliffs so ended up headed back still had fun but my legs are like jello

7 months ago

I did the "out" portion and continued on Cattail Pond Trail and several other trails to the east to make a 10-12 mile loop. It was a cloudless spring day and the wildflowers were in bloom. There was steam coming off the lakes when I started at 8 am. Canada geese were swimming on the water. The elevation gain is not difficult and views from the top are quite good. This was worth the drive from Dallas

8 months ago

Didn't do the entire trail as we didn't want to do an out and back. We took the blue trail back to the classroom trail then through the park back to the car.

8 months ago

Hiked this trail with my wife and four kids (4yo and 6yo and two infants in backpack carriers). It was challenging, but rewarding. The ascent to the bluffs above Lake Carlton was the most difficult: we were on hands/knees scrambling up the rocks at one point. The trail was really well marked though, and followed the route on AllTrails. There was good variation in the terrain, some switchbacks, several creek crossings, rocky sections, and lake views. One caveat: the total distance from Deep Ford to the end of the trail at Ash Creek was 4.7 miles, making the round trip out-and-back 9.4 miles. But, it was pretty, and we were very satisfied with this hike.

10 months ago

Trail was wet after a good bit of rain. But pretty. A few spots were challenging uphill, but overall pretty moderate. Trail is well marked, but must pay close attention or you will be off the trail before you know it.

11 months ago

We hike this trail this past weekend. It was after a few days of rain and our last hike of the day. Since it had been raining, we did have to cross the creek. It was a little challenging since the water was running pretty good but we made it.There wasn’t enough daylight left to do the whole hike. Plus the lady at the camp office told us not to go the whole way because part of it would be flooded. I will say that this hike was one of the most challenging I have ever done. I absolutely loved it, however it does require climbing the trail is a little hard to follow at times. You may discover muscles you never knew you had. Be sure that you look for the waterhole as you’re climbing up the mountain. It was running really good when we were there.I’m thinking that we didn’t go far enough to see the open part of the bluff. The view at the place where we had to stop was still a bit obstructed by the trees. I was a bit disappointed however, I do plan to go back and do the whole trail on another day. After an all day hike at the park, I will say that completing this trail was definitely a feeling of success! I definitely will be back!

Sun Dec 09 2018

Beautiful trail. With lots of photo ops. Took us about 3 hours one way to hike and stop for the many photo ops. Cliff area for great panoramic views is at Carlton Lake. You do need to pay attention in the middle of this trail as blazes are just blue paint and spotting them proves difficult sometimes.

Mon Nov 12 2018

I was a little disappointed with this trail. I hiked the Rough Canyon Tail before and even though it was a much shorter hike, it was more enjoyable. This was stated in another review but I will say it too: "Don’t use the trail maps provided by the State Park they are in no way accurate with the trails." I started at Deep Ford Campground and followed the blue blazes. I was very quickly off from the state park map. Blazes were easy to spot and follow though so I continued on. Took me to the Lake Carlton overlooks but I never got close to Lake Wayne Wallace so my way back, I attempted to stick more to the state park map. Following the yellow blazes (horse trail) kept me closer to the lake but even those did not follow the state park map. It did get me to a very nice overlook over Lake Wayne Wallace but I got turned around in a few places and had to bushwack a few times to get back to the blue blazes or I would of ended up on the wrong side of the lake and nowhere near my car. Regardless, that is not the reason for my low rating. I don't mind getting a little lost. The trail was loud - walking near Lake Carlton, you can hear the highway the entire time. The overlooks were not that great in the sense that you never really felt completely surrounded by nature. You could see the campgrounds, cars, bridges, buildings... Total at the end was 8.6 miles for me.

Sun Jul 22 2018

Pretty decent hike. Your back side will definitely feel it. Great scenery, best hike in OK so far. Overall, great adventure.

Mon Jul 02 2018

Trail is clearly marked! There are a few dry creek crossings where the trail is a little tricky to spot though. Make sure to grab a stick to knock down spider webs if you go in the morning.

Sat Apr 21 2018

Really enjoyed this trail. The nice lady in the gift shop had lots of great info about the various trails. There are dogwood trees everywhere and they are gorgeous right now.

Sat Feb 03 2018

We took Mountain Trail which is fairly well marked most of the way but once you pass all the bluffs and begin to descend down toward the lake it gets horribly confusing. There are tons of unmarked trail signs out there that are horse trails. Don’t use the trail maps provided by the State Park they are in no way accurate with the trails. However, the views are wonderful and there are plenty of restrooms about the trail head and along the service road.

Mon Jan 22 2018

Worth the hike. Nice view from bluffs overlooking the lake.

Mon Jan 22 2018

Great trail, nice and steep in the beginning and the views are pretty. The trail is SUPER well marked!

Mon Dec 18 2017

What a great hike! My wife, 7 yr old daughter and our two dogs hiked a good portion but turned back once the accent got too much for the little one. I’m a trail runner and can’t wait till we go back to give this a run! Our dogs absolutely loved it and we only saw one other person on trail! Bathrooms by trail head were clean and even had a shower. There’s a little blue water pump outside of it just a bit that we used to fill bowl up with water for dogs on our way out! Great views on the trail and a lot of geese flying over head! Definitely recommend this trail

Wed Dec 06 2017

Mon Sep 25 2017

This is a great single track trail, it does not seem heavily trafficked however it is very well maintained. I had the mindset that this trail was appropriate for mountain biking, due to reviews on alternate sites, a list claiming Robbers Cave had one of the state's best MTB trails and the park signs indicating that the trail was appropriate. With enough determination you CAN trek the trail with your bike, but I would recommend leaving the bike at home, it is really just baggage. Given that, the trail is great! there was not a dull moment. It is rocky, with very little overgrowth, and does have some substantial ascents and descents. This was really a "hike and bike" for me, I was just glad my bicycle is light because I would have been too frustrated to observe the area.

Sat Jul 01 2017

Nice long trail. Trail was well marked and easy to follow. Only problem we encountered was the spiders and spider webs across the trail. Definitely pick up a stick to knock them down as you go. Coming back was better cuz all the spiders and webs were gone. Pants are a good idea too cuz some parts of the trail are over grown and some of the plants are spiked. Challenging trail for sure but worth it.

Wed Mar 22 2017

Good hike. Very well marked and maintained trail. The hike is longer than what shows on this site. The trailhead at deep ford campsite shows 4.8 miles one way. My gps showed 9.9 miles round trip. The end of the trail was anticlimactic. It ends at a T with a sign for new trail. There is a very nice spot overlooking creek just before reaching end.. great resting place before the return.

Sat Jan 28 2017

Great hike. Weather was perfect. Trails were well marked!

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