Explore the most popular hiking trails near Olive Hill with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

hiking
6 days ago

I’ve always loved Carter Caves!!! Get out an ‘splore’ KY!!! It’s the most beautiful state!!!

Beautiful. Relaxing.

Great trail. Mostly easy, with some moderate uphill sections. A few places were not marked very well, and there were a few places where unmarked trails branch off of the main trail. My advice- stay the course and don't make a turn if you're not sure. Although I did walk some of these trails for a bit to see where they went, then doubled back. You might be able to get lost if you go too far. Of course a good walking stick is recommended for the spider webs that you will encounter. Markers say to allow 6 hours for this trail, but it's easily done in much less if you're a frequent hiker. Also, Shangri-la arch is collapsing so be careful in this area. There are arrows painted on the rocks to help guide you, just beware if you travel this area especially after heavy rain, there may be falling or loose rocks.

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail for a few hour hike. 3 awesome formations with many other great sights! For sure moderate with a few steep climbs about half way through.

Go to the right when you start the trail. Better views right away.

Absolutely beautiful!

Was totally unexpected, and amazing. We are planning a return trip, there is so much to see and do.

5 months ago

Beautiful, easy, great place for kids of all ages to play in the creek. A must see

hiking
5 months ago

enjoyed this trail. beautiful and challenging

hiking
6 months ago

Nice short trail. Wife and I did it in 20 mins while waiting on a cave tour to start. Definitely recommend if you have time to kill.

hiking
6 months ago

Hiked the trail last weekend and it was great. Definitely recommend getting a permit for Horn Hollow Cave from the gift shop and checking it out, it's about the half way point on the back side of the trail.

hiking
7 months ago

A nice trail to see Spring wildflowers on. Lots of mountain laurel in spots. A nice hike any time of year.

Awesome caves and beautiful bridges! Sooo worth the hike!

hiking
7 months ago

We hiked this trail after a week of heavy rain, this made for some great pics. I would highly recommend this trail. There are a lot of up and downs with one steep climb towards the end. Trail is very well marked. We will definitely be doing this trail again in the spring.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Gorgeous trail, but it's poorly maintained and poorly marked in quite a few places.

hiking
Monday, August 28, 2017

At the beginning of the hike I encountered heavy foot traffic along with a boring and fairly easy trail that ran parallel to a road. However, around the half way point the trail opened up tremendously. With plenty of side attractions, this trail made up for the slow and boring start.
The rock formations were incredible, along with the large amount of cliffs and over hangs, this trail offers an additional rock climbing area which looked like it'd be a blast.
Follow that up with the Fern Bridge and the Raven Bridge, you can spend easily 2-3 hours on this trail and not get bored.
The trail was marked well, and I even went down to the lake afterwards to sit and rest.

hiking
Saturday, August 26, 2017

beginning of trail is boring and has you cross a road 2 times. not so much off the beaten path, with some road noise in some places. However the plus side the trail was marked fairly well, in good condition, plenty of places to explore off trail. Once you get to the second half the rock formations are beautiful and there is actually an area where you can climb and repel about a 100ft rock face if you bring the proper gear. the second half makes up for the first. I did the trail going counter-clockwise from the trailhead.

Gear I Used on the trail:
water
string bag

Good trail. Lots of hills and rocks. Challenging but overly so.

hiking
Monday, July 17, 2017

It's our favorite trail at Carter Caves. It's beautiful and a great work out!

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Super easy and pretty

hiking
Saturday, June 10, 2017

Short, easy trail to a large natural bridge. Follow the white blazes. Starts at the Welcome Center, so makes a nice add-on if you come here to take a cave tour or hike one of the park's more substantial trails.

hiking
Saturday, June 10, 2017

Fantastic loop hike that passes three large natural bridges: Fern Bridge, Raven Bridge, and Smoky Bridge. If you tack on the short 0.5 mile Natural Bridge Trail, which also starts at the Welcome Center, you can see 4 large natural bridges in less than 4 miles. The difference between maximum and minimum elevation is only about 200 feet, but you will cover that 200 feet multiple times. Overall, best hike at Carter Caves State Resort Park.

Super fun for my husband and I. We even brought our two dogs and explored the caves that you can get into without guides. Super wet but great time

hiking
Monday, May 29, 2017

Definitely an easier than moderate trail with minimal elevation change. Access the trail head by the Saltpeter cave sign across the street from the gift shop/welcome center parking lot. The middle bridge, Raven must be accessed by going about .1 mile off the TBT, the other two are directly on the trail. Smokey Bridge is the first if you clockwise and probably the most impressive. You can follow the red trail blazed to decent down to it. Lastly is Fern bridge going clock wise, which is pretty impressive as well. Lots of smaller caves along the trail as well as lots of rock formations. Over all, not much going on between the bridges, but the river can be seen when the trees don't have their leaves.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Starts out across the parking lot from the visitor center building/gift shop, walk up the concrete steps and to the right, there will be a sign. The trail itself has quite a few ups and downs, we are fairly experienced hikers and feel this is morw moderate than easy. Several small caves and rock features with options to get permits for Horn Hollow and Laurel caves which are accessible along the trail. Fun, short hike that is fully shaded.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Great trail with lots of scenery and challenging terrain, well worth the 3 hour drive I made.

hiking
Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Beautiful!

hiking
Monday, April 24, 2017

Gorgeous rock formations and caves

Completed this trail in the fall. It has a perfect blend of scenery and variety of terrain to keep it interesting throughout the duration of the trail.

I recommend hitting the trail early and bringing a lunch, and not rushing through this one. It is so much better to really appreciate the scenery on this one and take your time.

hiking
Sunday, April 02, 2017

Another great hike at Carter Caves. Beautiful scenery. I really enjoyed Shangra La arch. It was a lot nicer than what I'd seen in pictures. A good half way spot to sit and rest for a bit. A nice peaceful hike.

Load More