Little River Regional Park

Made possible by

Photos

About

Summary

Written by

Joe Miller

Destination Distance From Downtown

60.7 miles

Difficulty

3 of 5 diamonds

3

Time To Complete

45 minutes to 2 hours

Review

There are precious few hiking opportunities in northern Durham and Orange Counties counties, which is unfortunate. The Piedmont hills here rise a little higher, the air temperature a wisp cooler (sometimes to the point where a winter rain throws cold water on a hike in Raleigh, it blankets northern Durham/Orange with an inviting layer of snow). Fortunately, there is at least one option: Little River Regional Park.
This relatively new (2004) 391-acre park includes 7 miles of hiking trail and 7 miles of mountain bike trail. While the annual Little River Trail Run includes the singletrack mountain bike trail in its 10-mile option (which you can find here)  the route we suggest sticks to the hiking-only trail and runs about 5. (We eschew the mtb trail because there's enough hiking trail here that we can; some runners aren't comfortable sharing the trail with fleet-of-tread mountain bikers.) From the parking area head down the gravel road near the rest rooms for a quarter mile to the main trail junction. Here, pick up the 1.8-mile South River Loop Trail, which will give you a taste of the Little River and the hardwood forest that dominates the preserve. The loop brings you back to the trail junction; this time, take the Ridge Trail, a 1.5-mile out-and-back. This trail climbs a mellow ridge to its apex. Here, pick up the 1.2-mile North River Loop, which takes you down to the stream, then back up to the top. The mellow descent back down the Ridge Trail and the short, quarter-mile climb back to your car is a nice way to end your run.   More info: Triangle Land Conservancy here;  Orange County Department of Environment, Agriculture, Parks & Recreation (site manager) here and at 919.245.2660 (park office); Eno River Association here. Maps: Triangle Land Conservancy here, also available at park office. Getting there from downtown Chapel Hill here.

Similar Local Trail Running Spots

See all

More Chapel Hill Activities

View Chapel Hill

More Little River Regional Park Activities

Chapel Hill Recommendations

Location

Little River Regional Park

301 Little River Park Way
Rougemont, NC, 27572
36.16255, -78.971009

Get Directions