One of the longest stretches of greenway in Charlotte, Mallard Creek and Clark Creek connect for just over 7 miles of uninterrupted running trail. The mostly shaded, paved and gravel surface trails follow their namesake creeks closely, providing a pleasant place to enjoy a long run in a more natural setting than a typical road route.
What Makes It Great
Piecing together a long run can sometimes be difficult in Charlotte. Neighborhood designers choose caul-de-sacs and dead ends over connecting stretches of through roads. So having the ability get 14 miles round trip on a mostly shaded and easy to run greenway is fantastic.
This section of trail is actually made up of two greenways: Mallard Creek and Clark Creek. Beginning at the Kirk Farm soccer field, the Mallard Creek Greenway travels west first as pavement, turning to gravel for just over a mile, and then back to pavement. Just after the pavement begins again, Clarks Creek Greenway Y’s off to the north while Mallard continues on generally west.
Through its travels, the greenways connect the university with several neighborhoods and elementary schools. It’s proximity to these population centers and its generally pleasant design make the trail a popular amenity to those in the university area. While the trail is plenty wide for its traffic, it is a good idea to watch for cyclists.
Who is Going to Love It
This is the trail for a long Saturday run. With few interruptions to break your flow, it’s a great place to slap on your headphones and crank out a half- marathon's worth of running. But without serious hills or technical areas, it’s also fine for a relaxing two mile jog. Visitors to the trail include serious distance runners and parents with jogging stroller looking for a bit of exercise.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
There are multiple parking options but if you want to start at one end instead of the middle, park at Kirk Farm Fields – 210 East Mallard Creek Church Road. Dogs are allowed but should be leashed.