The sheer length makes it a challenge for hikers. Although, while it does pose a serious elevation climb (almost 3,000 vertical feet), not much else about the trail is strenuous.
Time To Complete
Hours vary throughout the year depending on the season, so check the arboretum’s website before you go.
On Leash Only
Fees: Free Monday-Friday; $5 per passenger car, minivan, and motorcycle, or $10 per passenger van or RV on Saturdays and Sundays. You have to register at the Visitor Center Desk if you want to hike this trail.
This 13.3 mile trail through an arboretum is sure to get your blood pumping due to its length alone. Because the area is so beautiful and quiet, you can expect to cross paths with wildlife like deer. There are plenty of other hikes in the arboretum that don’t require a full day to traverse, but if you’re looking for a challenge and an adventure in equal measure, you’ve found what you’re looking for in the Millennium Trail.
What Makes It Great
The trail is a loop so you can park, hike, and return to your car. Because it’s such a beast, it’s only moderately trafficked, so you can expect to pass a couple of people along the way, but you’ll largely have it to yourself.
A giant among an area full of significantly shorter one and two mile trails, Millennium Trail was (aptly) created in the year 2000 and upped the ante. Some parts of it are brand new, while others are incorporated sections of other trails and a couple of short roads. While it does take a certain fitness level to complete, the Millennium Trail is worth the effort because it takes you deeper into the forest in a way that none of the other trails do. Don’t worry—the trail is super well marked, so you don’t have to fret about losing your way.
You can expect relatively long segments of the trail to be level with challenging ascents and declines in between, but you won’t encounter anything too strenuous. It crosses a cemetery at one point, which is great for a little break and reflection—something that not many other trails can offer. Pack enough water to last the entirety of your trip.
Who is Going to Love It
Anyone with a fascination for learning (you’ll be in a research forest, after all) or a love for a long, stamina-heavy hike will enjoy this loop trail. Unfortunately for bikers, their sport of choice isn’t allowed.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
From Louisville, take I-65 to exit 112, after which you’ll head east on Highway 245 for one mile. The arboretum’s entrance will be on the right side of the road. You’ll access Millennium Trail specifically from Guerilla Hollow Road.