Get ready to embark on an adventurous journey through the natural wonders of Alabama as we unveil the top-rated hiking trails to explore in 2023. From scenic landscapes to breathtaking waterfalls, Alabama offers a diverse range of trails that cater to all levels of hikers. Whether you’re a seasoned trekker or a novice explorer, these trails promise to lead you through some of the state’s most stunning vistas and hidden gems. Lace up your hiking boots, pack your backpack, and get ready to discover the best hikes in Alabama.
Best Hikes in Alabama
Alabama has some of the best hiking trails in the country, and the Walls of Jericho Trail, Hernandez Peak and McDill Point, and Kings Chair Loop are worth checking out. Each trail offers unique scenery and challenges, from waterfalls to stellar views.
1. Walls of Jericho Trail
Walls of Jericho Trail, Alabama 35745, USA
Location: Estillfork Mileage: 6.6-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Hard FYI: Popular for birding, camping, and hiking, this spot gets busy from March to November. Dogs are welcome on-leash. Remember to park on the AL side, near Clark Cemetery.
Wall of Jericho Trail
is worth the challenging hike! You'll be impressed with how well-marked the trail is, with paint marks on trees making it easy to follow. One of the highlights of the hike is the old cemetery of the Clark family from the late 1800s, which is pretty cool. And the waterfall at the end is a lot of fun - just be careful, it can be slippery. We highly recommend this trail to anyone looking for a fun and challenging hike.
2. Hernandez Peak and McDill Point
Hernandez Peak, Alabama 36266, USA
Location: Delta Mileage: 4.9-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Moderate FYI: This area is popular for camping and hiking, so expect to see others on the trail. It's open year-round and offers scenic beauty anytime. Dogs are allowed on-leash. Note that there's an entry fee for Cheaha State Park. Hernandez Peak and McDill Point
hike is a bit steep and rocky but worth it for the valley views. Don't miss the rocky overlook for awesome pics around two miles in and a plane crash site nearby about a half-mile from McDill Point. It's an epic hike with plenty of mountain vistas to soak in.
3. Kings Chair Loop
Kings Chair, Birmingham, AL 35242, USA
Location: Pelham Mileage: 4.2-mile loop trail Difficulty: Moderate FYI: This area is popular for birding, hiking, and running, so expect to see other people. Leashed dogs are welcome. There's an entrance fee for Oak Mountain State Park.
Kings Chair Loop
offers fantastic views. Begin at the North Trailhead, follow the Blue trail to Kings Chair, then return and continue on the Blue trail to the Red Blue connector. Finally, take the Red trail back to the trailhead. This trail has it all – uphill challenges, serene flat stretches, and stunning vistas from the top. It's a versatile trek with shaded and sunny sections through the forest, plus connections to other trails, including a mountain biking trail.
Best Short & Easy Hikes in Alabama
Discover the best short and easy hikes in Alabama, featuring picturesque destinations like Little River Canyon, Alum Hollow Trail, and Cheaha Falls. These trails offer a perfect blend of natural beauty and accessibility, making them ideal for hikers of all skill levels.
4. Little River Canyon
Little River Canyon, Alabama, USA
Location: Fort Payne Mileage: 1.4-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Easy FYI: Popular for hiking, mountain biking, and running, expect to encounter fellow explorers here. Leashed dogs are welcome in this area. Little River Canyon
offers a stunning hike featuring waterfalls, canyon rims, and sandstone cliffs. The trail is well-maintained but rocky, so closed-toed shoes are recommended. Arriving early is advised due to crowds. It's a perfect spot for swims, so don't forget your swimsuit.
5. Alum Hollow Trail
Land Trust of North Alabama: Green Mountain Nature Preserve Alum Hollow Trailhead, 13800 S Shawdee Rd SE, Huntsville, AL 35803, USA
Location: Huntsville Mileage: 2.2-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Easy FYI: This is a popular hiking area, so expect to encounter others on the trail. Dogs are welcome, but they must be on a leash. Alum Hollow Trail
in Green Mountain Nature Preserve is a fantastic hike with clear trail markings. The cave and waterfall along the route are breathtaking and great for photos. The trail is easily accessible, with additional intersecting trails for further exploration.
6. Cheaha Falls
Cheaha Falls, Lineville, AL 36266, USA
Location: Lineville Mileage: 2.1-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Easy FYI: This area is popular for birding and hiking, ensuring encounters with other visitors. The trail is open year-round and offers scenic beauty at any time. Cheaha Falls
in Talladega National Forest offers a nice trail with moderate slopes and a slight scramble at the end. The path includes two easy creek crossings, and there's an offshoot to the left at the waterfall that leads to the bottom of the falls.
Hardest Hikes in Alabama
Explore the most challenging hikes in Alabama, featuring the likes of Pinhoti Trail: Chief Ladiga Trail to CR 500, Pin-Chin-Sky Loop, and McDill Point via Pinhoti Trail. These trails offer a test of endurance and skill, rewarding hikers with epic views and a sense of accomplishment. Prepare for steep ascents, rugged terrain, and unforgettable experiences on these demanding trails.
7. Pinhoti Trail: Chief Ladiga Trail to CR 500 Location: Piedmont Mileage: 15.9-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Hard FYI: This trail is ideal for backpacking, hiking, and running, and you're likely to have a quiet experience with few other visitors. Dogs are welcome but must be on a leash.
Pinhoti Trail from Chief Ladiga Trail to CR 500
offers a challenging 15.9-mile out-and-back experience near Piedmont, Alabama. It's perfect for backpacking and hiking, providing gorgeous views. While the trail can be demanding, the southbound direction is slightly easier. Ample water sources are available, and the views shine best during the fall and winter seasons.
8. Pin-Chin-Sky Loop Location: Ashland Mileage: 19.3-mile loop trail Difficulty: Hard FYI: Popular for backpacking, camping, and hiking, this year-round trail offers both solitude and scenic beauty. Dogs welcome, some off-leash areas.
is a captivating trail with winding paths, stunning viewpoints, and diverse terrain. It offers panoramic views of lush forests, rolling hills, and vibrant wildflowers in spring. The well-maintained trail features rocky ridges, tranquil streams, and great campsites. Informative boards educate visitors about local flora and fauna - a nice plus!
9. McDill Point via Pinhoti Trail Location: Lineville Mileage: 16.8-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Hard FYI: This trail is ideal for backpacking, camping, and hiking, with fewer crowds from March to October. Dogs are allowed on a leash. McDill Point via Pinhoti Trail
in Cheaha Wilderness is a challenging 16.8-mile out-and-back trail near Lineville, Alabama, perfect for backpacking, camping, and hiking. The trail offers stunning seasonal views and includes the challenging "Stairway to Heaven." Expect a rocky terrain throughout the hike.
Best Waterfront Hikes in Alabama
Check out the finest waterfront hikes in Alabama, featuring Chinnabee Silent Trail, Chewacla State Park Trail, and Gopher Tortoise Trail. Explore picturesque lakes, charming streams, and lush landscapes as you embark on these captivating waterfront hikes.
10. Chinnabee Silent Trail
Chinnabee Silent Trail Parking Lot, AL-281, Lineville, AL 36266, USA
Location: Lineville Mileage: 7.3-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Moderate FYI: Popular for backpacking, camping, and hiking, expect company on the trail. Best to visit from March to November, and dogs are welcome on leashes.
Chinnabee Silent Trail
provides a tranquil forest hike with waterfalls and swimming spots. Cheaha Falls and Devil's Den are must-see highlights along the way. The trail culminates in a scenic view of Lake Chinnabee before retracing your steps.
11. Chewacla State Park Trail
Chewacla State Park, 124 Shell Toomer Pkwy, Auburn, AL 36830, USA
Location: Auburn Mileage: 2.5-mile loop trail Difficulty: Moderate FYI: Popular for birding, camping, and fishing, this spot gets busy from March to October. Dogs are welcome on leashes, and there's an entry fee for Chewacla State Park. Chewacla State Park Trail
in Chewacla State Park is conveniently located near Auburn and offers a scenic 2.5-mile loop. Enjoy a lovely walk by a waterfall and lake. Keep in mind the trail may not be well marked, so using the AllTrails app is a good idea.
12. Gopher Tortoise Trail
Gopher Tortoise Trail, Gopher Tortoise Trl, Orange Beach, AL, USA
Location: Gulf Shores Mileage: 2.2-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Easy FYI: Popular among birders, mountain bikers, and road cyclists, this trail offers year-round beauty and solitude during quieter times. Dogs are welcome on leashes. Gopher Tortoise Trail
is a perfect family-friendly path with diverse scenery, from woods to coastal waters. The flat and wide trail is easy to navigate, offering lovely lake views from a wooden boardwalk. While there's no shade and it can get hot, it's an ideal spot for a peaceful walk. Additionally, connecting trails allow for a full lake loop.
Best Winter Hikes in Alabama
Experience the best winter hikes in Alabama with Smith Mountain Fire Tower and Island Hop Trail, Pinhoti Trail: Bull’s Gap to Porter’s Gap, and Sougahoagdee Falls. These trails offer a unique beauty during the colder months, with scenic viewpoints, serene paths, and lovely water features.
13. Smith Mountain Fire Tower and Island Hop Trail
Smith Mountain Fire Tower, Jacksons' Gap, AL 36861, USA
Location: Jacksons Gap Mileage: 5.6-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Moderate FYI: This trail is ideal for hiking and walking, offering a peaceful experience with minimal crowds. Dogs are welcome but should be on a leash. Smith Mountain Fire Tower and Island Hop Trail
is a must-visit. The fire tower offers breathtaking 360-degree views of the lake and surroundings, while the Island Hop Trail takes you through stunning landscapes showcasing wildlife and wildflowers around the lake.
14. Pinhoti Trail: Bull's Gap to Porter's Gap Location: Hollins Mileage: 16.5-mile point-to-point trail Difficulty: Hard FYI: This trail is great for backpacking, camping, and hiking, with opportunities for solitude during quieter times of the day.
Pinhoti Trail section from Bull's Gap to Porter's Gap
is a challenging 16.5-mile point-to-point trail near Hollins, Alabama. It offers fantastic views and waterfalls, but hikers should be prepared for a long water carry over 12 miles along the ridge. There are ample camping spots available throughout the trail.
15. Sougahoagdee Falls
Sougahoagdee Falls Parking, Hickory Grove Rd, Houston, AL 35572, USA
Location: Houston Mileage: 3.5-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Easy FYI: This trail is a popular choice for hiking, so expect to come across other hikers. Dogs are allowed but must be kept on a leash. Sougahoagdee Falls
offers a straightforward hike with fantastic views throughout. The trail is easy to locate and follow, featuring beautiful rock formations, a waterfall, and a swimming hole along the way.
Best Hikes near Montgomery
Take on the best hikes near Montgomery with Lagoon Park Trail, Auburn University at Montgomery: Red Trail, and Forest Road Trail. These trails offer a variety of experiences, from scenic walks through wooded areas to well-maintained paths near campus. Whether you’re seeking a leisurely stroll or a more active adventure, these hikes provide enjoyable options for outdoor enthusiasts in the Montgomery area.
16. Lagoon Park Trail
Lagoon Park Trail, Gunter Park Dr E, Montgomery, AL 36109, USA
Location: Montgomery Mileage: 2.4-mile loop trail Difficulty: Easy FYI: Popular for birding, hiking, and mountain biking, this trail offers year-round beauty. Dogs are welcome on-leash, and quieter times provide solitude.
Lagoon Park in Montgomery, Alabama, is a gem of a park with tons to offer. You've got a fantastic softball complex, a bunch of tennis courts, an 18-hole golf course, and even a place called The Grill to grab a bite. And don't forget the beautiful
Lagoon Park Trail
that winds through forests, meadows, and creeks – perfect for a stroll or a nature escape.
17. Auburn University at Montgomery: Red Trail
Auburn University at Montgomery, 7400 East Dr, Montgomery, AL 36117, USA
Location: Montgomery Mileage: 1.9-mile loop trail Difficulty: Easy FYI: Popular for hiking, mountain biking, and running, this trail offers year-round beauty and solitude. Leashed dogs are welcome to join the adventure.
Auburn University Montgomery boasts three fantastic trails conveniently located near campus. With well-maintained paths, the
stands out as the longer of the two loop options, offering a loop through a picturesque wooded area. Keep an eye out for the unmarked yet maintained connecting trails between the blue, red, and yellow routes, and consider checking the campus trail map before embarking on your adventure.
18. Forest Road Trail Location: Montgomery Mileage: 2.1-mile out-and-back trail Difficulty: Easy FYI: Popular for hiking, mountain biking, and running, this trail offers year-round beauty and solitude. Leashed dogs are welcome to join the adventure. Forest Road Trail
in Lagoon Park offers a wide path with alternating gravel and pavement. It's a fantastic trail for an easy hike, clearly marked and easy to follow. Keep in mind that the trail is also used by bikers, so staying alert, especially if you're hiking with dogs, is important.
Have you enjoyed any of these trails? Think they are some of the best hiking trails in Alabama? What are the best places for a great hike in Alabama? Let us know your favorites – we’d love to hear from you!
Whether you’re looking for a hike with miles of trails or on the hunt for a great trail in Desoto State Park, this hub has everything you’ll need , and be sure to Try AllTrails+ For Free!
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More to Explore
The Best Hikes In Alabama
Does Alabama have good hiking trails?
Alabama's best hiking trails include:
What are the best months to hike in Alabama?
Summer hiking and camping can be enjoyable, but the heat can sometimes make it uncomfortable, especially during this scorching summer. Thankfully, the early fall brings cooler air, lower humidity, and more consistent weather conditions, making it a more pleasant time to explore the outdoors.