The One Hikeable Lake Near Charlotte That's Simply Breathtaking In The Fall
The weather may be getting cooler in the QC, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a great time for a fall hike on the weekend! Bundle up and visit the McDowell Nature Preserve on Lake Wylie. It’s a great place to take an easy hike while enjoying the beauty of fall on the lake.
McDowell Nature Center and Preserve is Charlotte's oldest nature preserve.
This preserve was established to protect the 1,132-acre forest and rolling hills surrounding one of the area's most well-known lakes. The preserve offers guests a host of activities to participate in when visiting and has many hiking trails with the most magical views of the lake.
There are 7 miles of hiking trails winding through the beautiful fall landscape.
Trails are mostly easy or moderate difficulty, making this a great place for hikers of all skill levels.
Dogs are welcome at the park on a leash, so bring your best furry friend to check out the views with you when you go!
At this time of year, a carpet of red, orange, and yellow leaves will crunch under your feet as you start down the trails into the forest.
Pine cones and acorns fill the forest.
Kids will love hunting for these natural treasures on your hike.
You may come across some of the unique flora and fauna that only lives on land near the water.
This exotic fungi grows on an old log near the lake bed, creating a beautiful and unusual sight.
The trails at the McDowell Nature Preserve offer many beautiful lakeside views.
The 2.3-mile Charlotte Trail is the easiest and is great for beginners looking to enjoy a scenic hike without too much difficulty.
You may even come across other natural wonders throughout your hike at McDowell Nature Preserve.
Like this fallen tree - dramatic, yet still beautiful - in the middle of the forest.
If you go in the late afternoon, you may be able to catch the view of the gorgeous sun setting over the lake.
There are quite a few clearings on the trails where the lake is in full view, allowing the possibilities of capturing such a splendid sight.
There is nothing more relaxing and peaceful than taking a moment to enjoy the natural beauty this preserve offers.
After seeing a view like this, it will be hard to leave!
It's not too late to get out to McDowell Nature Preserve and see the North Carolina leaves changing before they fall from the trees.
It's one of the best fall experiences we've had around the QC! Once you go, you'll want to keep coming back year around to soak in the beautiful lakeside views.
Have you been hiking this fall? Where’s your favorite spot to enjoy an autumn hike? Let us know in the comments! We’re always looking for fun new spots to explore, and don’t forget to share photos from your adventures on the
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