Monday, August 20, 2018

Seven Oaks Preserve Trail

One of our favorite nearby trails is in Catawba Lands Conservancy's Seven Oaks Preserve in Belmont, just over 30 minutes west of Uptown Charlotte.

Good for both hiking and trail riding, the Seven Oaks Preserve Trail, part of the Carolina Thread Trail, is 2.8 miles (one way).
The flat, natural surface, out-and-back trail hugs the banks of Lake Wylie, winding through hardwood forests and wildflower fields. It offers plenty of shade and opportunities to spot wildlife.

The biggest obstacles along the trail are roots and rocks. The trail also sports a handful of wooden footbridges. It's perfect for a hike and a pleasant place to ride for beginners and experienced bikers alike.

Two spur trails off Seven Oaks Preserve lead to the adjacent Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden (bikes are not allowed on these trails) if you want to include a destination in your outing.

This quiet trail is popular among locals, but never overly crowded. A good place to be in nature whether you're on foot or two wheels.

Bonus tip: The Cotton Candy Factory is a short drive from the Seven Oaks Preserve trailhead parking lot. Grab a sweet treat after your hike or ride. The shop is located in downtown Belmont, which also offers some restaurants if you want to grab a bite to eat.

Note: Bikes are not permitted on the trail after rain. If your bike leaves wheel prints, the trail is too wet to ride.

How to get there:
The Seven Oaks Preserve trailhead parking lot is located at 6900 S New Hope Rd, Belmont, NC 28012. The gravel lot has about a dozen parking spots and an information kiosk.

Don't forget to take:
  • Shoes: Comfortable hiking shoes will do.
  • Bikes and helmets: This is a great beginner trail.
  • Bug spray: Keep the mosquitoes, gnats and ticks at bay.

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