Beckley Creek Park has many walking, hiking and biking trails. But which one is right for you? As an Interpretive Ranger, we get this question a lot, so this post is designed to help you find the perfect trail to meet your needs:
Louisville Loop: A paved trail perfect for walking, running, biking or rollerblading (anything non-motorized!) Currently, you can follow this trail for 7 miles beginning at the trailhead off Shelbyville Road (William F. Miles Trailhead) and ending in Pope Lick Park off of Taylorsville Road. This trail has a few minor hills along the way but should be appropriate for all fitness levels. Young or beginning bikers may prefer the flat 2 mile stretch that begins at the Thornton Bridge (near Creekside Center and the Egg Lawn) and ends at the Great Wall (the hill carrying the road and Loop up to Echo Trail at the southern entrance of Beckley Creek Park). 13 additional miles of the Loop coming soon (end of 2015)!
Coppiced Woods Trail: A 1.87 mile earthen hiking and mountain bike trail. You can begin the trail at the parking lot near Angler Lake (William F. Miles Lakes) and end along the paved Louisville Loop. This trail is mostly shaded and gives you a pleasant feeling of seclusion in the woods. Hikers and bikers need to be aware of each other and use caution when coming around corners. This trail is best suited for those physically able to walk up and down hills and easily maneuver around tree roots or other natural obstacles. And remember, if the trail is muddy, hike elsewhere so as not to cause trail damage.
Egg Lawn Signature Loop: A paved, circular trail for walkers and runners only. This .7 mile trail is perfect for those who enjoy walking or running around the 22-acre lawn, watching people playing, flying kites or picnicking. No bikes allowed on this trail please!
Sycamore Trail: A .4 mile trail for hiking and biking. This trail is great for families with small children. It’s just a short distance from Creekside Center and has several access spots where you can walk down to the gravel bar along Floyds Fork. This is a popular spot to fish, search for fossils or freshwater muscle shells, or to catch crayfish. Just remember, fossils must remain in the park.
Black Willow Trail: A 1.69 earthen hiking trail. This trail gives hikers a scenic tour of the Humana Grand Allee section of the park. You will enjoy walking through fields of wildflowers, spending time in the woods, and walking along Floyds Fork. This trail is suitable for people of all fitness levels and easily connects with the Loop and the .5 mile Humana Grand Allee trail (including the Boardwalk over the Allee Wetlands!)
Valley of the Giants Trail: An earthen trail just over a half mile for hiking and biking in the Distillery Bend section of the park. Hikers and bikers enjoy following this trail under the canopy of giant sycamore trees. It’s a short trail along the water ideal for visitors of all ages and fitness levels.
Dogs are welcome to join in your hiking adventure on any of The Parklands’ trails, but please keep them on leashes and under your control, and pick up after their messes.
Happy Hiking and Biking! And be sure to stop in the PNC Achievement Center if you have questions regarding our trails- we’re here to help you get the most out of your Parklands experience.
Story by Suzy Stoffel. Suzy is an Interpretive Ranger at The Parklands. She enjoys helping children and families increase their scientific literacy through all the great programs and classes the park has to offer. When she’s not at the park working she’s usually here with her family hiking or biking (her son is pictured here at one of the entrys to the Black Willow Trail). Suzy is originally from Portland, Oregon but has spent time teaching and coaching volleyball in New York and Michigan.