4 resources you can use on National Take a Hike Day in Birmingham, Saturday, November 17

Freshwater Land Trust
Leadership of Dynamite Hill-Smithfield Land Trust.  Photo courtesy of Freshwater Land Trust.

Happy National Take a Hike Day Birmingham!

On Saturday, November 17, the Magic City will be celebrating with communities throughout the country National Take Day. Bham Now has identified 4 resources and places you can use to successfully take a hike today!

Check them out.

They are all open to the public and accessible. And, by the way, after a rainy and cold week, the weather is expected to be perfect – clear skies and 60 degrees. On top of that, both Alabama and Auburn are playing lousy opponents.

No excuses to get out and take a hike!

The list

Red Rock Trail System

Enon Ridge Trailhead. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now.

Jefferson County’s massive trail system already includes 100 miles of trails. Birmingham hiking enthusiasts have plenty of hikes to explore throughout the county. Many of your favorites, such as Railroad Park, Kiwanis Vulcan Trail,  Rotary Trail or Mountain Brook’s Jemison Park Greenway, are part of this system.

Here is a helpful map, and please visit the Freshwater Land Trust website to “find a trail” in your neighborhood.

Ruffner Mountain

Photo from Ruffner Mountain’s Facebook page.

Ruffner Mountain, Birmingham’s 1000+ acre nature preserve has scheduled three specific events for National Take a Hike Day.

    • Birmingham Mountain High Hikers Weekly Hike – This hike is typically a moderate 2.5 to 3 mile, from the Ruffner Mountain Nature Center to Hawks View. Hawks View is one of the tallest peaks at Ruffner Mountain with beautiful views of the Birmingham skyline. The group hike starts at 7am. Meet in the parking lot at Ruffner Mountain.
    • Storytime on the Mountain -The Ruffner staff will have storybook reading to small kids at the Ruffner Mountain Nature Center from 10 to 10:30 a.m.
    • Mining History Hike – Local mining historian, Gary Bostany, will lead a moderate 2-mile hike highlighting Ruffner Mountain’s impact on the local mining industry. The hike will take place from 1 to 4pm.
    • Of course, if miss any of these specific events, just gather up family and friends, checkout info about the trails at the visitor center and venture out.

For more information, please visit:  www.ruffnermountain.org.

Red Mountain Park

Red Mountain Park’s Butler Snow Sensory Trail. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

Red Mountain Park offers something for everyone. They have 15 miles of hiking trails and if you have accessibility needs contact Red Mountain Park about their NOMADs,  two high-powered off-road wheelchairs.

Make sure to also bring your child to the new Butler Snow Sensory Trail.

Oak Mountain State Park

Photo via Oak Mountain State Park

Yes, it’s a bit of a drive from the city center, but Oak Mountain State Park is worth it.  There is a small fee to get in the park, and while you are there checkout not only the trails, but also the Alabama Wildlife Center.

Here are the most notable trails:

  • The Lake Trail is 2.3 miles with some incline and ample views of Double Oak Lake.
  • Maggie’s Glen is a scenic spot that doesn’t require too much effort to access. From the north trailhead, take the yellow or white trail.
  • Kings Chair is a stunning but more strenuous hike, requiring 4.2 miles round trip and a good bit of climbing.

Good luck celebrating National Take a Hike Day!


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Pat Byington
Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.
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