Birmingham’s 3 mile High Ore Line Trail to Red Mountain Park is now open to the public

High Ore Trail Ribbon Cutting on August 2, 2019. Photo courtesy of the Freshwater Land Trust

This weekend Birmingham officially opened the High Ore Line Trail to the public.

Beginning in Midfield at the Jefferson County Western Health Center, the High Ore Line Trail runs three miles along an old railroad line, where it ties into Red Mountain Park’s new entrance and parking lot on Venice Road. The trail is mostly flat and off road and provides an accessible place to walk or bike in Greater Birmingham’s outdoors.

Birmingham, Alabama, Red Rock Trail System, Freshwater Land Trust, Rotary Trail, High Ore Line Trail
High Ore Line Trail. Photo via Freshwater Land Trust’s Instagram

Visitors can park and access the trail at the health center (631 Bessemer Super Hwy, Birmingham, AL 35228) or the new Venice Road parking lot (33.4403123, -86.8892199).


3rd Trail Opened this Summer

Ribbon Cutting at the Clairmont Avenue Walking Trail on July 13, 2019. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

The High Ore Line is Jefferson County’s third new trail to open this summer, following Five Mile Creek Greenway in Gardendale (2 miles) and Clairmont Walking Trail in Birmingham (1 mile).

Growing Red Rock Trail System

According to a Freshwater Land Trust news release, in 2012, the City of Birmingham won a competitive Department of Transportation TIGER grant for $10,000,000 in order to develop active transportation routes in Birmingham. With this funding, the City of Birmingham, Freshwater Land Trust, Jefferson County Health Department, and many partners have built 14 trail miles throughout Birmingham. The first two miles of High Ore Line Trail opened in 2016.

With its third and final mile complete, High Ore Line now connects Red Mountain Park to Jefferson County’s growing Red Rock Trail System.


“We are thrilled to open this new portion of High Ore Line and hope it will continue to be a valuable asset to the community,” said Carolyn Buck, Freshwater Land Trust Red Rock Trail Director. “With each trail opening, we are one step closer to our goal of building and connecting 750 miles of trails in Jefferson County.”

The High Ore Line project includes a new parking lot and entrance to Red Mountain Park.

Mayor Randall Woodfin with fellow civic leaders. Photo courtesy of Freshwater Land Trust

“The High Ore Line Trail itself is beautiful. Built on an elevated rail bed, the trail is level with the tree canopy, which is especially pretty in the spring and fall. And it provides beautiful views of Valley Creek year round,” said T.C. McLemore, executive director at Red Mountain Park in an interview this past spring with Bham Now.

Aerial view of the High Ore Trail. Photo by AirFowl.

Adopt a part of the Red Rock Trail

Back to Carolyn Buck, Freshwater Land Trust Red Rock Trail Director’s comment about “connecting 750 miles of trails in Jefferson County.”

Goodwyn Mills Cawood volunteers first workday on the Jones Valley Trail. Photo courtesy of the Freshwater Land Trust.

To make the Red Rock Trail System a success, the community needs to step up and adopt a portion of the trail.


All are welcome to participate –  local civic organizations, church groups and businesses. Even families can adopt a mile.

It’s a great way to give back to your community. Adopt a trail today.

Author: 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.