Mississippi is an outdoor lover’s heaven, with eight national parks, 25 state parks, and half a dozen national forests. Hikers will discover thousands of routes to suit all levels of fitness, many of which run alongside the state’s magnificent sources of water. That said, what are some of the best hiking trails that Mississippi has to offer?
Hikers will find much to do in Mississippi, from beautiful trails in state parks like the Outcroppings Trail to ones that lead to gorgeous views like the Dunns Falls Trail. Hikers also enjoy searching for hidden waterfalls in the Clark Creek Natural Area, Bear Creek Trail, and beyond.
Outdoor enthusiasts visiting Mississippi will be spoiled for choice for outdoor recreation. Exhilarating and daring experiences abound, from spectacular vistas at Gulf Coast beaches to towering woods, rivers and lakes, and more. With that in mind, let’s explore some of the best destinations found in Mississippi that will enrich your hiking experience.
The Best Places To Go Hiking In Mississippi
The six National Forests in Mississippi give excellent possibilities for experiencing the outdoors on foot, whether you’re out for a day trek or an extended backpacking trip into the woods. Mississippi boasts 1.2 million acres of forest, which offers a wide range of topography and several lakes, rivers, and streams.
Some of the hikes are simple and suitable for families with little children. Some trails are suitable for half-day treks, while others may lead to overnight or longer hiking adventures.
So, starting with Clark Creek Primitive Trail, below are some of the best spots to consider when looking to satisfy your spirit of adventure with some outstanding trails found in Mississippi.
Clark Creek Primitive Trail, Clark Creek Natural Area
The Clark Creek Natural Area is home-based to over 40 waterfalls, making it ideal for ultra-scenic Mississippi hiking. This challenging lollipop loop follows a rugged terrain that includes a succession of leg-burning ascents and equally sharp descents.
Descend a gravel route from the trailhead, traveling southwest through hardwood woodland. Bear left at the Y-junction after 0.4 miles to begin the Clark Creek Primitive Trail loop. The route continues for another 3.8 miles, passing through rural areas with waterfalls cascading into rocky coves.
The route follows the streambed at points, ascends forested slopes at others, and provides marvelous views of the surrounding area.
The climb ends at the base of two waterfalls: one is a 25-foot cascade that falls into a rocky nook, and the other is a trio of 25-foot cascades that flow into a semi-circular cove. At mile 4.3, the trail rejoins Waypoint 2 and returns to the trailhead.
Bear Creek Outcropping Trail Near Dennis, Mississippi
Tishomingo State Park has 1,500 acres of stunning, diversified landscapes at the base of the Appalachian Mountains. Bear Creek Canyon, Mississippi’s unique rock canyon, is one of the park’s most important attractions.
Hikers may go through this canyon and around it to witness beautiful views of the surrounding region on the Bear Creek Outcropping Trail.
Bear Creek Outcropping Route is a 1.8-mile moderately trafficked circular trail with a waterfall in Dennis, Mississippi, and is suitable for hikers of all abilities. The path is open all year and is famous for hiking, rock climbing, and wildlife sitings.
The route is aesthetically appealing due to the different rock outcroppings. Around every corner, there is always something new to behold. Rock climbing is highly popular in the region, and it’s simple to see why once you see these bizarre formations.
A rope bridge spans Bear Creek, tempting hikers to unleash their inner explorer and brave the waters below! Hikers will feel as if they are traveling back in time to a prehistoric era because of the spectacular ferns and other greenery.
Along the walk, there are a few caves in addition to the outcroppings. Bear Creek Canyon is full of mystery! Because of Mississippi’s mild temperature, this path is utilized all year; thus, vacations may be organized at any time.
Tuxachanie Trail, Saucier, Mississppi
This short out-and-back trail is ideal for families who want to enjoy some wildflower-filled trekking. Along this well-kept walk to a gorgeous lake, you’ll pass through a variety of wetland settings. The Tuxachanie Trail continues for several miles after the upkeep for this trip finishes at Bigfoot Trail Camp.
The first five miles of the Tuxachanie Trail provide a variety of environments between the trailhead on Highway 49 and the Airey Campground. During the spring and summer, each provides distinct wildflower viewing possibilities.
The road passes through sloughs, streams, ponds, pitcher-plant bogs, and lowland swamps, among other wetlands. Acres of dry, sandy longleaf pine woodlands are interspersed throughout these moist environments. A little beech-magnolia woodland may be found about a mile from the trailhead.
This stretch of the route follows a historic abandoned logging railroad built by immigrants using hand tools and mule-drawn earthmovers in the early 1900s. Long rows of live oaks were planted at the site in 1935, and visitors entered the route via them.
The trail is relatively flat and comfortable to stroll, with multiple raised wooden footbridges. A horse trail runs beside the route for a short distance. Then, the route continues south through the deep forest to the POW camp along Bethel Road, where it ends.
Bakers Pond Trail, Falkner, Mississippi
Baker’s Pond Trail is a short trek with a beautiful payoff that goes right to a private, spring-fed pond. Along the way, the 1-mile walk offers plenty of natural beauty, including some unusually colored sand.
It’s a terrific method to stretch your legs without breaking a sweat because it’s short, sweet, and gorgeous. Baker’s Pond Walk is a sparsely used out and back trail with a lake in Falkner, Mississippi, suitable for hikers of all abilities.
The route is open all year and is famous for hiking, walking, nature tours, and bird viewing. With more than 150,000 acres, Holly Springs National Forest is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. The path’s namesake, Baker’s pond, is the centerpiece of the 1-mile out-and-back trail.
The pond is supplied by artesian springs, but that isn’t the only exciting thing about it. It is also the source of the Wolf River’s headwaters. Despite the pond being at the end of the walk, there are still plenty of sights to see en route.
Holly Springs National Forest’s terrain is covered with colorful foliage reminiscent of the Appalachian Mountains in the fall. You’ll also frequently see purple sand along Baker’s Pond Trail, caused by clay and aquifers beneath the ground’s surface. Overall, Baker’s Pond Trail is a beautiful and straightforward hike with a mostly flat trail.
Dunns Falls Trail Near Enterprise, Mississippi
Are you looking for a fantastic trek that won’t take up much of your time? If that’s the case, you’ll appreciate Dunn’s Falls Trail. It couldn’t be any shorter at only 0.4 miles. The walk isn’t terrific because of the few miles, though. Therefore, the trail’s namesake fall, seen from both above and below, receives this title.
Dunns Falls Path is a moderately trafficked out-and-back trail with a cascade in Enterprise, Mississippi, that is suitable for hikers of all abilities. The path is best utilized from February to October and is generally used for walking, camping, nature visits, and bird viewing.
Dunn’s Falls Trail runs through Enterprise, Mississippi’s Dunn’s Falls Water Park. Dunn’s Falls Water Park, located beside the beautiful Chunky River and features a waterfall, is a terrific site for an outdoor adventure, especially during the summer months.
Trekking around the Dunn’s Falls Trail is a great way to feel the park and all of its attractions. The 0.4-mile out-and-back route starts and finishes at the base of Dunn’s Falls, the park’s eponymous cascade. You don’t want to hurry to the waterfall’s base, though.
Instead, spend some time exploring the region above the waterfall, where you’ll get some great views from a high vantage point. A rustic cottage, pond, and the old grist mill made in 1857 are all on the grounds.
Brooklyn To Fairley Bridge Road On Black Creek Canoe Trail
Here’s an experience for people looking for a considerably longer hike for a well-deserved vacation. Hike one of Mississippi’s longest and most challenging routes to discover the hidden beauty of the Gulf Coastal Plain’s piney woodlands. The Black Creek Hiking Trail follows the Black Creek River for 39 miles.
The path may be accessed from the Black Creek Trailhead, Fairley Bridge Landing, or Big Creek Landing. The route climbs over undulating hills before meandering down into the Black Creek flood plain’s flat plains.
Over a hundred bridges and boardwalks have been built to allow people to cross minor creeks and ponds. The Black Creek Wilderness is home to around ten miles of the path. Because there is no drinking water along the path and only foot travel is permitted, it is advisable to arrive prepared.
Unless the path is closed due to weather, the Black Creek Hiking Trail is open all year, and there are no user fees to pay. However, a trail map is available for purchase at the District Office.
Richardson Creek Trail Near Roxie, Mississippi
Are you looking for a trek with a destination that’s as stunning as the landscape you’ll see along the way? Then a hike along Richardson Creek Trail may be that ultimate experience for you! It’s a lengthy hike at ten miles, but it’s well worth it because the route goes directly to a spring-fed lake that’s ideal for swimming.
You may also drive right to the lake if you don’t want to undertake the long trek. The Richardson Creek Route is a lightly used circle trail with a watercourse. The way is open year-round and provides a variety of activities. Richardson Creek Trail passes through Clear Springs Recreation Area in the Homochitto National Forest near Roxie, MS.
The 10-mile circular path passes through various terrain, making it ideal for both hikers and cyclists. Although the path is rated as moderate, it does demand some effort, and there is plenty of lovely scenery to keep you engaged along the way.
The route is lined with lush vegetation and vibrant wildflowers, allowing fantastic picture-perfect moments. However, the trail’s finish is perhaps the most excellent part because it all comes to a close at Clear Springs Lake. The 12-acre lake is virtually covered by pine woods, making it a true hidden gem.
The CCC Camp Loop Trail Near Dennis, Mississippi
Some days are just begging to be pushed. This beautiful trek in Mississippi isn’t too challenging for novices, but it does provide a fulfilling challenge that will leave you breathless in all the good ways.
The CCC Camp Trail Loop is a moderately used loop trail with a waterfall and a moderate difficulty rating. The path is open all year and is generally utilized for hiking, walking, and wildlife expeditions. The CCC Camp Loop Trail is situated near Dennis in Tishomingo State Park. It’s a slightly challenging climb with some excellent perks.
The route is around 3.6 miles long and circles back to its beginning, so there’s no need to worry about retracing your steps. It is, however, not for the faint of heart. You’ll have to climb steps, negotiate around stones, and avoid cracks because the landscape is rough.
Giant ferns and a meandering river will greet you along the route. Swinging Bridge, which crosses Bear Creek, is one of the trail’s most exciting features. As you cross to the opposite side, expect some shaking underfoot.
Although the bridge isn’t exceptionally high, it may cause some stomach-turning if you’re afraid of heights. The interesting rock formations that border the trail highlight this trek, so bring your camera to capture some of the distinctive rocks and stones to this area.
Red Bluff Near Foxworth, Mississippi
Do you think you’ll have to travel out of state for a memorable canyon hike? Not in Mississippi! Red Bluff, Mississippi’s counterpart of the Grand Canyon, is located in the state. While Red Bluff doesn’t have the same prominence as its famous sibling, it makes up for it in terms of beauty.
Red Bluff is a highly trafficked circle route with a river that is regarded as a moderately complex path to the finish. Therefore, hiking and walking are the most popular activities on the path. Red Bluff is located immediately north of Columbia on Highway 587 near Foxworth.
This colossal canyon is 400 feet above sea level and comprises red clay, dirt, sand, and other materials. It provides some breathtaking vistas as well as an enjoyable and unforgettable trek.
Red Bluff, which was formed by the natural erosion of the Pearl River, will continue to grow in size over time. Surprisingly, the expanding canyon was the cause of Highway 587’s two migrations! “Mississippi’s Little Grand Canyon” has been visited by locals and tourists for years despite being on private land.
Many people go down to the canyon’s bottom to appreciate the breathtaking scenery truly, and you would want to do the same if you had to experience it for yourself!
The fact that Mississippi offers spectacular scenery, lovely hidden waterfalls, its own small grand canyon, and so much more is music to the ears of any outdoor enthusiast. Trails for all ability levels, from a short distance with spectacular vistas to extensive routes with a gratifying conclusion, Mississippi has it all!