Alabama Hikes: Fanning Trail

Fanning Trail

Fanning Trail in the Belvins Gap Nature Preserve is a mild and beautiful hike for seeing the crisp fall colors.

Hiking Fanning Trail

Belvins Gap Nature Preserve was the first piece of property donated to the Land Trust of North Alabama. Fanning Trail is named for the first land donor.

The official trail head for Fanning Trail begins behind the Southeast Huntsville Church of the Nazarene, but my family and I started by using the Walsingham Connector trail off of Walsingham Road, and that walk uphill through the neighborhood is much tougher than any part of the actual hike.

The hard part over with, the trail climbs in elevation a little before leveling off. The trail passes through a small cropping of rocks that’s reminiscent of Rock City in Chattanooga. The trail then crosses over a creek and a few spring-like trickles of water. There are a few downed trees that cross the trail, and the path can be easy to lose at places, so it’s a good idea to keep a map handy and keep an eye out for the trail markers on the tree, which for some reason the squirrels or other critters like to chew away at.

Fanning Trail

Mom and Dad used their new Black Diamond walking poles, which I also took advantage of at some points too to help me hop over some muddy spots. They’d considered buying these more expensive distance hiking poles that are lightweight and fold up, which is pretty nifty, but they ultimately decided that they didn’t need anything super fancy for the type of casual hiking they do.

We turned back after about one mile on the trail because Dad had a Georgia Tech game to get back to. But the hike continues on, completing at about 2 miles from the official trail head to the end, which is marked all the way to Cecil Ashburn Drive across the street from the Land Trust Parking lot for the other section of Belvins Gap trails.



What’s your favorite hike in Huntsville? Let me know in the comments!

(Note: This post contains affiliate links.)


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