Living in the beautiful Charlotte area means you and your pup get to spend lots of time outdoors. As the temperatures begin to climb this spring, it’s a great time of year to explore the local scenery. Get out, get active, and get your dog’s tail wagging with Charlotte’s best dog-friendly trails!
Blaze a Trail at Reedy Creek Nature Center and Preserve
Explore new frontiers with over 10 miles of fields, streams, creeks, and meadows at Reedy Creek Nature Center and Preserve. If your pup is tired of the same old dog day hikes, this scenic route is for you! A looping series of trails is the perfect choose-your-own-adventure for you and your best friend. Routes range from easy to moderate, with varying terrain and a bike path for cycling pups.
Great fishing access provides a place to chill in the summer, while fall foliage highlights Reedy Creek’s many bird watching spots as temperatures cool. What makes this trail pawsitively unique? The most well-trafficked route leads hikers along the ruins of the historic Robinson Rockhouse, built in 1970. Enjoy a taste of history and be sure to keep dogs on leashes at all times.
Conquer Crowder’s Mountain State Park
Just half an hour outside of Charlotte, Crowder’s Mountain State Park offers scenic lake views, towering cliffs, and 11 trails that range from beginner to mountain warrior. The Ridgeline Trail is the most popular route for hikes into King’s Mountain State Park. Hiking portions of The Ridgeline can be a great day hike or — if your furbaby loves to camp — take on the whole trail. If preparing to hike the backcountry, make sure your dog is up to date on his or her vaccines, know your pup’s stamina, and go prepared with plenty of water to keep you both happy and hydrated.
If you and your dog aren’t quite ready to be mountaineers, relaxing at the lake or hiking any of Crowder’s meadow trails offers the same spectacular views with less leg work. Two of the best dog-friendly trails for the Crowder area include Tower Trail and Pinnacle Trail. Determined hikers will be rewarded with breathtaking views and tired pups!
Experience History at Latta Plantation
Latta Plantation is one of the most unique, pet-friendly hikes in the Charlotte area. This historic cotton plantation dates back to the early 1800s. The Latta Nature Preserve hosts myriad trails that offer views of the living history farm, historic outbuildings, and the plantation itself. You and your best furry friend may feel like you’ve stepped into a time capsule with this glimpse of North Carolina’s past! The Cattail and Beechwood Trails are especially nice in the summertime.
Latta Nature Preserve is also a favorite spot for viewing wildlife. If you’re looking to mix up your daily walk, try a little amateur wildlife photography with your pup. Just make sure your best friend doesn’t chase off your squirrely subjects!
Stroll Along South Fork Trail
This trail is a stand-alone hike, unlike the parks we’ve toured so far. An easy, level, 2-mile walk each way provides a quick afternoon break for you and your dog. Surprisingly, this trail is not heavily trafficked. A hidden gem, South Fork is the perfect jogging route all year round.
The highlight of South Fork? Check out the ruins of a Civil War Era bridge and surrounding mills!
Fetch at McDowell Nature Preserve
One of the most well-loved parks for dog owners, McDowell is centrally located and offers over 7 miles of trails to explore. This is a good park for families, picnickers, and anyone looking to relax after a long week. It’s also a great spot for small dogs, with trails and open prairie areas that are sure to provide fun for all sizes and energy levels. The preserve offers easy access to fishing, hiking, kayaking, and more!
Love hiking, but not always able to keep up with your dog’s busy schedule? Take the adventures and leave the daily walks to Little Friends’ compassionate, knowledgeable staff. We’re never off duty, with year-round dog walking and pet sitting services, flexible scheduling, and comprehensive wellness-based programs for our furry clients and the people who love them! Book your first walk today and check out more ways to stay active and healthy alongside your pup.