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Mountain Laurel Loop

 4.2 (13)
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6.3 Miles 10.1 Kilometers


353' 107 m


-365' -111 m



Avg Grade (1°)


Max Grade (6°)

349' 106 m


200' 61 m


Shared By Laura Candler



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A beautiful, shady, singletrack trail that winds through the forest and over wooden bridges at Raven Rock State Park.

Laura Candler

Dogs Leashed

Features -none-

Family Friendly The trail doesn't require technical expertise and it's fairly safe. Most of the trail is easy except for the elevation changes. Not recommended for very young children due to the length and steepness.

Be sure to follow the trail signs for the direction of travel which changes according to the day of the week. Bikes travel clockwise on Saturday, Tuesday, and Thursday, and counterclockwise on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday.


Mountain Laurel Loop is the first of several mountain bike trails planned for Raven Rock State Park. It's a singletrack trail that crosses several wooden bridges, and the entire loop is about 6.5 miles long. The loop passes through forests that include both evergreen and deciduous trees, so it's shady during the spring, summer, and early fall. It's a great trail for beginning mountain bikers who are in good physical shape. The trail is not technically difficult, but the elevation changes and length make it a little more challenging than a trail rated as easy.

Mountain Laurel Loop trail is open to hikers and bikers who are required to travel in opposite directions around the loop. There's a short access trail before the loop begins which allows two-way traffic, and a sign at the beginning of the actual loop shows which direction to walk or ride depending on the day of the week.

The highest elevation is at the beginning of the trail, so no matter which direction you travel, you'll start by riding downhill and finish on an uphill stretch. However, one section of the trail is much steeper than the other so the riding experience is different depending on the direction of travel. When you ride in a clockwise direction, the first third of the trail is mostly downhill with several fairly steep sections. The remaining two thirds of the trail ascend gradually, with a mix of uphill and level sections. When you ride in a counterclockwise direction, the first part of the trail descends gradually allowing you to coast through the first four miles with very little effort. However, the last few miles are almost all uphill which makes that part of the trail strenuous, despite the fact that it's not technically difficult.

Parking for the trail is located in a grassy field away from the main parking area for Raven Rock State Park. To find the trailhead, turn right onto Moccasin Branch Road before you pass through the main entrance to the state park. Drive about 0.25 miles and look for the sign to the mountain bike trailhead. Two portable toilets are located near the beginning of the trail.


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Your Check-Ins


Jan 12, 2019
Jeffrey Wood
Dec 7, 2018
Luis Velez
Nov 3, 2018
Steve W
Nov 2, 2018
Luis Velez
Oct 29, 2018
Lily Wilker
Sep 1, 2018
Luis Velez
3 laps 1:30:19
Aug 26, 2018
Luis Velez
Jul 13, 2018
Luis Velez

Trail Ratings

  4.2 from 13 votes


  4.2 from 13 votes
5 Star
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in North Carolina


90 Views Last Month
1,940 Since Oct 29, 2017
Easy/Intermediate Easy/Intermediate

I really like this trail. Not technical at all but a really nice flow through the beautiful woods. The trail is all hard pack and the only loose stuff is at the beginning of the loop. I think a gravel bike or single speed could do well here. The alternating directions is a good idea. Tsali does this too and it makes the trail a different ride when going opposite direction plus it's safer when approaching hikers. The description is spot on. A good trail to take beginners but they should probably be in shape since it is 6+ miles and has a few short climbs, especially in the summer heat. Awesome to have a new trail to ride in this part of North Carolina. I give it a 5 star for the effort and options put into this trail and the Raven Rock State Park's plans for future MTB trail growth. Nov 8, 2017
Looks like the new trails will be fun, looks like 2 crews cutting and shaping a couple new trails. Can't wait to fly through them. Took a preview of one today that wasn't roped off, ended at a service road until completion. My 11 year old can climb and decent all the trails with ease. Mar 17, 2018
John Fuda
Fayetteville, NC
John Fuda   Fayetteville, NC
This is a beautiful, family-friendly trail. The Mountain Laurels were in full bloom The trail was dry but there were two spots that had some thick mud (almost dry) that were only a few feet across and could be ridden through with no ill effect or avoided altogether. The ticks were out in force; nearly every time we stopped one of us pulled a tick off of our leg. Please bring insect repellent in the warm months!! The climbs and descents are all short, making the ride very easy. There are a few spots where you can make small jumps where the trail mounds over tree roots. The gravel at the base of hills before/after bridge crossings should be taken slowly too, especially if you bike handling skills are not that great (like me). There appears to be a lot of work going on to expand the trail. We saw several new trails that were taped off and even saw some equipment (small tractor with a grading device) on one of these trails ready to get back to work after the weekend. May 7, 2018

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