Hike Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest Loop

Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest - Search Nearby - Added by Alexis Triana

Huge Poplar trees, the sound of a rolling stream, flowers blooming on the trail (seasonal), and some cool history!

The beauty of this trail starts at the parking lot. Before you start the trail, you will find a picnic table near the parking lot and go down to the edge of the rolling stream. Its a great spot to hear the stream and take some pictures. If you are feeling adventurous you can try to hop from rock to rock to stand in the middle of the stream but be careful the rocks are very slippery.

Once you start the trail you will begin a slightly elevated climb, however it is not too strenuous and doesn't last long. You will cross small bridges that cross streams and pass various flowers and beautiful trees. The trail varies and there is lots to see; after the first mile and half you will reach the Kilmer memorial which has a large rock with a plaque commemorating Kilmer. This spot also serves as the only possible picnic spot on the trail. Keep in mind there is no picnic table and you will need to sit on the floor out of the way of other hikers. 

At this point you can turn back down the same path you came, however I recommend you continue down the left side of the trail for the Poplar Cove loop as its the part where you get to see some of the larger more impressive Poplar trees. After the loop you will be Brough back to the same Memorial spot and can continue down the same path you originally came. I hiked this trail with my 2 1/2 year old daughter using a child carrier so it is not too strenuous and can be considered family friendly. Overall I highly recommend this trail as it is likely one of the best in North Carolina and didn't have too many people around so if you like the trail to yourself this is a great spot.  


2 Miles RT




Photography, Hiking

Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Picnic Area

Nearby Lodging

Murphy / Peace Valley KOA

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From $194/night

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We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!


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