Parking is roadside, and the start of the trail is up a moderate incline. The trail is well blazed and easy to follow until you are in the upper sections around mile 2.5 to 3, at which point it's still well blazed, but not as well traveled -- leafy.
These trails are used frequently by mountain bikers, less so by hikers, which is a shame, because the hiking here is good. The first/last mile is almost like a banked race track, and you can really pick up some speed on the downhill finish.
Parking is along Blackstrap Road and is free. Trailhead is marked just off the road, so not super easy to see from the road.
This hike starts with a modest incline, which takes you up to the ridge of a hill. There is an overlook near the top, which gives a nice view of Hurricane Valley. Continuing on from the overlook, you travel across the top of this hill and then down a really fun switchback on the other side. This takes you to a low, rocky section of the trail which has boards in places for easier navigation.
You head up again from here, passing the entrances to the white Upper Hemlock
and Lower Hemlock
trails, to the top of another hill where you access the blue trail that is part of the Cross Falmouth Trail. This section of trail is mostly gently-inclined with technical footing. You have the opportunity here to join up with the red Epiphany
Trail, which is a fun trail with some switchbacks, but can be done fairly quickly.
From red, you jump back to blue to pick up the Upper Hemlock
entrance. This trail is fairly technical, but offers several opportunities for berry picking in the summer months. There is an outlet to a road between the upper and lower parts of the white trail, but if you stay on Lower Hemlock
, it will bring you back to blue.
On your way back on blue, take the lower spur, and the front side of the hill you went along on the way out, followed by a fantastic downhill slalom to reward you for that incline start. All in all, a very fun, albeit technical, trail that is very hikeable.
There are blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries, particularly along the white trail. I've seen owls, porcupine, and deer.