Though Walnut Creek has become a popular destination for mountain biking
, it's a great spot just outside of town to bring the dog or friends from out of town to go for a lakeside hike through the hills and surrounding forests.
This loop hike primarily uses Wilkin's Way
along with the C'ville Bike & Tri Just Climb It
trail from the main lot.
As all trails at Walnut Creek Park can be traveled in either direction, this hike can be done in reverse or adapted for time and/or groups of varying abilities.
Entry fee: $3/adult county resident, $2/child (4-12) county resident; $4.50/non-county resident, $3/non-county child. Be aware of the Disc Golf area on either side of the parking lot, in addition to mountain bikers, especially along tighter sections of trail where line of sight can be limited.
From the main parking lot at the end of Walnut Creek Park Road, carefully head north through the Disc Golf course on Entrance/Jingle Trail
. Leaving the course, continue past the northern parking lot and cross Walnut Branch to find Luke's Loop
. Turn left to follow the lakeshore to the south and continue onto Wilkin's Way
, staying to the left. Follow the contours to the southernmost point of the loop and lake, which also marks the start of a moderate, sustained climb. Keep an eye and ear out for descending mountain bikers along this pitched section of trail.
Head up the northern slope of Ammonett Mountain for a mile and close to 200' in elevation before bending to the north and continuing to dip and wind along the trail. Near the 3.25-mile mark, look for the old homesite remains.
A quarter-mile further, continue to the left at the intersections with the Chimney Trail East
and Chimney Trail West
, descending toward the Bike Factory Trail
. (To shorten the hike, stay on Wilkin's Way
to Luke's Loop
and retrace the beginning of the hike back to the car.)
To continue on this route, head to the northern boundary of the park on the Bike Factory Trail
before looping back across the park road on winding singletrack that heads to the main parking lot with a brief connection along the road.