Forney Creek Trail at Sally’s YMCA, Denver,NC

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Forney Creek Trail- Kathryn G. Clark at Sally’s YMCA is a natural surface trail that meanders approximately 1.1 miles along Forney Creek connecting north to the 1.3-mile Catawba Springs Preserve segment in eastern Lincoln County. The trail is located within 85 acres of land preserved by the Catawba Lands Conservancy.

We love this trail so much. I have walked and run every square inch of it many of times and it remains my most favorite trail system in Denver, NC – a western suburb of Charlotte. 

Trail Name: Forney Creek Trail – Part of Carolina Thread Trail

Trail Address: 1601 Forney Creek Rd, Denver, NC 28037

Trail Length: many trails ranging from under 1 mile to 5k

Trail Difficulty: easy with some incline

Surface: dirt path

Fees: none

Parking: park on side of road by trailhead (by locked gate) or at Sally’s YMCA

Restrooms: none at trail but yes at Sally’s YMCA

Pets Permitted: yes, on a leash

ADA Compliant: no

Hours: dawn to dusk

More Info: here

This is a perfect day hike for the Charlotte area. Make sure you check out my other hiking guides and my essential hiking supply guide here!

Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Enter at Optimist Club Rd and Forney Creek Parkway in Denver, NC (taking the Optimist Rd exit off of highway 16 – not business 16)
Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Drive all of the way down Forney Creek Parkway until you reach the locked gate. *update 2021 – this gate is no longer here.Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Park along the side of the road. Sally’s YMCA will be behind you.Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

At the trail head, there is a large rock and map guide.Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread TrailForney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

The path begins on a gravel surface and then quickly leads you to directional markers allowing you to choose which path you would like to take.

Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread TrailForney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Immediately after choosing to go left (down a small hill) you will have 3 more options to choose another path to travel.

*If you choose to go right (where the red sign is pointing) you will be taken to a rope/challenge course that is fun for all ages as well as a swaying bridge!

swaying bridge at Carolina Thread Trail at Sally's YMCA Forney Creek

Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Depending on the trail that you choose, there are various vantage points of the creek that runs through a majority of the property.

Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Once on the trail, there will be more options for more trail extenders. There are also several bridges throughout many of the trails.
Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread TrailForney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

The paths are marked with various emergency marker location signs in case you should need to call for help.Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Bikers are also allowed on the trails.

The trails are full of gorgeous natural life.

Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread TrailForney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Fun Fact: My husband worked for Husqvarna, whose headquarters are in Charlotte, NC and they had a community betterment workday and came to this exact location and cleared brush, made trails and built walking bridges. Cool, huh?Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

There is a pretty overlook, especially when the leaves have fallen.

Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

The trail to the overlook is long and narrow with water surrounding you on both sides.
Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread TrailForney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread TrailForney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread TrailForney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

This trail, Forney Creek Trail is apart of the Carolina Thread trail – a network of trail systems that connect North and South Carolina. Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Near the Carolina Thread Trail sign there is a veer off up a decently steep hill. If you take that, you will exit the trail systems and be at a grassy field where there is a trail leading you to the paved road (which will lead you back to the locked gate…however, you will be on the opposite side of the gate that you parked on).Forney Creek Trail, Carolina Thread Trail

Walk the paved road back to your vehicle!

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