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Hiking in Gaston County

Updated: Sep 20, 2022

Gaston County's trails provide hikers numerous options to get outside and get moving. Whether an easy stroll, a strenuous hike, or maybe even a run, here are some interesting ideas for exploring Gaston County on foot.

Mountain Trails

Mother Nature blessed Gaston County with a pop-up mountain range in the heart of the Carolina Piedmont. This small range is anchored by Crowders Mountain and Kings Pinnacle, the centerpieces of Crowders Mountain State Park. Crowders is an adventure lover’s dream and the park, one of the most popular in the North Carolina State Parks system.

Hike the short but steep trail to the summit of Crowders Mountain to view Charlotte’s modern skyline in the distance, or stretch it out with the 12-mile (round trip) Ridgeline Trail that connects Crowders Mountain to Kings Pinnacle. Softer adventures can be had on several other trails including a trek around the seven-acre lake.

Photo Credit Warlick Family YMCA

Fitness Trails

The Warlick Family YMCA at Robinwood Lake offers a two mile Sytz Trail System. The trailhead for the system is located just off the northeast corner of the parking lot where you will find a large kiosk with a map of the three connecting trail loops. The trails are well-signed along the way, well worn and traveled, and it would be just about impossible to get lost. The trail system is open from dawn to dusk each day and is for walkers and joggers only. No bikes. Furry friends are welcome!

Photo Credit Daniel Stowe Botanical Garder

Garden Trails

Discover 3.2 miles of walking trails around Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden. Persimmon Trail, located off the parking lot, is a short trail that connects with the Carolina Thread Trail. Maintained by the Carolina Lands Conservancy, the trail here meanders along Lake Wylie and connects with Meadowood Walk.

Photo Credit Whitewater Center

Trail Runs

The Whitewater Center maintains over 50 miles of trails for hikers and trail runners. Use of the trail system is available to everyone and does not require purchase of an activity pass but make sure you check the trail status prior to accessing the system.

A Nature Trail for Li'l Hikers

All within a 0.7 mile trek, you'll experience a pine forest, mixed hardwood forest, and pond and stream communities typical of the North Carolina Piedmont. On the Trail for all Seasons, at Schiele Museum of Natural History, every day is a good day for a walk. Play'Scape is a good play area for kids along the trail.

A Trail Connectivity System

Aiding communities all over North and South Carolina with design, The Carolina Thread Trail is a nonprofit that connects people with the outdoors through amazing connected trail systems. Check out their interactive map to learn more about the greenways, and to search for all the thread trail segments in Gaston County.


Explore all the trails in Gaston County

Gaston County is full of natural places to explore. From the shores of the Catawba River—where stoic herons stand in wait for their next meal—to the rugged peaks of Crowders Mountain State Park—where a clear day offers views all the way to the Charlotte skyline and beyond. The opportunities to ditch the city and duck into the woods are numerous.