Shallow Ford Natural Area
"A part of North Carolina's mountain to sea trail."
1955 Gerringer Mill Road
Burlington, NC 27217
Open 7 Days a week ~ 8:00 am -7:00 pm
Shallow Ford is Alamance’s newest park and first natural area!
Shallow Ford Natural Area is five miles of hiking trails. It connects to the Haw River Trail and the Mountains-to-Sea Trail. Shallow Ford also includes paddle access at the Haw River Paddle Trail. There are also picnic and camping areas.
The longest trail is 3.3 miles, two trails are 2.2 miles, one trail is 1.7 miles and the other is .75 miles. Some trails are more "hidden" while others are right along the Haw River. There are three campsites by the Haw River which have fire pits. The campsites are accessible by canoe or a several mile hike.
The Haw River was a barrier for travelers through Alamance County before the installation of modern bridges. It could only be crossed by a natural crossing known as “The Shallow Ford.” It was an important crossing place for travelers in the 18th and 19th centuries. In 1835, the first bridge across Shallow Ford was built. This natural park is named in the memory of the important crossing and all the travelers who used it.
The trails are considered moderately difficult with around 3.5 miles of trails connecting into loops around fields, creeks and mature forests.
Shallow Ford Natural Area holds special events throughout the year at the park. Camping is $10 for residents and non-residents of Alamance County.
Three popular ones are:
- Fall into Fall! - October 26th, 2013 - Hike the Homestead Trail (2.2 miles) at 8 am with children's crafts at 10 am.
- National Public Lands Day Hike - in September - hikers will be able to explore the trails with a guide
- Nature Craft Workshop - in May - children 3-10 can make a nature collage
Park Rules and Regulations are enforced by the Alamance County Police Department.
The Following Acts are Prohibited:
Possession or Use of Alcohol or Illegal Drugs
Use of Motor Vechicles Outside of Parking Area
Littering or Defacing of County Property
Possession of Firearms
Solicitation of Any Kind
Failure to Have Pets on a Leash
Fishing from Boat Launch Area
Parking Outside of Designated Parking Spots