Cape Fear River Trail

631 Sherman Drive, Fayetteville NC 28301

Whether you’re looking to bike, walk, or even scoot, the Cape Fear River Trail is an excellent place for that. This trail is a 10-foot wide paved path that extends for 5.3 - 7.0 miles.

Shrouded with trees, wildlife, and even a covered bridge, we think this will be one of your favorite things to do with kids in Fayetteville.

Pro-tip: Start at Clark Park (see below) and enjoy the Nature Center first!

Cape Fear River Trail

The CFRT is a 10-foot wide paved path for walkers, joggers, bicyclists and others utilizing non-motorized transportation. It winds for over 7 miles, one-way, through a beautiful blend of trees, plants and wildlife with spectacular views of the river. The terrain can be flat or slightly hilly. In addition to the wooden bridges, including one covered bridge, there is over 1,000 feet of boardwalk through the marsh and wetlands along the trail. A short connector links the Linear Park Trail with the newest section of the Cape Fear River Trail near Riverside Dog Park (limited parking is available at the dog park). Along the trail are interpretive signs explaining the wildlife and plant life found in the area. There are more than 700 species of plants and trees, and 150 species of birds. The river trail area is also home to an unusual combination and diversity of hardwood trees. Frogs, lizards and turtles are common sights, with an occasional deer, turkey or bald eagle. A trail head named in honor of Moses Mathis, is centrally located on the trail at Clark Park. The trail is designated as part of the East Coast Greenway. The Greenway is a series of urban trails and greenways that will eventually connect from Calais, Maine to Key West, Florida, similar to the Appalachian Trail. Just over 11 miles of the Cape Fear Mountain Bike Trail is accessible off of the CFRT. Access is located 1 mile north of Clark Park traveling towards Methodist University, not far from the intersection with Eastwood Avenue. Additional details on the Cape Fear Mountain Bike Trail are provided in the next column.

Before You Go:

  • The trail is open 365 days a year from 8 am to dusk.
  • Parking is available at Jordan Soccer Complex and Clark Park.
  • A short connector links the Linear Park Trail with the CFRT near Riverside Dog Park (limited parking available).
  • Bring plenty of water.
  • The trail is not a loop. It is 7 miles long, one-way. Plan to have transportation waiting where you finish.
  • Pets must be leashed. Owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pets.
  • Some sections of the trail are steep and therefore hazardous. Bicyclists are to maintain speeds under 15 mph and yield to pedestrians. Carefully control your bike on slopes.