Triangle Area Greenways – If you’re an avid walker, runner, or cyclist looking for quick access to scenic greenways and trails, then the Triangle is a fantastic place to live!
With hundreds of miles of greenways through scenic natural areas and thriving urban centers alike, the Triangle offers countless opportunities to get outdoors and enjoy a beautiful day. Whether you’re new to the area and looking for trails to explore or you’re a long-time resident interested in exploring new-to-you Triangle area greenways, check out my guide to the best of the best-paved trails in the region!
Over 11 miles of public greenway is currently maintained by the Town of Apex, with more mileage planned as future development occurs. Beaver Creek Greenway runs 2.16 miles along its namesake creek and connects Apex Jaycee Park to Kelly Road Park. An additional 1.26 miles of trail, connecting Kelly Road Park to Apex Nature Park, is planned for development in 2020. Apex Nature Park boasts 1.5 miles of paved greenway with an additional 2 miles of natural trails. Apex Community Park offers 2 miles of paved greenway around scenic Lake Pine as well as 2 additional miles of natural trails.
The town also maintains a number of small neighborhood parks and short greenways that are open to the public. Apex is also home to the south end of the American Tobacco Trail, a 22+ mile rails-to-trails project that spans from Apex to Durham.
The Town of Cary boasts one of the most extensive greenway systems in the Triangle. The town’s longest greenway is Black Creek Greenway, which runs 7.1 miles from Bond Park to the outskirts of Umstead State Park. Also accessible from Bond Park is White Oak Creek Greenway, which runs 4.7 miles west through White Oak Park to connect with the American Tobacco Trail in Apex. Crabtree Creek Greenway runs 1.7 miles along the south shore of Lake Crabtree and continues an additional 1.4 miles through Morrisville. Future development will farther lengthen the Crabtree Creek Greenway, expanding it south to Bond Park. For a complete list of Cary’s 50+ miles of greenways, click here.
The Town of Holly Springs has an extensive sidewalk and greenway system weaving through the fabric of the town. Starting at Sunset Lake Road, a connective path of boardwalk, asphalt, and natural trails, plus connecting sidewalks, weaves its way through numerous communities and multiple parks, including Veterans Park, Jones Park, Womble Park, Sugg Farm Park, and Bass Lake Park. For a complete map of Holly Springs’ greenway system, click here.
The Town of Morrisville has a number of greenways, three of which are just a short distance from Town Hall. The Indian Creek Greenway and Trailhead feature open space, shelters, playground, and arboretum at the head of the 1.8-mile trail. Hatcher Creek Greenway spans 1.4 miles from Davis Drive to Town Hall drive, passing through Morrisville Community Park along the way. An underpass is planned for construction in 2020 that will connect Hatcher Creek to Crabtree Creek Greenway, which runs 1.4 miles to connect to the Cary section of the greenway which continues to Umstead Park.
It is no surprise that the capital city has an extensive network of greenway trails. Greenways ranging from under a mile all the way up to 27.5 miles offer Raleigh residents and visitors alike a safe way to walk or bike the city. Many of the city’s greenways connect to one another, offering extensive miles of exploration. The Walnut Creek Greenway starts at Lake Johnson and runs 15.6 miles east through NC State’s Centennial Campus, skirting the southern edges of Downtown Raleigh, and ending at the Neuse River. There, it connects to the Neuse River Greenway, Raleigh’s longest at 27.5 miles. It runs from the Falls Lake Dam south to the Wake/Johnston County lines, where it continues an additional 5.5 miles into Clayton. The Reedy Creek Greenway is a scenic 5-mile trail that runs from Umstead Park down through the North Carolina Museum of Art and Meredith College campuses.
Raleigh’s Crabtree Creek Greenway (a separate trail from Cary’s greenway of the same name), runs 14.6 from Anderson Point Park at the Neuse River northwest through the city’s urban fabric, passing WakeMed Raleigh and Crabtree Valley Mall before terminating in the Oak Park residential area. The 2.8 mile House Creek Greenway and 4.1 mile Mine Creek Greenway can be accessed from the Crabtree Creek Trail. For a complete list of Raleigh’s over 100 miles of greenway, click here.
Durham’s over 30 miles of greenways are broken into 4 greenway systems which are further divided into shorter trails. Some of these trails are off-road greenways while others are wide sidewalks along roads, creating a fun and safe way for pedestrians and cyclists to experience the urban fabric of Durham. The New Hope Creek Greenway is the shortest of the 4, offering 0.75 miles of paved trail along Sandy Creek, a hot spot for nature sightings. Beavers, deer, otters, coyotes, red foxes, turtles, and over 100 species of birds have been sighted in the area.
The North/South Greenway consists of 9 trails totaling 12.6 miles. It connects numerous parks and cultural sites and includes creek-side trails as well as trails through the center of Downtown Durham, giving users access to both the city and nature. The Pearsontown-Rocky Creek Greenway consists of 3.4 miles of paved, off-road trails connecting Elmira Park and the ATT. The American Tobacco Trail runs from Durham County south through Chatham and Wake Counties. 11 of the trail’s 22+ miles are in Durham, starting at the intersection of Morehead and Blackwell in Downtown then passing by Southpoint Mall before crossing into Chatham County. For more information about Durham’s greenway system, click here.
The Town of Chapel Hill maintains approximately 17.6 miles of urban greenways and trails, including a mix of paved and natural trail surfaces. The Fan Branch Trail is a 1.62-mile greenway that includes an ExoFit Fitness Circuit for folks who enjoy working out in the great outdoors. Fan Branch also connects with Morgan Creek Trail, a 0.85-mile path that includes a boardwalk section through scenic woodlands. Bolin Creek Trail and Lower Booker Creek Trail are both paved greenways running through a meadow and wooded floodplain environments and span 1.5 and 0.8 miles respectively. For a complete list of Chapel Hills greenways and trails, click here.
Hillsborough’s most well-known greenway is the Riverwalk, a 1.8-mile urban greenway that runs along the Eno River. Popular amongst locals and tourists alike, the popular trail provides easy access to Downtown Hillsborough. The Riverwalk terminates at Gold Park in the West and the Occoneechee Speedway in the East. The Historic Occoneechee Speedway is a 44-acre site that is on the National Register of Historic Places. The site offers 4 miles of natural surface trails including the only surviving dirt speedway from NASCAR’s inaugural 1949 season. Park also includes scenic views of the Eno River.
Thinking about moving to the Triangle and want to ensure you have easy access to the area’s many local Triangle area greenways? Already a Triangle resident but want to move closer to outdoor recreation areas? Give me a call! I can help you find your dream home close to your favorite Triangle area greenways, parks, and trails. Contact Amy for your Shair of the market!