Distance: 1.0 mile Difficulty: Easy Rating: 4.0/5.0
Conditions: Cloudy to PCloudy. Light breeze. Very hot and quite muggy. Trails/roads were in excellent shape. (Nature trail is paved walkway.) Other trails/roads are asphalt, gravel, and natural.
Gracie and I hiked the paved Nature Trail to the Canoe launch on the Cahaba River. I was surprised at the swarms of mosquitoes that greeted us along the route. If you took time to stop, you would be lunch! Gracie did not seem to mind the flying plague, but I did not like them at all. (Note to self: Bring DEET.) Due to the heat and humidity, I was concerned that Gracie might overheat if we continued hiking the park. We elected to explore the rest of the park via the truck. (So technically this is a Hike/Road Trip.)
Old Cahawba is well maintained. Roads of asphalt, gravel, and natural surface make travel through the ghost town easy. Prominent ruins are located on the map and with signage. We observed one active archaeological dig near the site of the old capital.
Canoe launch on the Cahaba is easily reached via the paved trail. I did not observe a launch area on the Alabama River. Adequate picnic tables and restroom facilities make this park a little-known gem. I highly recommend visiting in Fall or Winter if you intend to spend time in the forest or rivers.