On day 2 of our Pilot Mountain State Park adventures, we headed to the Ivy Bluffs section of the park to check out the sites along the Yadkin River. The Ivy Bluffs access point is located along the southern part of the Yadkin River in Yadkin County (northern side of river is in Surry County) off Shoals Rd at coordinates 36.25315, -80.50842. This section is about 20 miles from the main mountain but offers some gorgeous views of the Yadkin River.
We arrived early on a cold Saturday morning and had the trail to ourselves. There is a looped parking lot with a helpful map of the river/trail near the trailhead. We started on the 1.3 mile moderate Ivy Bluffs trail, which began on a steady 1/4 mile decline down to the river level. Along the way we saw gorgeous views of the wide, but fast-flowing Yadkin River through the barren trees from the bluffs. The cliffs were high but nowhere as dramatic as the ones around Jomeokee Trail. When the trail flattened out near the river we passed a canoe put-in and large camping area complete with picnic tables and designated camping spots. We continued on the trail, which parallels the river for 1/2 mile and circles back around near the large camping area. Before looping around we stopped near a sandy spot by the water for a short picnic break. After we got going again, we spotted several animal footprints and checked out the rocks and moss along the backside of the looped trail.
This trail is about 1.3 miles in total length and is marked as being moderate. The only moderate part of the hike was heading up the bluffs on the way back. The parts along the river were flat and quiet, the only sounds coming from the river and wee ones. In the future when the kids are much bigger I’d love to explore this area further by canoe and camping!
Thumbs up: gorgeous views of river, great trail for hiking with kids, future canoeing/camping opportunities
Thumbs down: nothing to report