A nearly step-by-step hiking guide for the Raleigh-to-Clayton section of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail (MST) was recently released by the Friends of the MST on its website, ncmst.org.
The guide covers a 33-mile section of the trail that incorporates the Neuse River Greenway in Wake County, and Clayton River Walk and Sam’s Branch Creek Greenway in Johnston County.
“This section will be the gateway to the MST in Eastern North Carolina,” said Kate Dixon, the Friends’ executive director. “Because of its proximity to Raleigh this is also likely to be the most popular section of the entire 1,000-mile MST.”
Starting just below the Neuse Dam, the guide details the trail nearly every 10th of a mile. The details include places to get something to eat, bathrooms and nearly 20 places to park to access the trail. There are descriptions of historical sites, natural features and an alternative route for a two-mile gap in the trail near the WRAL soccer fields.
“Raleigh, Wake County and Clayton have combined to create a showcase trail that delivers a strong message to business and individual visitors about how much the area values quality of life,” said Dixon. “We’re proud that it is part of what we’re working to accomplish.”
Dixon said guides have also been completed for the Blue Ridge Parkway area and another section that links the Triad and Triangle.
The MST route goes from the Great Smoky Mountains to the Outer Banks. More than 600 miles are completed.