Cape Fear River Trail

Between Jordan Soccer Complex and PWC Hoffer Water Plant


River-Trail-MapThe trail is a 10-foot wide paved path for walkers, joggers, bicyclists and others utilizing non-motorized transportation. It winds for nearly 5.3 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.

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.

A trail head named in honor of Moses Mathis was constructed at the start of Phase 2B, located at Clark Park and officially opened in December, 2014. 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 under three miles of the Cape Fear Mountain Bike Trail is now accessible off of the CFRT. Access is located 1 mile north of Clark Park traveling towards Methodist College (not far from the intersection with Eastwood Avenue). It consists of two sections on opposite sides of the trail. The first half mile is more technical with tighter turns and rollers, suitable for experienced riders. After crossing the CFRT it becomes a meandering woodland trail for beginners.

Before You Go

  • The trail is open 365 days a year from 8 am to dusk.
  • Restrooms are located at the Jordan Soccer Complex and at the Clark Park Nature Center during Clark Park’s operating hours. Portalets are also located along the trail.
  • Benches and tables are available toEastCoastGreenway_logo rest and enjoy the solitude.
  • Security call boxes are provided intermittently along the trail for immediate emergency response.
  • The trail is not a loop. It is 5.3 miles long, one-way. Plan your walk so that you will have transportation waiting where you finish.
  • The trail is open for walking, jogging, bicycling and rollerblading and other non-motorized transport.
  • Please respect private property and remain on the trail or within a designated trail area, such as an overlook.
  • Trash should be placed in receptacles provided. Keep the trail beautiful.
  • 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.


PARKING (available at Clark Park)