In the Hanging Rock State Park, the Sauratown Trails offer varying degrees of horseback riding and hiking challenges, in a beautiful, mostly wooded setting. You can see everything from spectacular views overlooking the valley to waterfalls and hidden lakes displaying their pristine beauty. Streams are lined with Rhododendron and Mountain Laurel that show off their delicate pink and white flowers in the spring. Another section of trail might have a quiet pine needle floor with the scent of pine permeating the air.
Two state parks reside at each end of the trail. Pilot Mountain State Park is on the west side of the trail and Hanging Rock State Park is at the eastern most end of the trail. The Sauratown Trail connects the Yadkin River Island and Corridor trails in Pilot Mtn. State Park with the Sauratown Loop trail in Hanging Rock State Park. The total trail distance is 21.7 miles.
There are 5 parking areas at different points along the trail. The main parking area is located on Rock House Road. It has plenty of room for truck and horse trailer parking, a covered picnic shelter and a primitive rest room facility.
The main parking lot is on Rock House Road. This is a gravel parking lot with room to park about 15-20 trucks and trailers. It has a covered picnic shelter with tables, a place to get trail maps, and a primitive bathroom facility (outhouse). Although there is no running water here, there is plenty of water for your horses in the many small streams youll cross along the trail. Some streams are as close as a quarter mile from this parking area.
Directions to the main parking area and picnic shelter:
From US.52, exit at RJR/Moore Springs Rd. (exit #122) Turn left off the exit and go 4.5 miles to Rt.66. Theres a stoplight at this intersection. Turn left at this light on Rt.66 and go 7.5 miles to the second entrance of Taylor Rd. Turn left on Taylor Rd, go a short distance, then turn right on Rockhouse Rd. Go about .3 of a mile and turn left into the parking area at the red gate. (You may have to open the gate when you arrive and close it when you leave)
Overall, Sauratown Loop is the 2nd most popular horse trail of all 18 horseback rides in North Carolina.