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The River Ridge Loop Trail begins on SR 1304 across from the Murray Branch Recreation Area. The trail winds up through a drainage to an intersection of an old logging road. It follows this road and forks to the right approximately 175 feet from the intersection. It then climbs gradually through a pine forest onto the top of the ridge facing the French Broad River. The trail parallels the crest of the ridge with views of the river to a switchback and intersects with the old logging road and Jack Branch Trail on the back side of the ridge. Turn left and follow the old logging road back to the beginning of the trail. Jack Branch Trail continues to the right at the intersection. Picnicking, fishing and pit toilets are available at Murray Branch Recreation Area.

Directions: From Hot Springs, NC, Travel east on US 25 / 70 across the French Broad River bridge. Immediately after crossing the bridge, turn left onto SR 1304. Turn right at the first intersection and continue on SR 1304 for 5 miles to the Murray Branch Recreation Area.

Elevation Gain: 200 feet

Distance: 1.3 miles

Difficulty: Strenuous

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Pisgah National Forest, North Carolina

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The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

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