Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve Ridge and Valley Loop

Irondale, Alabama

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For me, this was a great discovery: a quick, convenient, and vigorous getaway hike, with great fall color and interesting sights and scenery. It’s challenging in that it gains and loses elevation as it proceeds up and down the draws on the southeast flank of the mountain before climbing to the ridgetop. The ore crusher is a must-see monument to Ruffner Mountain’s mining past. This route also gives you access to the mountaintop quarry and city overlooks that are highlights of any visit to Ruffner Mountain. Very quickly after you start the hike, you’ll find yourself immersed in the forest, though I-20 still produces a background hum. I set out on an early morning. I looked up to see a hawk drop from his roost, gliding away from me, headed to breakfast.

Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve: Ridge & Valley Loop Professional Review and Guide

"For me, this was a great discovery: a quick, convenient, and vigorous getaway hike, with great fall color and interesting sights and scenery. It’s challenging in that it gains and loses elevation as it proceeds up and down the draws on the southeast flank of the mountain before climbing to the ridgetop. The ore crusher is a must-see monument to Ruffner Mountain’s mining past.

This route also gives you access to the mountaintop quarry and city overlooks that are highlights of any visit to Ruffner Mountain. Very quickly after you start the hike, you’ll find yourself immersed in the forest, though I-20 still produces a background hum. I set out on an early morning. I looked up to see a hawk drop from his roost, gliding away from me, headed to breakfast."

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Irondale
Distance: 3.5
Elevation Gain: 800 feet
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Difficult
Duration: 3 hours
Season: Year-round

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Jun 2018