Sand Gap Trail

Daniel Boone National Forest, Kentucky

Distance6.3mi
Elevation Gain2,198ft
Trailhead Elevation1,277ft
Top1,309ft
Elevation Min/Max832/1309ft
Elevation Start/End1277/1292ft

Sand Gap Trail

Sand Gap Trail is a hiking trail in Powell County, Kentucky. It is within Daniel Boone National Forest. It is 6.3 miles long and begins at 1,277 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 12.8 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,198 feet. The trail ends near the Natural Bridge viewpoint. There is also a shelter near the end of the trail. This trail connects with the following: Balanced Rock Trail and Hood's Branch Trail.

Sand Gap Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Day & Overnight Hikes along Kentucky's Sheltowee Trace National Scenic Trail (Menasha Ridge Press)
Johnny Molloy
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"This loop traverses the quiet side of Natural Bridge State Park. Most of the walk passes through the Kentucky natural preserve adjacent to the park. While others crowd the day-use areas and Natural Bridge, you will have trees and birds for companions, except for a brief pass by the parks namesake rock formation. Circle around the Lower Hood Branch watershed before making Sand Gap and a ridgeline. Views await here in the high country before joining the Sheltowee Trace. Continue toward Natural Bridge, where the loop leaves the Trace to reach Natural Bridge. Enjoy this scenic but busy area before joining the Hoods Branch Trail. Skirt sandstone palisades and then dip into quiet Upper Hoods Branch. Be apprised this is a good wildflower hike in mid-to-late April. Outstanding Features: Natural Bridge, views, and wildflowers."

Sand Gap Trail Trip Reports

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7/14/2009
Not much for scenery, but great for solitude. Once you get to Natural Bridge, and scramble over a few rocks at the beginning, the trail is relatively tame. Take plenty of water and dont hurt yourself, because once you get going you have the whole place to yourself. Not my favorite trail but worth at least one visit.
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5/9/2009
Excellent loop that sees little traffic until you get close to Natural Bridge. The mileage is off, it is closer to 10.5 miles (measured by wheel and two GPS units). I've done this trip a couple of times, the second time heading out to Lover's Leap, then down Needle's Eye, and connecting the Rock Garden Trail back to the parking lot. May not have a lot of views, but the flora along the way, the ridge walking, and the streams make it worthwhile.
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7/19/2006
Great trail! I've never seen so many different mushrooms during a hike. Although it was quite hot and humid the canopy kept us cool up to the Sand Gap. This area had been burned in a fire several years ago and the scars are still there to prove it! Sand Gap and Natural Bridge are both quite impressive and worth the journey. I took my 9 year old son with me and he did quite well, near the end he was tired, but he certainly kept up. Two warnings: One would be hard pressed to finish this trail in the time budgeted by the guide (I'm in great shape and ride a bike some 200 miles per week) and if they did would miss quite a bit of the natural beauty. Two, the guide isn't very clear at the end once you come to the optional loop at the end if you decide not to take it turn right! We wound up taking the optional loop, but not by choice!
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Trail Information

Daniel Boone National Forest
Nearby City
Daniel Boone National Forest
Parks
Sheltowee Trace National Recreation Trail, Daniel Boone National Forest
Local Contacts

Trail Log