Tuesday ยท July 11, 2023
De Soto National Forest: Top Horse Trails | July 2023
Author: Admin

Exploring the Great Outdoors: The Top Horse Trails in De Soto National Forest


Nestled in the heart of southern Mississippi, the De Soto National Forest is a true paradise for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. With its vast expanse of stunning landscapes, abundant wildlife, and diverse ecosystems, this national forest offers a wealth of recreational opportunities. Among these activities, horseback riding is a popular choice for those seeking a unique and intimate connection with nature. If you're a horse enthusiast, let's take a ride through the top horse trails in De Soto National Forest.


1. Black Creek Multi-Use Trail: This 41-mile-long trail is a dream come true for horseback riders. Following the banks of the serene Black Creek, this trail will take you through towering pine forests, peaceful wetlands, and plush bottomlands. With numerous access points and designated campsites, you can embark on short day trips or turn it into an immersive multi-day adventure. Keep an eye out for bald eagles, white-tailed deer, and other wildlife that call this area home.


2. Longleaf Horse Trail: Set in the eastern section of De Soto National Forest, the Longleaf Horse Trail offers 27 miles of picturesque riding. As its name suggests, you'll be surrounded by the grandeur of longleaf pine trees, which dominate the landscape. The trail meanders through rolling hills, open fields, and enchanting hardwood forests. Sharing the trail with hikers and bikers, be sure to practice trail etiquette and take in the beautiful scenery along the way.


3. Leaf River Horse Trail: If you're looking for a shorter ride or a perfect spot to introduce your equine companion to the joys of trail riding, the Leaf River Horse Trail is an ideal choice. Covering only 8 miles, this trail winds along the picturesque banks of the Leaf River. With ample opportunities for water crossings and shaded paths, it's a refreshing escape on a warm day. Don't forget your camera, as the scenic views along the river are simply breathtaking.


4. Bethel Horse Trail: Known for its natural beauty and tranquility, the Bethel Horse Trail attracts riders of varying skill levels. Boasting 12 miles of well-marked paths, this trail offers a mix of pine forests, sandy bottoms, and grassy meadows. Enjoy the peacefulness of the picturesque landscape as you ride past vibrant wildflowers and moss-draped trees. Be sure to check the trail conditions, as some sections can become muddy after rainfall.


5. Big Biloxi Horse Trail: Located in the northern part of De Soto National Forest, the Big Biloxi Horse Trail is an excellent destination for riders seeking a challenging journey. This 18-mile trail takes you through a diverse terrain of hardwood bottoms, upland pine forests, and cypress swamps, offering a true immersion in the beauty of Mississippi's wilderness. Savor the sounds of nature as you navigate rolling hills and river crossings amidst this remarkable landscape.


Before heading out on the trails, it's important to ensure you are well-prepared. Carry essential supplies such as water, snacks, a first aid kit, a map or GPS device, and proper safety gear. Additionally, familiarize yourself with any trail rules and regulations, including seasonal closures or permit requirements.


When visiting De Soto National Forest, remember to practice Leave No Trace principles by packing out what you pack in, respecting wildlife and their habitats, and staying on designated trails. And of course, always consider the well-being and safety of your horse during your ride.


Embark on an unforgettable equestrian adventure amidst the beautiful scenery and abundant wildlife of De Soto National Forest. Whether you're planning a day ride or an extended exploration, these top horse trails offer something for everyone. So saddle up, hold the reins, and get ready to create memories that will last a lifetime.