The trail is wide and well-maintained, and more than 90% of it is in shade. There is only one street crossing in the entire loop. There are several challenging hills.
Features: Birding — River/Creek — Wildlife
The Al Buehler Trail loop is just under 3 miles, and it's a great trail when taken in either direction. Signposts appear at the 1/4 mile and 1k marks. There are several points where you can start, either from the parking lot near the intersection of Erwin Rd and Cameron, or further east, past the entrance to the Washington Duke country club.
If you take the loop in a clockwise direction (opposite the signposts), you'll cross over a bridge near mile marker 2, and you can take a left at that point to add on the Sally Meyerhoff Fitness Loop
, which is about another 1k to 3/4 mile. There are exercise stations along this loop if you want to test your balance or do some other workouts.
When you return to the Al Buehler Trail, you'll continue over some mild rises until you near mile marker 1.5, where you climb up a bit, going behind one of the golf tees. The drop back down is even more dramatic and then you'll cross over two small bridges in rapid succession before reaching the 1 mile marker. From there, it's a quick jaunt back to the start of the loop, and your vehicle.
The trail is named in honor of Al Beuhler
, the famous track and cross-country coach from Duke, who also served as an Olympic coach.