Sunrise Carriage Trail
ElevationAscent: 206' 63 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 827' 252 m
Low: 621' 189 m
GradeAvg Grade: 6% (3°)
Max Grade: 11% (6°)
“A beautiful, historic trail winding through the woods right next to downtown Charleston.”— Steve Creech
The trail was originally built by Governor William A. MacCorkle in 1905 to transport building materials drawn by oxen to the top of the hill to construct the Governor's Mansion, also known as the Sunrise Mansion. Instead of pulling the materials up the nearby steep Bridge Road, MacCorkle purchased the wooded land to create a gentler grade that would be easier for the oxen pulling the materials. Apparently, while digging the trailbed, MacCorkle himself uncovered a Civil War gravesite of two women who were thought to be spies and executed, though there are conflicting stories as to which side executed and buried the women.
The more than century old stone walls are often patched up with imprints of local leaves set into them. There is also a small shrine on one of the switchbacks that the Governor erected after his daughter was killed in an automobile accident. The trail ends at the top of the hill at the Sunrise Mansion, where MacCorkle began his horse-drawn carriage rides down the trail each morning on his way to the capitol building.
Please take care of this beautiful trail and donated property and strive to leave it in better condition than you found it. It's a deservedly popular trail for runners, so be friendly and say "hi" to the many folks enjoying the trail.
For more detailed information about the history of the Sunrise Carriage Trail, cclick here.
Run this trail?
We need help with the following missing trail information:
Need to Know, Flora & Fauna, Runner Notes
Land Manager: City of Charleston Parks & Recreation