Open daylight hours year-round. Parking lots have gated hours that shift with the season.
With multiple entry and exit points along the paved road and at the two major parking areas, this is an easy and beautiful trail of mostly well-packed, smooth, and usually dry terrain. On the north side near the dunes, there are a few spots of soft sand that will slow you down.
Views of the beaches and ocean are beautiful on the south side of the loop from the crest of the dunes. You'll run in a loop around historical Ft. Macon and beside the Coast Guard Station looking out on the Beaufort Inlet and the Atlantic Ocean.
On the north side, there are views to the wetlands with numerous wide boardwalks across tidal floods that wind through the tree canopy. Multiple laps of this 3.2-mile loop make for even more of a workout and reversing the route increases the fun.