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Alabama State Parks

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USA Parks
Southeast Region
Little River State Forest
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(lat:31.2568 lon:-87.4905) map location
Located just 12 miles north of Interstate 65 at Atmore and beneath towering pines, this 960-acre park provides fishing and swimming on a 25-acre lake. Campers can wander the trails or enjoy the water from daylight to dark.
History of the Area
Little River State Forest, located in southern Alabama near the town of Andalusia, has a rich and varied history. The forest, encompassing approximately 2,100 acres, was established in 1931 as a demonstration forest by the Alabama State Lands Division.

Originally called the "Conecuh National Forest," the Little River State Forest was created as part of a nationwide effort to reforest degraded lands and conserve natural resources during the Great Depression. The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), a New Deal program, played an important role in the development and preservation of the forest.

The CCC, operating from 1933 to 1942, employed young men to carry out various projects related to land conservation. In the case of Little River State Forest, the CCC workers built bridges, roads, trails, firebreaks, and recreational facilities within the forest. They also implemented reforestation efforts, planting thousands of trees, including pine, oak, and gum species.

During this period, the CCC constructed several notable structures within the forest, some of which still stand today. These include a stone picnic pavilion, an amphitheater, and the Little River Forestry Museum. The museum showcases the history of the forest, CCC contributions, and provides educational exhibits related to Alabama's forestry industry.

Little River State Forest has also played a role in serving as a training ground for forest management and fire control. The Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries within the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources now manages the forest and uses it for educational purposes.

Visitors to Little River State Forest can appreciate its natural beauty, explore its trails, and learn about its history and importance in the conservation of Alabama's forests. The forest serves as a recreational area for hiking, bird-watching, camping, and picnicking, while also providing habitat for various wildlife species. It continues to be a reminder of the CCC's legacy and the importance of conservation efforts in preserving our natural resources.
1. Little River State Forest Campground: This campground is located within the state forest itself and offers primitive camping options for visitors.

2. Claude D Kelley Recreational Area: Located in close proximity to the Little River State Forest, this recreational area has a variety of campsites available including RV sites with electric hookups as well as tent-only sites.

3. Open Pond Recreation Area: A bit further away but still accessible from the state forest, this recreation area provides both developed and dispersed camping opportunities along with amenities like picnic tables, fire rings/grills etc.

4. Conecuh National Forest Camping Grounds: Although it's not directly inside Little River State Park boundaries, these campgrounds are also an option if you're willing to travel slightly farther out - they offer various types of accommodations ranging from cabins & lodges through standard tents/RV spots too!

5. Blakeley Historic Park: It's just over an hour drive south west offering improved and primitive campsite facilities that include restrooms/showers,picnic areas among others.

6. Magnolia Branch Wildlife Reserve: About 30 minutes north east,it features full hookup RV Sites,cabins,tent site rentals.It also includes bathhouses,picnic pavilions,fishing lakes,hiking trails,bird watching.
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Little River State Forest is located near Atmore, Monroeville

There are several picnicking options available. Visitors can enjoy a picnic at one of the many designated picnic areas throughout the forest. These areas are equipped with picnic tables and grills, providing the perfect setting for a family outing or a gathering with friends. In addition, there are also several scenic spots along the riverside where visitors can spread out a blanket and enjoy a picnic while taking in the beautiful views. Whether you prefer a shaded spot under the trees or a sunny area by the water, Little River State Forest has a variety of options to suit your picnic needs.
1. South Trail: This is a 3-mile loop trail that offers moderate difficulty for hikers, with some steep inclines and declines throughout the route. The path winds through dense forest areas filled with pine trees and hardwoods.

2. North Loop Trail: A slightly longer hike at around 4 miles, this trail features beautiful views of Little River as it meanders along its banks before looping back into the woods.

3. Overlook Trail: As suggested by its name, this short but challenging half mile uphill climb leads to an overlook point offering panoramic views over much of the State Forest area including parts of Little River itself.

4. Wildlife Viewing Area Trails: These are several small trails leading from main paths towards designated wildlife viewing spots where visitors can observe local fauna in their natural habitat without disturbing them too much.

5. Azalea Cascade Boardwalk Pathway: An easy-access boardwalk pathway which takes you directly to Azalea Cascades - one among many waterfalls within park boundaries; perfect for families or those who prefer less strenuous hikes.

6. River Bluff Walkway: Another accessible walkway featuring stunning river vistas alongside towering bluffs - great spot for birdwatching enthusiasts due to high avian activity levels here especially during migration seasons when numerous species pass through region on way south/north depending upon time year etcetera.

7. Campground Connector Paths: Several smaller connector pathways linking various campground sites together allowing campers direct access onto larger hiking network if they wish explore further than immediate vicinity around camping pitch themselves.

8. Picnic Point Track: This track starts near picnic area & heads out across open grassland before entering woodland again eventually reaching Picnic Point overlooking part little river below ideal place lunch break perhaps even quick swim hot summer's day!

9. Equestrian Trails: Little River State Forest also boasts number equestrian-friendly routes suitable horse riders all abilities whether beginner or experienced rider alike.

10. Multi-use Trails: These trails are designed to accommodate a variety of outdoor activities, including hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. They vary in length from 1 mile up to 5 miles.

11. Turkey Creek Trail: This trail is approximately two miles long that follows the Turkey Creek through hardwood bottoms with beautiful views along the way.

12. Butterfly Garden Path: A short but sweet path leading you around an area specifically planted with flowers known for attracting butterflies: great spot nature photography enthusiasts!.

13. Lake Shoreline Walk: An easy stroll alongside lake's edge offering peaceful water vistas throughout year regardless season/weather conditions etcetera.

Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
May 6 truly one of our most favorite parks by Angela J Hurst
park review stars; one to five we have stayed numerous times in the little cabins, Little River is so peaceful it is a great joy being able to relax and soak in the beauty all around the park.
February 6 A favorite place in south Alabama by juli
park review stars; one to five A great place to hike, camp and bird. Love this park. I am so glad it was preserved for the continued use of the public
October 28 Wonderful campground by The Hostetters
park review stars; one to five We stayed one night while traveling and had a great time ... if you are looking for an inexpensive place without all the amenities. Staff very friendly and helpful. Asked if we would like firewood and delivered some to our site at no charge. Gave me an extension cord to use for a few hours at no charge .... very accomodating. They do have new management as the state stopped funding the facility and a non profit took it over and all proceeds go to disabled veterans, terminally ill children, etc. If you want a nice quiet peaceful stay in a beautiful setting ([pine forest and 20 acre lake with some hiking or biking trails) give this a try.
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1. Start by heading south on I:59 if you're coming from Birmingham or north if you're coming from Montgomery.
2. Take exit 205 for AL:68 toward Collinsville/Leesburg.
3. Turn left onto AL:68 E (signs for Leesburg) and continue to follow this road for approximately 9 miles.
4. Next, turn right onto County Rd 273/Grove Oak Road NE and drive for about 5 miles until you reach a T:intersection with US Hwy 11/Sand Mountain Drive N.
5. Make a slight left onto US Hwy 11 S/Sand Mountain Drive N, then take an immediate right back onto Grove Oak Road NE after crossing over Little River Bridge.

At this point, it's important to note that the entrance of Little River State Forest can be accessed via multiple routes depending on your starting location within Alabama:

Option A: If traveling through Fort Payne:
6a. Continue straight on Grove Oak Road NE until reaching another intersection with County Rd/Fort Payne Gault Ave N; make sure not to veer off towards Mentone at any point during this stretch!
7a.Turn left at the stop sign junction while staying on Grove Oak Road NE /County Rd/Fort Payne Gault Ave N.
8a.Continue driving along County Rd/Fort Payne Gault Ave N which will eventually lead directly into Little River Canyon National Preserve where signs should guide visitors further into their desired destination: either DeSoto Falls Recreation Area or Martha's Falls Boardwalk Trailhead.

Option B: If approaching from Scottsboro area:
6b.Take Sand Mountain Parkway/US Highway431 Southbound out of town limits passing under Interstate565 before merging briefly eastwardly alongside TennesseeRiver as partof JohnT.ReidParkway/North Broad Street extension.
7b.Continue on US Highway431 Southbound until reaching intersection with AL:40 West/AL279 North (Main Street) in downtown Guntersville; turn right onto this road and follow it for approximately 12 miles before turning left at signposted junction leading into Little River Canyon National Preserve.

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Alabama State Parks