Sweetwater Creek State Park Trails

The Red Trail, after half a mile, takes you to the impressive New Manchester mill ruins alongside the white-water rapids of
Sweetwater Creek and is the recommended hike for first-time visitors. New Manchester was a mid-nineteenth century mill town which met its demise during the Civil War A history guide for the Red Trail is available in the Interpretive Center, The second half mile of the Red Trail, downstream of the mill, continues to follow the rapids to the Sweetwater Falls area and is considerably more strenuous because of the very rocky terrain.

The Red Trail is the most frequently used trail in the park because it’s the shortest trail to the mill ruins and best showcases the beauty of the creek valley

The White Trail is a 5 mile loop that passes through some of the most
remote areas of the park. It intersects with the Red Trail at the overlook
of the New Manchester mill ruins at the one mile mark. This trail was
specifically designed to highlight the park’s wildlife and plant communities.
The trail winds through several lovely stream coves and follows the ridges
overlooking Sweetwater Creek. It connects to the end of the Red Trail at
the largest rapid and then continues down a lovely stretch of Sweetwater
Creek. The trail then turns west and follows Jack’s Branch upstream to Jack’s
Lake. After climbing out of the lake valley, the trail passes through the Jack’s
Hill area, a former farming community now known for its open meadows,
which are a favorite of bird watchers.

The Orange rail is a 1.3 mile loop trail which branches off the southern
end of the Yellow Trail. Although it is rated moderate, it does require
walking approximately 1.5 miles and climbing approximately 350 feet in
vertical elevation to reach its beginning. It is known for traversing through
beautiful hardwood forests, with many Chestnut Oaks, and for overlooking
from high above the mile-long stretch of whitewater rapids (up to class IV+)
of Sweetwater Creek.

The Yellow Trail is accessed by starting on the Red Trail at the Interpretive
Center then turning left where the Red Trail meets Sweetwater Creek. It then
heads upstream to the bridge across Sweetwater Creek. After crossing the
bridge, the trail turns downstream where, just past the wooden footbridge,
you will find a fork in the trail. Those wishing for a more gradual ascent up
to the ridge are advised to take the trail to the left (clockwise around the
loop). This trail passes through some of the most beautiful hardwood forests
in the park and has an elevation gain of approximately 350 feet.

The Brown Connector Trail is 1.2 miles-long.
The Green Connector Trail
is 0.72 miles-long.