Rice Creek Trail

Like an intimate paddle? Really intimate?

Town Creek starts up-close-and-personal: the first two miles is a snug paddle betwixt cypress and tupelo and, as Paul Ferguson of “Paddling Eastern North Carolina” fame notes, “many palmetto plants.” He adds: “Some trees require squeezing under and a few require portage, depending on water level.” The trail passes through the Ev-Henwood Nature Preserve early on; there are hiking trails if, during your portage, you decide to stretch your legs.

Suddenly, things change. You encounter small lakes and the creek channel expands to 80 feet in width.

You’ll encounter Rice Creek near the 5-mile mark; do not be deceived by a faux Rice Creek on the right around mile 4.3. If you suddenly find yourself paddling amid big homes on a high bank river left, you have gone too far. Pull a u-turn head a half mile back upstream and catch Rice Creek, now on your right. Continue up another 2 miles or so to the take-out.

You can amend this 6.9-mile trip by taking advantage of the new access at Brunswick Nature Park, on NC 133.

More info: Paul Ferguson’s “Paddling Eastern North Carolina,” Pocosin Press, and here


Getting there from downtown Wilmington
Difficulty: Moderate (length)
Distance: 20 minutes from downtown Wilmington
Time to complete: 2-4 hours
Address: The boonies
City: Wilmington
State: N.C.
Zip: 28410
Latitude: 34.0809
Longitude: 78.0579