Carlisle Nature Trail


5 Reviews

View Trail Map
View Map
Send to App

Register for free!

Register for free with TrailLink today!

We're a non-profit all about helping you enjoy the outdoors
  • View over 40,000 miles of trail maps
  • Share your trail photos
  • Save your own favorite trails
  • Learn about new trails near you
  • Leave reviews for trails
  • Add new and edit existing trails

Carlisle Nature Trail Facts

States: Iowa
Counties: Warren
Length: 3.17 miles
Trail end points: County Line Rd. and Summerset Trail (east of S 5th St.)
Trail surfaces: Concrete
Trail category: Greenway/Non-RT
ID: 10802743

Carlisle Nature Trail Description

Opened in 2016, the Carlisle Nature Trail is a beautiful way to experience the natural beauty of the small Iowa community of Carlisle, located about a dozen miles southeast of Des Moines. Running through gorgeous woodland and prairies in the Scotch Ridge Nature Park, the trail allows you to experience firsthand the ecological history of the area, from the impact of moving glaciers during the last ice age to the thriving plants and wildlife supported by the North River. The paved trail runs north to south through the natural space, offering a pleasant walk or ride with intermittent shade - the trail also conveniently runs right past the local middle school, giving students a great option for walking or biking to school.

In the south, the trail connects to the longer Summerset Trail, a rail-trail that provides a straight shot down to the community of Indianola. Local parks near the trail junction provide even more opportunities for fun and recreation, with a host of athletic fields and play areas. A great little gem of a trail, the Carlisle Nature Trail is a fantastic asset for the charming small town.

Parking and Trail Access

Parking is available at the north end of the trail off of County Line Road, just south of Highway 5. Additional parking is available at the south end in Lindhardt Park, on Lindhardt Park Road off of S 5th Street.

Carlisle Nature Trail Reviews

Wish I knew of it sooner

This trail doesn't show up on Garmin devices or Google Maps. I did a ride through Carlisle a week ago, and would have loved to get through town via a scenic meadow trail rather than fighting traffic on hwy 5. Somebody get this trail onto GPS service providers' maps! I look forward to using the trail next time!

smooth but hilly

We are beginning bikers and older. Loved the wide paved path. Put in north of Carlisle and ride was great as was the view. Then we hit the HILL. Oh my. Benches on the way up and I can see why. We could ride up and took all we had to walk up. We turned around and what a ride down. whheeeee’. Won’t be doing this one sgsin

Great hilly trail. Connects to the Summerset Trail to add additional miles.

Great hilly trail. Connects to the Summerset Trail to add additional miles.

You Can Experience Most of Iowa's Eco-Systems in a 3 mile walk

Best linear park in the world. Starting at the People's Bank trailhead, you
experience restored prairie marshland on your left and restored prairie potholes on your right with riparian woodland in the background. At about 1,500' you cross the North River and ascend a 10% grade with upland woodland on your left and cropland on your right. At the peak of the grade you descend to a 3-acre pond and then ascend via a hairpin trail through an oak savanna. You cross under Scotch Ridge Road and then traverse a conservation subdivision and two city parks before you connect to the Summerset Trail.


hidden gem!

Perfect length, completely paved, great views!

Nearby Trails

Go Unlimited Today!

  • FREE Account
  • View over 40,000 miles of trail maps
  • Post your trail reviews
  • Share your trail photos
  • Save your favorite trails
  • Learn about new trails near you
  • Get a free map in the app!
Register for FREE
Purchase Unlimited

Explore by City

Explore by City

Explore by Activity

Explore by Activity

Log in to your account to:

  • View trail paths on the map
  • Save trails to your account
  • Add trails, edit descriptions
  • Share photos
  • Add reviews

Log in with Google

Log in with Apple


Register for free!

Join TrailLink (a non-profit) to view more than 40,000 miles of trail maps and more!

Register with Google

Register with Apple


Your account has been deleted.