Caroline Dormon Trail
Featured in the book "50 Hikes in Louisiana", this trail is a great opportunity for anyone interested in backpacking in our state. This 10.5 mile one way trail is great for a weekend getaway or can be connected with the Backbone trail and/or the Sandstone multi-use trail for a 6-7 day true backpacking experience. The Kisatchie NF is my personal favorite place to hike and camp in Louisiana!
The best time of the year to hike is Fall through Spring, as the temperatures are more suitable for humans and best of all, NO bugs! The trail begins off the Longleaf Scenic Byway directly across from the Backbone Trailhead.
There is a large parking lot and an information kiosk at the trailhead. There are several water sources from creeks and bayous that are fairly reliable except in some drought years, so water shouldn't be a concern. You follow and cross Steep Branch for the first few miles, with the sandstone bottom creating small water features that are nice.
Soon after the first crossing of FR 360 , Steep Branch merges with Bayou L'ivronge and will stay on your right until you come to FR 360 again around mile 5. Walk across the bridge here and the trail soon reappears to your right.
The second half of the trail is where you have the most elevation gain and loss, giving you the best scenery. At one point you can see a hill in the distance that you will go over further down the trail. This up and down continues until you reach the western terminus at Kistachie Bayou Recreation Area, where there are some nice campsites on bayou.