Off-roading with a Jeep on rugged trails is becoming a wildly popular activity from the Northwest to the Southeast.
States like Alabama, Georgia, and Florida offer excellent routes to take your 4×4 vehicle into nature. Before you head out, you’ll want to know which trails will be the most fun to explore.
Join us as we check out seven places in the Southeast to use your Jeep to its full potential.
Let’s hit it!
Discover Mild to Wild Jeep Trails in the Southeast
Whether you’re new to Jeeping or have been doing it for years, the Southeast has off-roading locations suitable for every experience level. You’ll find everything from easy gravel roads to steep, rocky paths you need to inch across.
Using the AllTrails app and website will help you locate spots appropriate for Off-Highway Vehicles (OHV) such as Jeeps. Reviews from other users describe conditions and skills necessary for navigating the terrain.
And to make your adventures even more fun, you can earn Jeep Badges of Honor by completing specific trails. It’s an app-based program that allows you to check in at locations and rewards you when you finish particular routes.
So whether you want muddy, sandy, rutted, or rocky, you’ll enjoy discovering all the Southeast offers for your Jeeping expeditions.
Pro Tip: Download the Jeep Badge of Honor app to read trail reviews, check-in, and post photos of your experience.
7 Fun Southeast Jeep Trails
Now, we’ll get specific about trails in the Southeast you’ll love exploring in a Jeep. Get ready to start planning some heart-pumping thrill rides!
#1 Tray Mountain Road, Georgia
Near the mountain town of Helen, in the northeast corner of Georgia, is this 16-mile out-and-back trail. While most of the road isn’t too technical, the last three miles will be more tricky. The rougher part includes deep ruts and rocks, so the high clearance of a Jeep or All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) is essential.
A steep valley lines the route most of the way, so you’ll need to use caution as you navigate the path. Once you reach the end, a short hike on foot along the Appalachian Trail is a great way to stretch your legs. Take in the views for a while before making the trek back.
The Tray Mountain Road is an excellent place for Jeeping in the Southeast any time of the year. Rated as a three on a scale of ten, it’s a good one to start with if you’re relatively new to the sport.
#2 Beasley Knob Trail System, Georgia
At the other end of the difficulty scale is this Jeep Badge of Honor trail near Blairsville, Georgia. Consisting of over 13 miles of interconnecting roads, you’ll want to be sure of your driving skills before attempting it.
High grades, muddy sections, and rock hill climbs make this system challenging. One particular road, 93B, isn’t for the faint of heart. Even though it’s less than a mile long, one group of Jeeping enthusiasts spent 12 hours on it. It might be best to avoid that area unless you feel the need to put your vehicle and your nerves through all the paces.
Most other paths you’ll find here will be easier than 93B. Of course, we use the term easy a little loosely when discussing Jeep trails in the Southeast.
In order to drive Beasley Knob, you’ll need to purchase a day pass or an OHV annual permit. Also, note the forest service doesn’t allow nighttime riding, so plan to be off the property by sunset. However, it’s an all-season use area. No matter when you visit, you’ll have a good time.
Do You Know? What Is the Jeep Badge of Honor?
#3 Peters Mill Run, Virginia
Here’s a chance to earn a Jeep Badge of Honor without shredding your last nerve. The difficulty scale on Peters Mill Run ranges from two to three out of ten. So this could be a good Southeast Jeep trail if you’re a newbie to the 4×4 world.
This eight-mile route runs between Woodstock Tower Road at the north end and Edinburg Gap to the south. You can access it from either location.
However, the toughest section is at the southern end of Route 675. So, before heading out, choose whether you want to do the difficult part first or last.
Plan your ride here in spring, summer, or fall. Peters Mill Run closes between late January and the middle of March. A day-use permit is necessary to drive the trail. You can purchase a pass at several gas stations and stores around Edinburg, Virginia.
#4 Flint Creek White Loop, Alabama
In Northwestern Alabama in the Bankhead National Forest, Flint Creek White Loop is a popular Jeep trail in the Southeast. It’s rated as difficult due to deep, muddy pits and rocky terrain. This steep 17-mile route takes most drivers close to four hours to complete.
However, be aware that this isn’t strictly an OHV road. Mountain bikers, hikers, and horseback riders also enjoy using it.
Along the loop, you’ll encounter several areas to take in the gorgeous forest landscape. Don’t cut yourself short by forgetting to stop and appreciate the scenery.
The path is open all year. However, check the weather forecast and trail conditions before you leave home.
Get the Gear: 5 RV Trailers That Can Be Towed With A Jeep
#5 Uwharrie OHV Trail System, North Carolina
Another amazing location in the Southeast for Jeeping is North Carolina’s Uwharrie OHV Trail System. When you want to add water features to your adventures, this spot will fill that desire. In addition to steep, chunky climbs, mud pits, and deep ruts, the 20 miles of interconnecting roads also cross a few shallow streams. It’s always fun to make a splash!
Certain difficult sections of this OHV system will earn you a Jeep Badge of Honor. So check the phone app to see if you want to attempt it.
You’ll need to purchase a day-use or annual pass before arriving, as you won’t find on-site pay stations. But several local vendors sell them, so you can pick one up on your way.
The Uwharrie OHV Trail System is open from April to mid-December every year.
#6 Turkey Bay OHV Area, Kentucky
Now, we head to Kentucky for a true off-roading enthusiast’s dream. You’ll have roughly 100 miles of terrain to explore at the Turkey Bay OHV Area.
No matter your skill level, you’ll find the perfect match here. Bring the whole family because even your kids can get in on the action. The Youth Turkey Trot Trail is specifically for riders 16 years and younger. They’ll learn how to safely climb over small rocks and logs, go up and down hills, and even how to do whoop-dee-doos.
Whether you want a challenging route or one that’s more for a novice rider, just look for the marker indicating difficulty levels. Yellow is relatively easy, orange is a bit more challenging, and blue is the hardest, with very narrow pathways.
Turkey Bay is open all year. In addition, you’ll find several nearby campgrounds to stay in so you can spend the whole weekend Jeeping. Single or multi-day permits or an annual pass are needed to enjoy this OHV area.
#7 Tread Lightly! Four Wheel Drive Way, Florida
Lastly, we head to the Sunshine State for our final Southeast Jeeping recommendation. In fact, the Tread Lightly! Four Wheel Drive Way is Florida’s only Badge of Honor trail. You’ll have 81 miles of Forest Service roads to get your juices flowing.
It’s given a three out of ten difficulty rating, but even experienced drivers will find something to love here. Some sections include mud, water, and soft sand. However, none of it’s overly technical.
And don’t worry about a little “pinstriping” on your Jeep from bushes and trees in the more narrow portions. It all adds to the character of your four-wheeled baby.
Beginning at the north end of the Ocala National Forest, the trail covers a lot of excellent ground in central Florida. Keep your eyes open for wildlife along the route, including black bears and rattlesnakes.
Spring and summer are the best seasons to hit this area. Fortunately, You won’t need permits or passes to enjoy this extensive trail system.
Got kids? Check out Sheep in a Jeep!
Jeep Trails in the Southeast Won’t Disappoint
Jeeping in the Southeast is plentiful and fun. If you’re new to the sport, choose the trails most suitable for beginners.
Just be sure to avoid getting stuck on a rocky road you’re not ready to tackle. Consider doing a little research before you put your ride to the test. After all, you don’t want to find yourself in need of a tow truck. But once you know what you’re doing, go out there and have a blast!
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