Bailey’s Woods National Recreation Trail
Since Oxford’s weather outlook more resembles early spring right now than it does the “official” first day of winter, there most certainly will be a few bonus opportunities for locals to get outside and stay active during 2015.
What better way to spend your quality “off” time than exploring Oxford and Rowan Oaks’ woods that so intrigued William Faulkner and inspired many of his writings?
With that in mind, Hottytoddy.com searched and found the American Trails website – http://www.americantrails.org – which did a great job outlining the local trail’s mystique:
Bailey’s Woods Trail connects the University Museum at the University of Mississippi to Rowan Oak, William Faulkner’s residence in Oxford. The trail was designated as a National Recreation Trail in 2012.
The Bailey’s Woods Trail began its life as part of William Faulkner’s home in Oxford. Faulkner drew inspiration for his writing from the woods, and wrote on the trail. Following his death, Bailey’s Woods Trail is presently under the control of the University of Mississippi Museum and Historic Houses.
The University Museum and Rowan Oak primarily service the University of Mississippi, the Oxford area, the North Mississippi Hill Country, the state of Mississippi and the Southern United States, over 35 thousand visitors from 16 states and Washington, D.C. and 36 countries visited both complexes within the year.
The trail is approximately three-fifths of a mile in length and takes an average of 20 minutes, one-way on foot. The trail is open from dawn to dusk.
The people of Oxford and visitors enjoy using the trail to geocache, walk or run, exercise with their pets and observe the fall foliage. The University Museum currently participates with Michelle Obama’s health initiative, Let’s Move: Museums and Gardens.
Before 2002, the Bailey’s Woods Trail was left to nature’s hands. After the museum and Rowan Oak staff believed improvements were necessary for the preservation of the woods and safety of pedestrians, changes were made. Contractors added four bridges, steps to help with steepness and controlled for erosion. During the improvements, the contractors were careful not to harm the woods or affect its natural beauty.
The Bailey’s Woods Trail is a backcountry pedestrian nature trail. Bicycles and motorized vehicles are not allowed on the trail and it is open from dawn to dusk, with no seasonal closings or visiting fees.
The University of Mississippi Museum and Historic Houses hope you visit to experience great art of the past and present, walk through nature at Bailey’s Woods Trail and write your own story at Rowan Oak.
Directions from the Rowan Oak Entrance: From Mississippi Highway 6 take the Taylor Road exit and head north toward Ole Miss. Take the first right onto Old Taylor Road and follow till the road takes a hard right bend. There, turn left to parking for Rowan Oak and trail. At the end of the parking area is the beginning of the south end of Bailey’s Woods Trail.
Directions from the University Museum Entrance: To access the north end from Mississippi Highway 6 take the Taylor Road exit and head north toward the University. At University Ave, turn right and go to Fifth Street and turn right into the parking lot of the Museum. At the end of the parking lot is the north trail entrance.
For more information, visit the University Museum website at www.museum.olemiss.edu. The address of the museum is 412 University Avenue on the Ole Miss campus. The museum phone number is 662-915-7073.
Jeff McVay is a staff writer and graphic designer for Hottytoddy.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
AmericanTrails.org features every kind of trail activity in the US which are represented in the listing of designated NRTs. Besides hiking and bicycling, the system includes water trails, motorized routes, snow tracks, greenways and equestrian paths. The NRT program showcases the diversity of trails across America, from our cities and suburbs to the deserts, waterways, and high mountains.
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