“This is a challenging trail with a deep cave called the Natural Well.”
— Luke Brisk
Cave · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife
Natural Well is one of the more challenging and rewarding trails on Monte Sano. It runs from the Land Trust parking lot off of Monte Sano Blvd and runs to McKay Hollow intersecting with Arrowhead Trail
along the way.
From the parking lot, the trail starts off singletrack and then expands to doubletrack with few rocks and roots to worry about. Then, just before the 1/2-mile mark, you'll come to a huge washout that can be navigated across, but requires you to make your way over downed trees.
As the trail continues on the other side of wash you'll see that this section too has been washed out as well, making it difficult to hike on the original path, but fellow hikers have beaten down the sides of the trail above the wash that is easily navigable.
Around a mile, you reach the 1st intersection with Arrowhead Trail
as you continue a slow climb to the high part of the trail at mile 1.5 where you then start your descent into McKay Hollow. At mile 1.75 you'll reach the trail's namesake, the Natural Well. It is a large vertical shaft cave surrounded by fencing to prevent you from falling in.
After the Natural Well the trail gets much more difficult with very steep rocky declines and some washed out portions. Very technical hiking required here. Just before the second intersection with Natural Well Trail there is a beautiful waterfall that you cross twice.
Eventually, you'll reach the McKay Hollow where the trail opens up into a valley near where Arrowhead Trail
merge into the trail before a small climb to the end of the trail at McKay Hollow.
For more information please read my write up
on Huntsville Outdoors.
Flora & Fauna
Various wildflowers can be seen and plenty of critters including snakes in the summer. Be careful.