Longleaf Trace is a point-to-point trail located near Hattiesburg, Mississippi that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
Longleaf Trace is South Mississippi's premier running, biking, hiking, equestrian trail. It is a beautiful linear park, 41 miles long and fairly flat (a rails-to-trails conversion), extending from Hattiesburg (elevation 220') through Sumrall (290'), Bassfield (460'), and Carson to Prentiss (336'). It has recently been extended to the USM campus, and negotiations are underway to acquire the right of way to downtown Hattiesburg.
From I59 take the Hardy Street exit and go east on Hardy Street to 38th Street (second light). Turn left on 38th Avenue and then right at the next light at 4th Street. The Gateway will be on your left at the foot of the water tower at the northern edge of the USM campus.
From US Highway 49 from Jackson: At Mendenhall turn south on Highway 13. At Prentiss turn west on US Highway 84. The Trace crosses 84 just south of its terminus at the park in Prentiss. Take a side street to the beautiful park (see pictures below) and parking area. For the Hattiesburg terminus see I59 instructions above or the US Highway 49 directions below.
To access the Trace at Sumrall or Epley from Highway 49: Turn west on 42. Turn left on Epley Road (first paved road) to go to Epley, or straight to continue to Sumrall. In Sumrall turn left on 589 and the parking area is a few blocks on your left.
If you are coming from Mobile on US Highway 98 or from the coast on US Highway 49 (they intersect just south of Hattiesburg): Continue (or turn) west on US 98 to I59 north to Hardy Street. Then follow the directions from I59 above.
US Highway 49 Directions: If you are familiar with Hattiesburg and USM, another more scenic way to get to the Gateway Southern Miss is to stay on 49 into Hattiesburg, and then turn west on 4th street (watch for signs directing you to the Gateway. You will get off onto a frontage road that will take you to 4th Street (4th Street passes over US 49). The Gateway will be on your right across from the football stadium. That way you get to see more of the fabulous hub city and USM. To start at Epley or Sumrall, follow the directions above. Going North, Highway 42 will be on your left about 3 miles after you cross under I59.
Friends of the Trace