Land Manager: City of Madison, Land Trust of North Alabama

Native Lands:  ᏣᎳᎫᏪᏘᏱ Tsalaguwetiyi (Cherokee, East), Chikashsha I̠yaakni’ (Chickasaw). S’atsoyaha (Yuchi),  Shawandasse Tula (Shawanwaki/Shawnee) (from

Area Rep: Logan Kennedy,

Located in the City of Madison not far off of Hughes Road, this preserve offers a little over three miles of trail featuring some rocky terrain. Known for its interesting rock formations, “Balance Rock” is a particular favorite. In the winter when the trees are bare, you can see views of Madison below. A large pavilion is available for picnics as well as a playground making this a comfortable starting point for families to explore the outdoors. This property is owned by the City of Madison while the trail system is maintained and managed by Land Trust of North Alabama.” – Land Trust of North Alabama

Rainbow Mountain Preserve Website


Google Maps.

What to Expect

This is a great place for beginners to get into bouldering due to many short, easier problems.  This location makes for a great after-work spot due to its short approach and proximity to Huntsville and Madison. There are roughly 50 boulder problems.

Access notes

  • There are two parking areas available to access the trails. The main parking area and trail entrance is located next to the pavilion. At this location, you’ll find the information kiosk with a trail map and helpful reminders. The second parking area is located just uphill next to the water tower, this is the best access trail for climbing. There is limited parking at the water tower parking, please plan accordingly and try to carpool if you can.


    For everyone’s benefit and safety, please adhere to our simple land use rules so that we may continue providing a positive outdoor experience for all.

    • Trails open dawn to dusk
    • Trails open for hiking, biking
    • No motorized vehicles
    • Please stay on marked trails
    • Please stay off wet trails at least 24 hours after rainfall. Using muddy trails creates ruts, erosion, and other trail maintenance problems.
    • No new trail construction or alterations are allowed without prior permission.
    • Leave no trace. Carry out what you bring in. If you find an interesting plant or artifact, please do not remove it from the property. Instead, take a photo and share it with us (@landtrustnal) or on iNaturalist – a citizen scientist app that can help you identify and document flora and fauna as you observe it in nature. Learn more about iNaturalist.
    • Pets are welcome but must be leashed at all times.
    • The following activities are NOT ALLOWED: Fires • Hunting • Camping • Flying of Drones • Slack Lining • Metal Detecting • Removal of Plants, Minerals, or Artifacts
    • Once trailhead parking is full, the preserve is closed for additional visitors. Do not park on the street or in a non-designated parking spots. If a preserve is at capacity, please consider another visiting another Land Trust nature preserve. Also consider visiting at non-peak times.
    • We do not offer public camping sites.

    Questions or Concerns? Call us at 256-534-5263.


There is no camping at Rainbow Mountain Preserve.


Mountain Project