Our local trails are the best part of living in the Charlottesville area. CAMBC is dedicated to preserving those trails, and constantly pushing the number of miles forward. As a chapter of IMBA, we closely follow their guidelines of trail construction and sustainable design. No matter what skill level, there are trails available in our backyard.
Here’s a summary of some local favorites, click for more details including pictures and trails maps:
- OHill. Located right in town near the UVa campus, steep climbs, rocks, and washouts abound. Small and confusing, check out the map! Great for night rides!
- Preddy Creek Park. Located north of town near the airport, fast, flowly trails are great for beginner and kids. Intermediate riders should check out the “expert” loop for a bit more challenge and distance.
- Walnut Creek Park. A long-time favorite of everyone that draws people from Richmond, Roanoke, and DC. Tight, twisty, rooty trails will keep you on your toes, but there’s beginner/intermediate options too.
- Blue Ridge School. 10+ miles of trail with a fun mix of machine-built flow trail and old school rocks and roots. Bring your climbing legs. Park by the climbing tower on the right after you enter, and sign a waiver and check out the map on the trail head.
- Teventrails. This local farm offers 10 miles of very fun, very tight, very fast singletrack. It’s private though, but the Tevendales are very generous with letting the community use their trails. Please respect their generosity by only riding with permission. Watch your email for invitations to ride, they happen often!
- McIntire Park. A few miles with gentle grades. Connect to the RTF across Dairy Rd. or Melbourne Rd to extend your ride.
- Rivanna Trail. The Rivanna Trail (aka the RTF) does a big loop all the way around town, with various spurs that head north as far as Forrest Lakes, and south to Carter’s Mountain and Biscuit Run.
- Carter’s Mountain. Crushed gravel and a boardwalk are perfect for kids and a liesurely cruise, or turn uphill and do some tough singletrack climbing.
- Miller School of Albemarle, This private school has 10-ish miles of very fun, machine-built trail and frequently invite the community to ride. Please respect their property and ride only with explicit permission.
- Biscuit Run. Soon to be a state park, for now it’s officially off limits, but stay tuned.
- Patricia Ann Byrom Forest Preserve Park. (aka Byrom Park) West of town, Byrom Park has some SERIOUSLY beautiful rocks and streams, but bring your good legs, the park is straight uphill, then straight back down. Make sure your brakes work well, and take it easy coming downhill to avoid user conflict.
- Mint Springs. Another beautiful county park near Crozet. Again, some good climbing, so bring those good legs again.
- Pleasant Grove Park. Only 20 miles East of Charlottesville located on Route 53 in Fluvanna County near the High School. This is a multi-use park with 20 plus miles of trails. Be sure to pick up a map at any of the kiosks found throughout the park. The trails are mostly single track with a few old historical farm double track roads leading to, from, and along the Rivanna River. Expect rooty and some Rocky with a few washouts and creek crossings. All ride levels welcome. Horse traffic picks up more on the weekends so please be aware!
- Sherando. (aka Big Levels in some guide books). Camp and spend multiple days, you’ll need it to cover the entire thing. Lots of big climbs and expert trails. About 45min west of town, you can also easily make a day trip out of it to test your lungs on the infamous switchbacks at Sherando. Word to the wise: find an experinced guide, it’s easy to get lost. (Maybe join in on a SERS ride?)
- Whetstone. The king of the expert rides, Whetstone features seriously tough trails. Only for the seasoned uber-expert. Take a experienced guide, as there’s no markings.
- George Washington National Forest. The creme de le creme of biking in Virginia is probably in the GWNF somewhere. Expect long stretches of gravel roads, long climbs, and downhills that’ll teach you the meaning of “permagrin.” Riding ranges from intermediate to super-expert. (The SERS rides will be highlighting the best-of this summer!)
- Douthat State Park. Located almost 2 hours away, you’ll think it’s too far to drive. Until you’ve ridden there. Endless miles of fast, fun, flowy singletrack.
- Pocahontis State Park. This one is also a bit of a trek, but also worth it. South of Richmond there’s probably 45 miles of fun singletrack, and at least as much gravel road. Don’t miss “Little West Virginia” for a double-expert loop, or stick to the beginner loop for a rollercoaster of a ride.
- Buttermilk, Forrest Hills, Belle Isle, etc. Located in downtown Richmond, a series of different trail systems provides for 15 miles of very fun urban single track. An excellent option if C’ville got snow and Richmond didn’t.
- Other Richmond-area trails. These trails also an excellent day trip.
- Gravel roads. The county is filled with back roads you’ve never heard of that are perfect for a quiet pedal through some beautiful country side. North-east of down is the nearly famous Charlottesville Dirt Ride, while west of town includes beautiful loops over Fox Mountain, Clark Road, Dick Woods Road or some serious climbing up Jarman’s Gap and Simmon’s Gap. While you may prefer the singletrack, these options are a great way to get out and enjoy your bike on those days when it’d otherwise be too wet to ride.
And, the list goes on! The locals know other trail that we can’t mention here. Get out and ride!