Ben Hawes State Park - TRAIL

Ben Hawes State Park - Trail, Owensboro, Kentucky

Something for all skill levels, from easy open flowing log roads, more difficult double-track to very difficult singletrack. The state maintains approximately 5 miles of logging road and double-track while locals maintain the 5 miles of tight and technical singletrack. This multi-use, stacked loop network is open to hiking and cycling only. ATV and Horseback riding is prohibited. The singletrack is marked with ribbon and way markers. An out-and-back singletrack will direct you to the base of Barry''s Shortcut and Sara Gray''s Loop. From there head back into the woods up Sara Gray''s Loop where the single-track loop begins. This densely wooded loop crosses the main trail in several locations allowing you to explore many different variations.

User Reviews (9)

Showing 1-9 of 9  
Thor   Cross Country Rider [Feb 17, 2013]

Great cross country trail, lots of fast sections with some FAST downhills. You go from pedaling along to 23 mph in about 0.5 seconds. Climbs are pretty easy, nothing too scary.

Customer Service

Counter clockwise is more fun than clockwise, but if you want a workout go clockwise.

Similar Products Used: New Harmony Indiana, Scales Lake in Boonville Indiana, French Lick in Indiana.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
3
Paul Frank   Weekend Warrior [Jan 07, 2013]

The only thing i see that is missing is the location of the cemetery and the cemetery name from ur map and on the home page. thanks. That is why i was their ok

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
jsmith75   Weekend Warrior [Jun 03, 2012]

Fast rolling terrain with very few roots or rocks. There are lots of graded turns to keep the speed on. Very friendly for a first time mountain biking experience. There are beginner and intermediate trails available. The park's website states that the trail was designed with IMBA support. This would make a very good XC race course,

There is a porta-toilet at the trailhead which is the only facilities provided. I am not sure if there was a water source nearby.

Customer Service

The clockwise route is the only one I have tried on the intermediate. There are many connectors to change the routes. (Watch out for the gnome on one of the turns!) The map provided at the trailhead shows color coded trails however the trails are named. I did see some color coding with the signs. I think they should reference the trail names on the maps to eliminate confusion to first time visitors.

Similar Products Used: Grapevine Lake in Madisonville, KY
LBL North/South Trail and Canal Loop
Macedonian Loop at Pennyrile State Forest
Rotary Park Clarksville, TN
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
2
DavidHood   Weekend Warrior [May 15, 2012]

The city of Owensboro Kentucky put up $25,000 to revitalize the Mountain Bike trails at Ben Hawes State park. The grand reopening (after 2009 ice storm) was May the 10th of 2012. Parks and Rec have worked closely with the Kentucky Mountain Biking Association and trail designers since 2010. Now with over 11 miles to explore, this is a great destination. There is truly something for everybody. Take the family on the yellow trail where it is relatively safe and there are no big hills the kids cannot climb. The more adventurous will enjoy the speed and flow of the yellow trail on the way to the blue single track. There are plenty of fire road connectors in case you want to bail but, trust me, you won't. It truly is a great destination. Don't forget your road bike because Owensboro also has 20+ miles of paved (rails-to-trails) greenway connecting it's quaint neighborhoods. I'm a bit bias because I lived there while I was earning my undergraduate degree at Brescia University. I'm in Louisville now and I will have to admit Owensboro caters to cyclists ever bit as much as the big city.

Customer Service

If you have the kids you might want to stick to the Yellow trail. Facing the entrance, go right for a mile or so until you come to spaghetti junction then turn left to circle back to the parking lot for a quick 2+ mile ride.

Similar Products Used: None in Owensboro. I'm in Louisville so I ride Cherokee, Waverly, etc
OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
2
nick leonard   Cross Country Rider [Jan 09, 2011]

Owensboro City Parks has purchased the park from the state. The trails are currently being rebuild and advised by alex steward from spectrum trail design http://www.spectrumtraildesign.com/

Owensboro will have 5-6 miles of purpose built mtb trails in the near future (hopefully mid summer of 2011). Older single track trails have completely disappeared after the icestorm (2009). There still remains 3 or 4 miles of double track if you just need a close off road fix but dont expect anything fantastic right now. just off road thats all. ratings are based on current doubletrack trails.

Similar Products Used: please see my review bellow for other trails in area to ride if you have time to travel outside of owensboro.
OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
2
mhr   Weekend Warrior [May 31, 2010]

In one word... PATHETIC!

Not sure I would ride these trails again even if I was a local within 5 miles of them. Always have to give trail crews proper respect for at least trying though. The double track was rideable and marked, but very poorly and left me guessing at some of the 3 and 4 way intersections. But I couldn't even find one start to any part of the single track sections because they aren't marked or cleared. Bring a map with you, there wasn't any at the trail head except for the info board one. Harmonie SP or Tipsaw Lake are 1000 times better. Maybe if I lived nearby I would see about helping because the place needs a major overhaul.

Similar Products Used: Harmonie State Park, Tipsaw Lake, Macedonia Loops and Canal Loop.
OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
2
Bomber11   Weekend Warrior [Apr 13, 2010]

Some nice double track trails if looking to get a quick local ride in. Someone needs to clear out the single track and this place would be awesome. Was in the area on vacation and was directed here by a local bike shop. Good call guys, rode for over an hour and never on the same trail.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
2
Bomber   Weekend Warrior [Apr 08, 2010]

Nice double track, alot of different loops.Good if you just want to get off the pavement and let loose in the woods.Single track was all grown over, someone needs to clean & clear it out.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
nlleonard   Cross Country Rider [Jan 05, 2010]

trail is still closed from 09 ice storm. there is some double track open but singletrack is work in progress. ratings bellow are based on doubletrack trails. southern in is building some great high quality trail right now. i would recomend french like or new harmoney in a heartbeat.

Similar Products Used: new harmoney in northwest evansville, in (1.5 from owensboro)
french lick casino trails (1.5 from owensboro)
land between the lakes in grand rivers, ky (2hrs away from owensboro)
sal hallow in mammoth cave national park (2hrs away from owensboro)
OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
2
ric_dix   Weekend Warrior [Jul 06, 2006]

Up, down left right. No big ring or shuttle stuff, just good ole classic cross-country. The tight and twisty singletrack is mostly rolling contour trails with some fun little gravity dips and enough small logs and roots to keep it interesting. A unique feature to this trail are the spring wild flowers. The northern end of the park is covered in literally thousands of wild flowers making it a beautiful early spring ride.

Customer Service

From the trail head start off on Boy Scout trail and take the first left. This out-and-back singletrack will lead you to a loop. I believe the loop flows better in the clockwise direction but is more challenging in the counter-clockwise direction. Try one lap in each direction and decide for yourself. Just please be careful to avoid head-ons. It is a network. Therefore, the singletrack crosses the main trail and can be confusing for the first timer. Grab a map from the trail head just incase. Enjoy!

Similar Products Used: Scales Lake, Boonville IN
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Showing 1-9 of 9  

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