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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm from NY, my wife and kids will be out of town and I have to be in Washington DC for work on Sunday July 7th. I am planning on leaving on the 3rd and heading into the hills for a few days before heading up to DC for 4 days locked in a hotel conference center.

Looking for the best riding experience for the long weekend, am open to both enduroy self shuttle able runs, but also wouldn't mind a 20-30 mile epic ride on one of they days.

I've been to the Frederick Watershed and Carvins Cove in Roanoke, I'm not against revisiting either, but also like to ride new things. I am also fine with doubling up and riding one spot in the morning and another int he afternoon when I can...

So whatcha got?
 

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Camp at Stokesville and ride the trails in the area, be sure and ride Reddish Knob-east of Harrisonburg VA.

In the DC area, ride, Fountainhead, Wakefield/Accotink and Meadowood.

You can find them all easily on MTB Project.
 

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Super tough to pick a 'best' for VA and WV, but I'd probably agree with Stokesville for the sweet campground and great trails you can ride right from there. A 20-30 mile loop would give you a lot of options down there. You could also do a day at Massanutten's Western Slope, or even Massanutten or Bryce Bike Park while you're down there.

Another really good option is Michaux State Forest in PA, but it's pretty tough to navigate. Purple Lizard just produced a map for it that is supposed to be very good.

If you like rocks then maybe check out Elizabeth Furnace near Front Royal, the tops of the ridges are the ridiculously rocky, tough riding. That's only 1.5 hour or so from DC too.
 

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WillWorkForTrail
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Camp at Stokesville and ride the trails in the area, be sure and ride Reddish Knob-east of Harrisonburg VA.
That's all the info you need. If you do Reddish and manage to find a shuttle, you could do deathstar as well. Near the camp, for sure hit up lookout, make a loop on narrowback out of tilman and festival. There's riding for days up there. And all of it's good.
 

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yelgatgab
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I wouldn't hesitate to call the riding around Stokesville the best within reasonable driving distance from DC, and possibly VA.

MTB Project and Trailforks have most of the major stuff. The above suggestions are good, and I'd also throw in Braley Pond and Dowells. Just an FYI, if you're planning to do Narrowback, Tillman West, Reddish/Wolf, Tillman road is closed at Hearthstone lake, though is typically passable by bike on weekends and when they're not working.
 

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Sherando or Western Slope? I'm here visiting and I'm at my buddy's house which is about halfway between Western Slope and Sherando Rec area. Weather is beautiful and I'm about to head out, but I can't decide which direction to go. I haven't ridden either. Thanks for any feedback!
 

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yelgatgab
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Halfway between the two could potentially put GWNF in play. If so, that would be my choice (Braley and/or Dowells). Otherwise, I'm partial to Sherando. Western Slope has more variety, but Sherando is more backcountry, has more potential vert, and the Torry/Slacks/White Rock descent is one of my favorites.
 

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WV has loads of epic riding but is a pretty good haul from DC area. You certainly won't be short changing yourself hitting the areas already mentioned and the drive is shorter which gives you more time to ride!
 

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Halfway between the two could potentially put GWNF in play. If so, that would be my choice (Braley and/or Dowells). Otherwise, I'm partial to Sherando. Western Slope has more variety, but Sherando is more backcountry, has more potential vert, and the Torry/Slacks/White Rock descent is one of my favorites.
We did Dowells and Braley last weekend. It was rolling very well, but was getting pretty overgrown to the point of seriously reduced sight lines.

In my experience, Sherando doesn't seem to ever get too over grown.
If you've never been to sherando, the "standard" lollipop loop is to park outside of the gate, ride thru ($1 fee for bikes vs like $5 for cars) take the road in past both lakes and turn left at the upper end of the upper lake. Take Whiterock gap trail all the way to the BRP (stay left at the fork you'll come down that way later). Right on BRP for 4ish miles to the Bald Mtn overlook and turn right on the fire road. Take 1st right on fire road and in a few hundred yards Torrey ridge trail is on the left. Descend that to the Slacks trail intersection. Right on Slacks that will dump you back out on Whiterock gap. Then just retrace your steps back to the car 18ish miles 2300 ft climbing. Super fun. You can knock a couple miles off by driving into the park to the upper lake parking area.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank you all for the input. I am in the process of making a google map with locations and also nerding out on Trailforks.

Do people normally carry bear spray etc in this area when out for a big long day? I haven't spent much time in this part of the world and just want to show up prepared.
 

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Best riding in VA
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Wakefield/Accotink
...said no one ever. :)

Seriously though, you can bypass Wakefield completely unless you enjoy riding terrible singletrack right next to a major highway. Not mentioned in that list are also Lorton and Lake Fairfax...while definitely not destination trails, they are much better/larger than Wakefield. When it comes down to it though, Fountainhead is the only system worth going to in NoVA if you are here for only a few days.

On a side note, if you want to hit up a beginner friendly bike park, Bryce is only about 1:15 from NoVA.
 

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CrgCrkRyder
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I am from western Virginia and usually ride there. When the temperatures get in the 90's, I like to ride in West Virginia when I can. Higher elevation trails there don't usually get above low 80's. Worth a visit if you are here long enough. Hard riding in natures obstacle course (rocks, roots, moss, and mud). Kennison mountain, Tea Creek trails, and Canaan Valley are classic WV trail destinations.
 

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I'm from NY, my wife and kids will be out of town and I have to be in Washington DC for work on Sunday July 7th. I am planning on leaving on the 3rd and heading into the hills for a few days before heading up to DC for 4 days locked in a hotel conference center.
QUOTE]

So what did you end up riding?
 
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