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Shaq Fu
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all! I am going to be driving through Virginia and was hoping to work in a trail ride off Interstate 81.

What I am hoping is that some from the region could give me some good suggestions for a ride in this region. I can afford to make about a 2 to 3 hour stop. Ideally the trail will not be too far of a detour off I81.

Side concerns I have is that I will be riding solo. Remote technical rides are big fun, but not the smartest thing to do when alone. So I would hope that some of your trail sugestions will keep this in mind.

Thank you!
 

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the mountian is within
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543 Posts
off 81 at the I77 exit north a few miles is an awesome trail call 7sisters.
If in that area,post back a date and eta and maybe a few guys can meet up.

Bz
 

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the mountian is within
Joined
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543 Posts
off 81 at the I77 exit north a few miles is an awesome trail call 7sisters.
If in that area,post back a date and eta and maybe a few guys can meet up.

Bz
 

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the mountian is within
Joined
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543 Posts
off 81 at the I77 exit north a few miles is an awesome trail call 7sisters.
If in that area,post back a date and eta and maybe a few guys can meet up.

Bz
 

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i ride a bicycle
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156 Posts
Carvins Cove I 81 EXIT 141 if coming South EXIT 140 if going North RT 311 away from I81 right on Carvins Cove road ,( Just the right gear bike shop b4 this turn) parking lot on right . lots of info on trails forum .gr8 trails !
 

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gefiltephish
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I-81 is a long road

LOL I have been wondering the same thing.... as I drove from Harrisonburg (Exit 245 in VA) up to the Poconos, in PA. Especially in the Boonsboro/Hagerstown areas and near Harper's Ferry, where the Appalachain Trail is. There ought to be some decent riding around?

I can highly recommend riding around Harrisonburg. There is a great, newly contsructed network of trails right in town (Harrisonburg, VA), in Hillandale Park. The trails offer fun berms, very rocky sections with tons of line options, and a sweet pump track. Good level of difficulty without being 'out there' or with tons of elevation changes- it's a great warm up to the area's riding... 2-3 miles from 1-81, exit 245, Port Republic Rd. From there, go towards downtown (rt of I-81), take a left on rt 42 (high st), and follow signs for a right turn into Hillandale Park, where you can park. You could also park in many lots of Rt. 42 and ride to a trailhead at the westernmost end of South Avenue (google maps helps)

From Harrisonburg there is tons of sweet riding within a 1/2 hour's drive. The George Washngton National Forest to the west offers tons of riding options, including the epic decent from Reddish Knob, a shorter Hone Quarry Ridge loop, many loop options from Todd Lake (a bit further south, by staunton), etc. This area's rides require some brutal climbing but the sweet ridgeline trails, views, and epic decents make the effort worthwhile.One of the largest roadless areas in the Mid-Atlantic...

More epic riding further north near Strasburg (I-81, exit 300) in a different section of the GWNF. Again, tons of challenging rocky sections, a demoralizing climb, and an endless feeling downhill (on Bear Wallow trail, or down Buzzard's Rock). I find this to be an especially challenging, technical ride.

Nat'l Geographic makes excellent maps for both areas, and Hillandale is very well signed plus there's a map at several trailhead kiosks. Searching this section of the forum will yield tons of info on GWNF rides, including some pics of the Nat Geo maps... but feel free to PM for specific info.

Great thread! I'm curious about I-81 riding north of Strasburg/Winchester, since I'm cruising on I-81 all the time.
 

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3rd Battle of Winchester is about 2 minutes of 81. Pretty easy trails for the most part but fun for me since I am a beginner. So these trails would be pretty solo friendly and pretty much impossible to get lost in.
 

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Bikecurious
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You can hit Massanutten's western slope, just outside of H'burg (I think about 9 miles from 81 off exit 247), but you'll need a pass or need to hook up with one of the SVBC rides. And, as mentioned before, you've got the GWNF near Staunton, which has everything you could want. Most rides won't take more than about 2 hours at most, so with the 30 min drive from 81 that'll put you right in your timeframe. And if riding solo is a concern you could prob hook up with one of the SVBC rides or find some locals to show you around. But yeah, I hear you about the tech riding by yourself. I ride the GWNF regularly but don't usually do it alone because the trails see such little traffic. Could be several days before anyone finds my broken, battered, bear-mauled body.
 

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Shaq Fu
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for all the suggestions!

It looks like Carvins Cove is the best option for riding that fits my situation. My trip starts in Texas, and I hope to drive to the TN/VA border area first day. Then continue driving along I81, stopping off to ride Carvins Cove on Sunday Morning.

Also I looked into the Massanutten Mountain trails. Clearly from their policies they do not want people like me, or other cycle tourists from out of state to ride their trails. Although I never have a problem paying fees to ride on private or government property, $50 + club membership fees are excessive. http://www.svbcoalition.org/massanutten.php
 
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Massanutten

"Also I looked into the Massanutten Mountain trails. Clearly from their policies they do not want people like me, or other cycle tourists from out of state to ride their trails. Although I never have a problem paying fees to ride on private or government property, $50 + club membership fees are excessive. http://www.svbcoalition.org/massanutten.php"

Well there is 300+ miles of other trails within an hour or two for visitors to ride and we did have 400+ folks come ride the Hoo-Ha so we like visitors. The new trails at the Nut are purpose built for bikes and a mix of flowy sidehill and rocky gnar. All you need to ride them is to guest ride with a pass holder. It's nice to have a guide for navigation so you don't spend hours rolling old roads looking for the tasty trails. You can also stay at the resort and ride the trails for free.

If your interested on the way back south post on the SVBC forum and ask for someone to take you riding.

The Cove is a great choice for Sunday. The trails there keep getting better and better.

Enjoy the I-81 drive
 

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Carvins Cove near Exit 141

There are also some trails near Exit 105 (?) in Radford. I've walked them, and they look decent. Perhaps someone else has ridden those..
 

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I say Carvin's Cove is your best bet. Just go to the "Just the Right Gear" bike shop which is close to the trails and pick up a map and pick up a trail pass (it's like $2).

I've only ridden there once, but one problem I noticed was if you want to ride on Sunday it seems all the places that sell the trail passes are closed, but a pass is still required. Lucky I was there for a couple of days and scoped out the area on Saturday and bought my pass, and rode on Sunday.
 

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Appalachian Highlander
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If you're stopping near Bristol anyway, you might want to check out the trails in that area. There are tons of fire roads (which I would consider ideal for solo riding) off of route 421 around South Holston Lake. There are also tons of more technical trails around Damascus, but there are plenty that are not far from town, and while they're not crowded, there are enough people biking around there that you could get some help if you needed it.
 

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Crawlin' like a Crawfish!
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Before you get to Bristol off exit 63 is the Warriors Path trails (excellent) and in Bristol is Steele Creek Park, which is not far off I-81 either. Google both and I have found trail maps and descriptions for both. Also check out www.NTMBA.org. They have trail postings for both.
 

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Pandapas on 460 west(VA exit 118B is only 20 minutes off the interstate and has some of Virginia's best trails
 

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COOL BUZZ & TASTY S-TRACK
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FreesteaderThed said:
Thanks for all the suggestions!

It looks like Carvins Cove is the best option for riding that fits my situation. My trip starts in Texas, and I hope to drive to the TN/VA border area first day. Then continue driving along I81, stopping off to ride Carvins Cove on Sunday Morning.

Also I looked into the Massanutten Mountain trails. Clearly from their policies they do not want people like me, or other cycle tourists from out of state to ride their trails. Although I never have a problem paying fees to ride on private or government property, $50 + club membership fees are excessive. http://www.svbcoalition.org/massanutten.php
I was just recently in Va visiting family and ended up going to Carvins Cove after doing some research. It's easy to find and the riding was great.

See my post here for my ride. There is a color map (post #52) I printed out that worked great for the ride, but the link isn't good right now.

Keep us posted.
 

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I"ll recommend Damascus area again, if you take exit 19 off of 81 and head toward Damascus the area has some really good trails including the Iron Mountain trail. Stop by Adventure Damascus and see if any of the guys are going for a ride that day they are all more than willing to show some trails
 
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