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Going to ride with my father-in-law and 7 year old son. Father-in-law is most used to the dirt roads and paved. Would like to do some trail riding but don't want to challenge either of them, but I'd rather not be limited to the dirt roads in the area...

Suggestions?
 

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horseman
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355 Posts
easy rides

There isn't too much around but... If you go out to Mdburyville and ride the rail bed south along the lake, the first 4 miles are pretty tame. You'll go thru a small rock cut into a landing. Continueing south you'll go thru a very large rock cut (Dinodaur Land) and then you can follow the yellow blazes down to the brook, bridge and other side of the railbed. This section (I guess about a quarter of a mile is fairly rugged, especially for the uninitiated) changes back to an abandoned railbed, complete w/old ties in places. It is fairly rideablew/only one challenging dip. It's a terrific ride for spinning , if you're an accomplished mountainbiker, or an exercise in patience if you're bringing along the inexperienced. All in all though, it is as flat as you're ever going to get in Vermont. Round trip to the dam and back is going to be 16+ miles. I would just get them to the landing, park the bikes and go look at Dinosaur Land and head back for the first foray. If you head right after the landing for a little tast of "trail" the road turns into more of a 4 wheeler ride w/little annoying goddies that will challenge the beginner. Again, probably turn around when you get to the power line unless you want to wreck. the "new ones". For the real riders, there are a lot of fun options off these highways.
Another approach would be to head out Somerset Road, from Rte 9 and drive out several miles until you see a sign on the left that says "Road Closed" (that's why we call it "Road Closed road"). It's just before the bridge that right after the bridge is the left turn to the camping area (locals call that area the "airport" [there used to be a grass strip there a long time ago]). If you go out Road Closed road it will "jeep trailey" with Beaver ponds and things to see. You can go as far as you like and return the same way. Again, for the more accomplished, you could make more of this, but...
That would be about the best to "break'em in" and "get'em to come back".
 
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