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Bike the Virginia Creeper and/or New River Trail(s)

I'm tentatively planning to do a 2-day voyage to the Damascus, VA area for some bike riding.
I've never ridden these trails before, so we'll be learning together. The trails are rail-to-trail conversions, so the riding is not technical or steep climbs. Ride lengths can vary from about 17 miles to easily over 50. Planning to stay at BearTree Recreation Area campground.
Ride the VA Creeper on one day (Probably Friday) and ride the New River Trail on second day (Saturday).
Otherwise, I'll goof off and fish/canoe in the lake at the campground.
Distance / intensity of the riding is negotiable, and shuttles are available to get you and your bike to the top of the VA Creeper for a one-way downhill experience. I plan to ride it both ways. Bike rentals are also available.

Mountain bike and/or hybrid highly recommended. New clothes not recommended. Apparently this thing can get muddy if it rains.
Tentative dates... May 23 (Fri) and May 24 (Sat)

I welcome any planning input from anyone who has attempted this adventure before. My choice of campground is based on a recommendation of exactly one person who has actually been there once.

Respond with you interest/ideas, and I'll try to make this happen.
If this comes together, I'll set an RSVP deadline for the camping and book the campsite(s) based on number attending.

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  • A former member
    A former member

    Scouting mission complete...
    The trail is beautiful and in good shape. A hybrid or MTB will be fine.
    I camped at Whitetop (Beartree was full) and rode the whole thing from Whitetop to Abingdon and back. I didn't do this because I'm a particularly strong cyclist. I did this because I was reading the elevation chart backwards. I don't recommend this route.
    I was 55 miles into this adventure when I realized that my last 15+ would be uphill. Oooooops. This was not the plan.

    The climb up to Whitetop is not steep, but it was not particularly enjoyable as I was 5+ hours deep into the ride and racing the sunset to get back to camp.
    The climb to Abingdon is not bad at all, and there is a good BLT at the top.

    The drive up and back was also fun and scenic.

    May 25, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I have made no reservations. I think the campground will allow 2 tents and up to 6 people per site, so we're probably good for one campsite.
    I think the going rate for a shuttle is about $15/person.
    If we have multiple cars, we can probably avoid the shuttles.
    If you want to meet for dinner sometime to make some plans, I'm in. Any evening after 05/18/14 can probably work for me.

    I'm going to the Damascus area on 05/29, and I'll probably do some riding / scouting.

    May 5, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    The trip is still a go.
    I'm up for suggestions regarding details / schedules / ride preferences / etc.

    May 4, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    NOTE: The 8:00 am time in the announcement means almost nothing. I'm very flexible on the timing.
    8:00 am could be the departure from RDU, or 8:00 am could be saddle up time for the trail.

    I will defer the scheduling details to majority rule and use the experience(s) of the rest of the group.
    I'll be camping for two days, so my clock will be rising in the east and setting in the west.

    April 23, 2014

  • Gilbert p.

    I have not yet decided to go, but I have ridden the entire trail twice before... both times we stayed at the Hikers Inn - great hostel in Damascas. On day ONE we drove in from RDU, so we rode out to Abingdon and back in the PM. That half is basically a large bowl shape and not tough. On day TWO we rode to the NC end pt - climbed all the way in AM - allow time to stop along the way on the bridges (beautiful w/rocks & running water) - on the way back it is all downhill, so we stopped for lunch at only eating place on the trail. On Day THREE we had a spouse drive us up to the NC end pt and rode down in the AM stopping for breakfast at the same eating place, then drove home! We had a blast!

    1 · April 15, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Okay... Unofficial tentative dates changed to June 6 and 7.

    February 25, 2014

  • A former member

    A former member changed the date and time from Friday, May 23, 2014 at 8:00 AM to Friday, June 06, 2014 at 8:00 AM

    February 25, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    How about June 6 and 7 ???

    February 25, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I'd like to go but probably not Memorial Day weekend.

    February 25, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    If not Memorial Day weekend, what other date(s) do you have in mind?

    February 25, 2014

  • Dianna

    May go and ride on Saturday. Would like to ride the creeper trail though. Have never ridden it.

    February 25, 2014

1 went

  • A former member

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