10 Virginia Bicycle Routes for Any Season

by Casey Higgins | Posted: Nov 2, 2015 | Updated: Mar 9, 2017

Comments: 19 Comments

Any season is the perfect season if you’re an avid cyclist. Neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet … you get the picture. Roll on along Virginia’s most popular bicycle routes and enjoy the beauty of now.

 

HIGH BRIDGE TRAIL | BURKEVILLE TO PAMPLIN CITY —

At 31 miles long, this rail-to-trail is a beautiful stroll through small communities with the namesake High Bridge being the cherry on top. Finely crushed limestone makes for an easy, pretty level ride.

TIP: Stop for lunch in Farmville. The Bakery, an “as seen on TV” diner, and a waterfront eatery are all steps from the trail.

High Bridge Trail State Park

High Bridge Trail State Park

 

VIRGINIA CAPITAL TRAIL | RICHMOND TO WILLIAMSBURG —

Connecting the Commonwealth’s past and present capitals is the 52-mile Virginia Capital Trail. You’ll love its paved surface, the bridges, fences, cornfields, and other nice details along the route.

TIP: Check out the interactive Trail Map to pin down parking and restrooms. For lunch, consider Cul’s Courthouse Grille. It’s a mid-way point offering delicious specials.

Virginia Capital Trail

Virginia Capital Trail

 

NEW RIVER TRAIL | PULASKI TO GALAX —

A rail trail, New River Trail meanders 57 miles through four counties while paralleling the river for which it’s named for 39 miles. It’s a multi-use trail, welcoming to hikers, cyclists, and equestrians.

TIP: Download the Trail Guide to identify parking, camping, restrooms, and points of interest. Get sidetracked for a little while to enjoy lunch in Wytheville. We hear there are “world famous hot dogs” there.

New River Trail State Park

New River Trail State Park

 

VIRGINIA CREEPER TRAIL | ABINGDON TO WHITETOP —

If you want to, the Virginia Creeper Trail can be all down hill. Now that is my kind of cycling. The 34.3-mile rail trail is beautiful in every season, and is a multi-use trail open for horseback riding, cycling, and hiking.

TIP: Connect with a bike service to ride the route backwards. Whitetop Station to Alvardo Station is down hill (*wink*). GPS Directions for Parking

Virginia Creeper Trail

Virginia Creeper Trail

 

HEART OF APPALACHIA BIKE ROUTE | BURKES GARDEN TO COEBURN —

Serious cyclists will love this 128-mile route comprised of roads, rail trails, single-track trails, and more. Make it a “bucket list” item and backpack your way through it, from Burkes Garden to Guest River Gorge in Coeburn. Take a little more time and explore the additional 40 miles of side trails, which lead to beautiful places like Russell Creek Falls and The Pinnacle at Big Cedar Falls.

TIP: Be prepared. This is a fairly self-sufficient adventure. RideWithGPS.com Route Map

Scenic Burkes Garden

Scenic Burkes Garden

 

COLONIAL PARKWAY | JAMESTOWN TO YORKTOWN —

This historic 23-mile drive is beautiful as fall colors appear in early November. It’s a fantastic route for leaf peepers and history lovers alike, as the 17th century comes into view with connected destinations like Jamestown, Williamsburg, and Yorktown.

TIP: Be aware that motorists share the Parkway. Bicycles and pedestrians are not allowed through the Williamsburg tunnel. More Information

Colonial Parkway

Colonial Parkway

 

MOUNT VERNON TRAIL | ARLINGTON TO MOUNT VERNON —

Winding from George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate to Theodore Roosevelt Island, this 18-mile paved multi-use trail connects to four other trails, including the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Trail. Presidential pedaling indeed.

TIP: Pop into The Chart House in Old Town Alexandria for a diverse menu of lunch options. It’s also a great place from which to people watch. Trail Map

Mount Vernon Bike Trail

Mount Vernon Bike Trail

 

WASHINGTON & OLD DOMINION TRAIL | ARLINGTON TO PURCELLVILLE —

At 45 miles long, the paved W&OD Trail is a popular route of transportation for residents commuting on bicycles. From Purcellville in Loudoun County into the Shirlington neighborhood of Arlington, it’s a gem of a rail trail with plenty of Civil War history for those who care to learn a bit more.

TIP: This trail can get pretty busy, so if you are coming on a weekend be prepared to face the crowds.

Washington & Old Dominion Railroad Regional Park

Washington & Old Dominion Railroad Regional Park

 

TOBACCO HERITAGE TRAIL | BROADNAX TO SOUTH HILL —

The Tobacco Heritage Trail is a regional endeavor to create a multi-use trail system for hikers and cyclists. Various segments are already open for your exploration and enjoyment.

TIP: The web map displays trailheads, parking, and towns. Know before you go.

Tobacco Heritage Trail

Tobacco Heritage Trail

 

U.S. BICYCLE ROUTE 76 ON THE BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY | AFTON TO MONTEBELLO —

Who has the most miles of the U.S. Bicycle Route System? Virginia, of course, with 838 miles. Bike a section of it when you enjoy 25 miles USBR 76 as it shares the road with the Blue Ridge Parkway in Nelson County.

TIP: Hit a triple when you hike part of the Appalachian Trail. It parallels and criss-crosses this same segment of road for about 10 or more miles.

Cycling the Blue Ridge Parkway

Cycling the Blue Ridge Parkway

 

Download the Virginia Bicycle Map: Side One | Side Two

 

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19 Comments on "10 Virginia Bicycle Routes for Any Season"

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Delia Hudgins
Guest

I absolutely loved the peace and beauty of the capital Trail between Jamestown and Richmond right in the heart of the colonial district. Well done lots of families and hard-core cyclists getting their miles in sharing the trail.

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[…] level of experience. It also offers some of the best views you can find while riding. Find out why biking in Virginia may be what you have been looking for to fill your free […]

Julio
Guest

Love it

Sidney
Guest

Also, some idea of level of difficulty and whether it’s hilly or flat is very important to me.

Vincenzo
Guest

An important (and quick/simple) piece of information to include in each trail description is the surface type. You note it in some of them (paved, limestone), but it’s a critical piece of information for most road bikers, whose bikes are not suitable for unpaved trails.

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[…] ALSO SEE: Virginia’s Coastal Spring Drives and 10 Virginia Bicycle Routes for Any Season […]

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[…] 3. Explore Biking Trails […]

Betsy Ballowe
Guest

It would be helpful to have info about the grade of the trails…how hilly, completely flat, mild climbs, etc.

Boo
Guest

Please make maps with these great lists!!!! Thanks!!!

Dave Neudeck
Admin

Boo, Hi! Thanks for the compliment and we do try and add maps to the articles when we can. In the mean time, check out http://www.virginia.org/bicycling/ for more information on some of the trails mentioned in this article with online and downloadable maps for each.

Reggie
Guest

Wow, wow, wow! Cannot wait to try some of them!

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