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Explore the best rated trails in Glen Allen, VA. Whether you're looking for an easy walking trail or a bike trail like the Mary Washington Hospital Trail and Rappahannock River Heritage Trail. With more than 11 trails covering 83 miles you're bound to find a perfect trail for you. Click on any trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.
As others have said - variable surface, smooth to pretty rough. I rode 12+12 from the west end on a bike w/ 40 mm tires, but no suspension. If you have a bike w/ suspension (at least on front), use it.
And within the first 1/2 mile the path crosses the tracks (and the surface changes from smooth bluestone to sloped loose gravel) - that caught me by surprise.
This trail pretty for walking and would be okay on a fat-tire bike with front shocks, but its surface is not for medium or narrow tires. It was a disappointment on my recumbent trike--crawling along on dirt, gravel, exposed railroad ties, and worse. I only rode 3 miles before turning around. However in that short space, I twice had to get off and walk over rails or narrow duckboards.
Tree covered trail extremely easy to manipulate.l
Nice shaded trail starting from the elementary school with bridges going over marshes, and creeks. Not lots of people, but set between some subdivisions. There were a few benches to sit on before getting to the meadow.
If you only have a few days/limited ride time - here are my suggestions, based on 2 days of riding and driving the entire trail (yes - it runs RIGHT BESIDE Hwy 5 for most of its length) Which is why I rate it a 4 instead of a 5.
Background: Trail surface is smooth. I was on the bike at sunrise and finished by 10AM or so - both days (weekdays) I saw fewer than 10 bikers my entire ride, even though this was the week of Spring break (April 4th, 2022) for the local schools. Both trail heads I parked at appeared safe - there were no cars there when I started and only a few when I finished.
Ride 1: Park at Chickahominy Riverfront Park MM 7, ride East to Jamestown. Jamestown Island has a 5+ mile road that is one way, with a low speed limit. Less than 1 mile from the Jamestown TH is the Powhatan Creek Trail - a nice 2+ mile out and back trail (hilly ride, winding, lots of rough pavement from tree roots, but repairs are in the works). You can also ride several miles of unpaved paths off of the Powhatan Creek Trail. And of course, ride over the Chickahominy Creek bridge to finish your ride. I was able to get in 35 miles on this route. This entire ride is safe for all riders. Also - Colonial Parkway from Jamestown to Colonial Williamsburg is a safe ride with no commercial traffic allowed, but it is a rough surface. The bike route separates from Colonial Parkway - best to follow it rather than stay on Colonial where there is a tunnel that prohibits bicycles.
Ride 2: Park at Four Mile Creek Park MM 40 (a nice drive on a winding Hwy 5 with minimal traffic from Jamestown), ride West to Richmond. The Great Shiplock Park and Canal Walk are interesting. This is a much hillier ride than the Jamestown end, with several traffic light road crossings. Safe - but not ideal for all riders. With a ride through Dorey Park in Varina, I was able to get in 29 miles.
Overall a nice trail, very smooth surface, with some sections more appealing than others. Jamestown Island was the highlight.
Love this trail can’t wait to go back
We love biking rail trails so when we had a wedding in Richmond we decided to bike the VA Capital trail. We broke up the trip at a bnb in Charles City. We stayed at the Edgewood BnB which was right on the trail but in the middle of nowhere. We arrived hot and tired so the pool was refreshing but the nearest restaurant was 8 miles away - that would add 16 miles to our tired legs so the inn keeper was kind enough to drive us to the restaurant. Inn was clean and historic. The next night we stayed at the wedmore winery in Williamsburg. Which was very nice as well but being on bikes we were far from any kind of night life. The trail wasn’t very scenic as is was along a highway with very little areas to stop for food or bathroom s no shade so we did not want my to bike back. We ended up staying at the winery another night and taking the train back to Richmond. highwayThere was no shade and very few places to stop along the way.
…and we rode the trail back to Jamestown. This was in late October of 2021 and we were looking for fall foliage. We were a couple of weeks early. A great ride overall, though, and the trail was in great shape.
I started out planning to ride the entire trail, beginning at the trailhead on Bloombury Rd. I made it to Mile Marker 4, which is another trailhead, and decided I’d had enough for one day. The scenery is absolutely beautiful, but some have mentioned the rocks. At this end of the trail, there is only gravel. My problem, for which there’s no real solution, was the roots that crisscross the trail. They’re not the huge roots that can take you down, but they’re unavoidable, and there are a lot of them, and they make for pretty rough riding. I agree with those who recommend fat tires/mountain bikes.
Some parts are fine, parts very bumpy, and some sections have very thick, large stones that are difficult to maneuver through.
Our first time on this trail. For cyclist I would recommend a mountain bike, skinny tires would not be fun. Quiet except for the gunshots in the distance the first 1 to 2 miles but hey you are out in the country. Nice tree covered trail reminds me of the Poolesville Md stretch of the C&O Canal Trail. relatively flat. We did not complete the full trail but will most definitely be back. The very few people we ran into on the trail were very friendly.
Started out from Richmond. Made it to Charles city. 37.5 this was for Memorial day weekend. Of 2021. Heading back for Labor day weekend. For round 2 .. going the distance. 52
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