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Find the top rated cross country skiing trails in Destin, whether you're looking for an easy short cross country skiing trail or a long cross country skiing trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a cross country skiing trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.
Just to let people know, conservation park at the west end has a 9 mile loop that I frequently ride. It is dirt/ gravel so no road bikes. Im not sure if all the other trails allow bikes but its all posted. Im adding a picture that shows the trails.
My husband and I took this trail and loved having the ocean on one side and the sound on the other side. Breezy, beautiful, and not difficult. Can’t wait to go again!
Rode the trail today parking at the visitor center (5533 Alabama). I rode north thru BWHT and the Military leg. Very enjoyable and well maintained. Water fountains and bathrooms available along the way (did not test the fountain or facilities). Rabbits, snake and squirrels in abundance. On my return from military base gate I rode past the visitor center south across Hwy 90 (difficult but with pedestrian signals). It is a nice activity bringing some diversity to a regular Navarre Beach day. I did not take advantage of the visitor center but from signs I felt it was open. I would ride this trail again and again.
We rode this trail in March, 2019 and would like to share some observations. The trail has great potential, connecting four state parks. Personally, when I ride it again, I would stick to the western section beginning just east of Grayton Beach SP to Topsail SP. The eastern section has over one hundred driveways and an annoying surface including paver bricks and sidewalk. In addition, the Seaside and Seagrove Beach areas were very congested and I had to walk my bike through crowds of people. To be fair though, it was during spring break.
This is a fine trail. I don’t understand why the other writer rated it so low. The surface is in excellent condition, there appears to be a low threat of any crime, and most of the trail is near woods or fields with no car traffic nearby. The only downside is the hot location in Florida. This is a perfect winter trail.
Gayle's trails is actually four different interconnected trails, each interesting. I suggest that you park in Frank Brown Park, which has bathrooms and water. The park also is the trail head and has a very useful map of the trail system.
The Pensacola Beach Trail is part of my favorite Florida rides. What really makes this ride special is the additional mileage you can do on both ends of the trail. If you start at the eastern most point and continue east, you are on wide bike lanes which are extensions to the road. This takes you through Gulf Islands National Seashore park. All you see on both sides is sand and water. Since Santa Rosa island is about 2 miles off the Florida mainland, you have the sound to your left and the Gulf of Mexico on your right. This is totally undeveloped. You can take this all the way into Navarre Beach. The road speed limit is only 35 MPH so passing cars don't speed by you. It is also a low traffic road so most of the time you are by yourself. The park has some facilities but you must pay to use them.
If you follow the trail west, you will end just outside Fort Pickens which is also part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore park system. You must pay to enter the park, but the ride to the Fort is again beautiful and has little traffic. This Civil War fort is the only one (from the original 3) that still survives. It was the only fort in this area that the Confederates did not overrun. It was also a temporary holding ground from Geronimo after he was captured. There are rest room here and a convenience store right outside the campgrounds. Be sure to watch the movie about the fort. It will give you a lot of background to the area. If you are lucky you will see the Blue Angels practice because you right next to the Naval Air Base.
If you include the two side trips, the total round trip ride is around 55 miles. Quite pleasant and FLAT!!! However, being next to the water, you will always be dealing with wind. Wear LOTS of sun blocker because there is NO SHADE.
If you're training for the Tour d'Anything, this isn't the trail for you. If you want to park your car in one of the towns and use the bikes to Gary around, they're great.
We ride "hybrid" bikes (something in between road bikes and mountain bikes). We found them pretty ideal for this trail.
We parked at Seaside and rode east to Camp Helen State Park. The park itself isn't a bad ride.
Another day, we went west to Grayton Beach. We ran into trail construction there, but we rode south to the beach, and around town. We later found that we probably could have re-entered the trail on the west side of town, and continued westward. The construction looked almost complete, so it is likely to be a non-issue soon after this review is posted.
The trail is ideal for exploring the towns, and goes close to lots of shops and restaurants.
There were a few other trails heading north toward hwy 98 that were in the final stages of construction. These were interesting, and we may explore them next year.
Two days after riding from Rosemary Beach to Seacrest and back (see "Not Close To Its Potential"), we returned and rode the section from Watercolor to Grayson Highlands State Park and back. This section has been significantly improved. Although still too narrow and unlined, the asphalt is smooth and adequately separated from the roadway, with new bridges. Someone needs to pay for similar improvements from Watercolor east. If they do, this would be a 4 or 5 star ride.
We rode 8 miles of this "trail", from the unmarked east end in Rosemary Beach to Seaside Beach, and back. This "trail", for most of the distance we rode, is just a very narrow glorified sidewalk, ill-maintained and in places downright dangerous. Parts of the "trail" are simply road shoulders, with no more than a few feet of separation from opposite direction vehicle traffic. That some vehicles have in the past entered the "trail" was evident from the bent-over rubber posts supposedly delineating the edge of the "trail" / road.
We passed at least a dozen bicycle rental outlets, each with hundreds of bikes. We were told that during peak vacation periods most of those bikes would be out on the "trail", with many very young and at times unsteady riders capable of veering into oncoming bicycle or vehicular traffic. While it was not busy during our ride, we saw no one else wearing helmets.
Between the bicycle concessionaires, the owners of the very valuable adjoining properties, the restaurants and other business profiting from trail users, the municipalities through which 30A passes and the county road commission, sufficient funds should available to (1) widen the trail to a minimum of 10', (2) repave the entire trail, (3) add appropriate paint markings and a center division line, and (4) install guardrails between the highway and the trail where the trail cannot be moved away from the road.
Given its premium location, this "trail" has the potential for perfection. At present, it isn't even close.
I rode this trail the entire length. It is not a bicycle trail for serious bike riders. While it wanders through some beautiful terrain, it is compromised by many driveways and road crossings not to mention the multitude of pedestrians. In Rosemary Beach area it is a concrete sidewalk about 4 feet wide. In many places the trail is very rough with pots and bumps due to the many cuts and patches.
If you are into a slow touring ride you will be OK.
I was greatly disappointed in this trail. An 18-mile, paved trail sounds so wonderful, but the reality was a different story. It has so much potential, it is a shame that it wasn't better designed and isn't better maintained. Mountain bikers, walkers and joggers might find this trail ok, but there is a reason all the road-bikes were on the road and not on the trail, and someone on inline skates would not be able to use most of the parts of the trail we experienced (the 6.5 miles on the southeast section).
Having read the reviews of how busy and crowded this trail tends to be, we set out early on Christmas morning to enjoy this trail. We started at the southeast end of the trail, planning to ride our Trikkes at least 10 miles before turning around. The trail was so poor, we gave up in frustration at 6.5 miles, and Trikked back to the car. Perhaps further on the trail we would have encountered better conditions, but we were too tired of trying to navigate bad conditions to find out.
The trail is amazingly inconsistent. Some areas are narrow sidewalks, others are wider asphalt. A few sections are smooth, but too many sections are bumpy, with cracked asphalt that is heaving.
Much of the trail is below the level of the road, with little-to-no vegetation to stop the runoff of sand, dirt, rocks and debris, across the trail. Some sections are actually the shoulder of the road, with only flexible plastic pipes, sticking up perpendicular from the road, to divide the trail from the roadway, with cars and trucks flying by.
At various points, the property owners are watering the trail with their underground sprinkler system, creating puddles as deep as 2 inches. The design of the trails did not provide for drainage.
The one real plus is that in the morning, most of the trail is shaded, which would be wonderful on hot summer mornings.
The area near Alys Beach was beautiful. While I understand the money isn't available to have all 18 miles that nice, there is a lot that could be done with this trail to make it more enjoyable.
Today we drove up to Port St. Joe's to ride the Loggerhead Run Bike Path. This trail is not fancy, but it is more consistent, well designed for drainage and sand control, and a delight to ride, albeit with little shade. Those who designed and maintain the Timpoochee Trail could take some lessons from them. I only wish we had booked our accommodations near Port St. Joe's- but now we know for our next trip to the region.
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