East Longmeadow, MA Atv Trails and Maps

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Recent Trail Reviews

Southern New England Trunkline Trail

The highs are high, but the lows are really low. Virtually impassable in places.

July, 2021 by yw8km5gp4n

My actual rating on this one is 2.5 stars. One glorious day, probably in a couple of decades, this will be an amazing trail. Right now, it is an extremely mixed bag, and very challenging to do all the way. Me and the friends I rode with didn't make it to the end.

We started on this one as a continuation of the Air Line State Park Trail in Connecticut, heading from west to east, with the Forge Park/495 train station as our destination. The Douglas portion of this one was fine; none of it is paved, but it's maintained, free of ballast and standing water, and our bikes (one loaded tourer and two old-fashioned/90s mountain bikes) were fine on it, if not quite as fast as they would be on asphalt. There was very little traffic; most of the way was reasonably shaded, and the grades are gentle. At some point in Douglas State Forest, it starts skewing downhill, but not really enough to be noticeable. I probably wouldn't take a road bike on it, but a decent all-purpose bike should do fine.

Things became a little harder in Uxbridge. The trail got narrower, rockier, with some overgrowth. There were some pools of standing water, felled trees, the occasional stretch of ballast, and a few above-grade road crossings (i.e., steep hill to the road, then steep hill to get back on the trail), and heavy damage from ATVs. I, on a touring bike, was able to negotiate it, but I had to *negotiate*. And, more than once, walk my bike.

Things continued to be mediocre-to-challenging as we we approached Route 146. At the highway -- which is an uncrossable, shadless, multi-lane freeway -- the trail became complete garbage. We waded through deep pools of standing water and fought our way through fetid, swampy overgrowth before the way basically just disappeared. We had to ride *right* next to the highway itself for a short distance to find a steep, rocky little side path that drops you onto a surface road.

According to the information we had, the trail could be reacquired by riding through some nearby industrial parking lots, but this turned out not to be the case. Thank Cthulhu for Google Maps, because it seems you actually have to detour about a mile on the local roads, which are wide, fast, and without shade, in order to find the entrance to the Blackstone River Greenway, which is the next stretch of the trail. There is next to no signage for any of this.

After the mess that was Uxbridge, the BRG was *exceptional*. Smooth, shady, not heavily trafficked, and some beautiful views from river bridges. I enjoyed every single foot of it. Unfortunately, it dead-ends at a bridge that's still under construction. We needed to leave the BRG anyway, since it will ultimately connect to an existing trail in Rhode Island.

Returning to surface streets, there was no sign of the trail at this point, so we consulted Google Maps again and went up Castle Hill Way, which is a subdivision of condos, devoid of any indication that the trail's right-of-way is there. You have to ride up the road and then go through a little grassy area to get to the gate where the trail picks up. It was doable, but rocky and overgrown, with pockets of ballast and standing water, and stretches damaged by ATVs. Fun for mountain and gravel bikers, maybe, but not so much for us. There was a fenced-off road crossing, but we could maneuver our bikes around it.

The trail continued to be in poor condition, and eventually, somewhere in Bellingham, we ran into a long section of standing water and ballast. Amid the bugs, the heat, and the horrible, nearly impassable terrain, we decided we'd had enough and exited onto Old Elm St., taking the road the rest of the way. Had we gone another mile or so, we would have reached Center St., which we'd heard is where the trail becomes a smoothly paved path all the way to Grove St. in Franklin. We did pass an intersection with the trail on our way to the train station, so that seems to be correct.

So, as I said, this will be an incredible bike path one day. For now, except for the Douglas section, the Blackstone River Greenway ,and the paved section in Franklin and Bellingham, it is best used by people with strong mountain/gravel biking skills, and equipment to match. The painful parts are just not worth it.

Quinebaug River Trail

Short and sweet

July, 2021 by yw8km5gp4n

Rode most of this one with some friends, picking it up in Danielson. Finding it was a tad tricky, but maybe that was related to where we picked it up. Once we got going, we really liked it. Smooth pavement, very well-shaded, and right next to a peaceful river. Absolutely wonderful after a long day of riding in near-90 degree heat. I wish it could have gone on longer.

Washington Secondary Bike Path

That's what I'm talking about

July, 2021 by yw8km5gp4n

Rode this with some friend, starting in Cranston, all the way to the end. I thought it was great! Good pavement and well-shaded in Cranston and Coventry, although things got a touch bumpy in West Warwick due to tree roots, and there was less shade there as well. Oh, and there wasn't much traffic either, which is a nice change from what I'm used to. Overall, it was everything I want in a rail trail, except for one thing: going from east to west, the last few miles are a steady climb. Since this is a rail trail, it's a relatively gentle climb, but it's constant and your legs will feel it. My advice is to shift to a slightly easier gear, get a good cadence going, and just take your time!

Accordion

Moosup Valley State Park Trail

Mountain bikes only

July, 2021 by yw8km5gp4n

Rode most of this with some friends. I was on a hardcore touring bike (Surly Disc Trucker), under load, and they were on older '90s-style mountain bikes. We made it, but a lot of it was rough going. Many parts are rocky and heavily damaged by ATVs. We occasionally had to slog through deep pools of standing water and mud; this was also the case on the Trestle Trail in Rhode Island, with which this trail connects. Overall, on the bikes we had with us, it wasn't much fun. If you're a causal rider and prefer paved rail trails, you won't have a good time. But, if you have a very capable gravel or mountain bike, and you know how to use it, then you might enjoy this one. Otherwise, avoid. Hopefully this trail gets fixed up and at least re-graded and re-surfaced someday, but I'm not holding my breath.

North Central Pathway

Ride it often

July, 2021 by facebook152

This is a nice (mostly flat) trail that is paved from the road behind the Clark YMCA all the way to 140. There is a short on-road section with a decent uphill to pick up the trail over by Rt 140. Past 140, the trail alternates between sand, gravel, and loose rock on one uphill. Trail suddenly ends at a barrier that’s the edge of a cemetary.

CTfastrak Multi-Use Trail

Not all that but not bad

July, 2021 by bblhed_tl

I rode this trail out and back on 7/15/2021. Total out and back ride clocked in at 9.55 miles, 150 feet elevation change down heading North, so 150 feet uphill heading back South. I parked in the shopping plaza by the Taco Bell and rode the bike lane to the CTfastrack station where the trail starts.

For the most part the trail was clean except for a broken bottle just outside the first station, and a couple of trash cans that were left out for pickup on one of the sidewalk sections. There were not many people on the actual trail and every single one of them said hello and or thanked me for signaling when passing. The trail parallels not only the bus lane, but also an active train line, Amtrak is doing work on the line so in some places you can smell the new ties that they are installing. On the north end of the trail I stopped at a Dunkin' that was across the street from the station, and at the south end I stopped by the bike shop that is next to the hotel and part of the parking garage. There is a mix of businesses along the trail including convince stores and places to get food. The scenery is a mix of urban, industrial, tree lined, train tracks, and bus depots, if you pay attention you will even see a fiberglass Cobra Shelby along the sidewalk section. You will see plenty of busses, and if you are lucky maybe a train.

Charter Oak Greenway

Just (Don't) Do It

July, 2021 by th3indexer

[Biked from Bushnell Park to Charter Oak Park and back, 7/11/21]
If you're driving to a trail, don't make it this one. As many have said, the experience of biking next to the I-384 is less than stellar. There were two places where the vegetation had overgrown the trail to the point where some cyclists are going to crash sooner rather than later. The trail is boring, the street portions are boring, there's really nothing that makes this trail stand out. If you don't want to see people but you want to hear cars anyway, this might be the trail for you. Hardly anyone else on the trail, must be that everyone else is wiser than I. Aside from being a boring, noisy trail with occasional Jumanji hazards, the pavement itself is in decent shape and the hills give a workout so I'll refrain from giving this 1 star.

I won't blame this on the trail given the recent storms, but there was also a downed tree blocking the entire path and the only way around was a muddy, flooded detour some intrepid souls must've carved.

Also protip: Labyrinth appears to be closed on Sundays, I'd call ahead if you're planning a beer with your ride :(

Manhan Rail Trail

Great! Flat, paved, fairly picturesque

July, 2021 by ajgreenhalgh

I like this trail to walk because it is well paved, flat, no hills, and friendly considerate people especially the bike riders who usually indicate when they are passing me. There is some industrial and kind of dumpy areas that abut the trail unlike where I came from, Woodstock NY, where the paths are pristine and beautiful. However, I like where the trail crosses a bridge across the Mill River just past Veterans Field in Northampton.

Bloomfield Greenway Multi-Use Trail

great ride for beginners

July, 2021 by vegito_ssj22001

This is a great ride for me to test my novice skills. I find myself coming back to here twice a week after work just to get a quick workout in

Fort Hill Recreational Rail Trail

Prospect Street to Brattleboro Bridge

July, 2021 by aldcon_tl

Started at Prospect Street boat launch and road north. First mile or two of trail is wide and gravel with potholes. Nice scenery next to river. I'd score this part of the trail a 3. From mile 2 to 3 the trail is still wide but mostly grass with two dirt tracks (a car width apart). Grass is about 8 to 12" tall. Hard to see some bumps and defects. I'd score this part of the trail a 2. From mile 3.2 to the bridge at mile 4.4 (all distances from Prospect Street) boat launch the trail is in poor condition and a single track. I'd score this a 1. The bridge is the remnant of an impressive structure. The steel is rusty but in good shape. The timbers are rotting but for those not intimidated they can be walked. It's a shame the bridge isn't being saved for rail trail users. This is a dead end. I wanted to get back on to Route 119. I needed to go back 1.2 miles to find a poor quality side trail that dumped me out behind the Sunoco gas station.
The scenery on the ride was the best for the first 2 miles of the trip. After that, in general, you are inland and not looking to the side. Your focus is on navigating the trail.

Ashuwillticook Rail Trail

Amazing Trail

July, 2021 by cklewis24

We just rode this trail for the first time and we will certainly be back. Amazing views, paved surface, and plenty of opportunities to stop and sit. The only improvement I would suggest would be to add mile markers.

Southern New England Trunkline Trail

West St Uxbridge to Connecticut border

June, 2021 by rickhavu

I went from West St., Uxbridge, MA to the Connecticut boarder, it was around 8 1/2 miles on the way and over 16 miles round trip. Nice ride, saw 1 horse along the ride along with a few walkers and bikers.

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