West Virginia Running Trails and Maps

610 Reviews

Looking for the best Running trails around West Virginia?

Find the top rated running trails in West Virginia, whether you're looking for an easy short running trail or a long running trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a running trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.

City Trails and Maps in West Virginia

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Activities
Length
Surfaces
Type
71 Results
Activities
Length
Surfaces
Type

Allegheny Highlands Trail

26 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Barnum Rail-Trail

4.2 mi
State: WV
Ballast, Dirt, Grass

Big Stonecoal Trail

4.3 mi
State: WV
Ballast, Dirt, Gravel

Blackwater Canyon Trail

10.7 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Gravel

Brooke Pioneer Trail

6.7 mi
State: WV
Asphalt

Caperton Trail

5.7 mi
State: WV
Asphalt

Carpendale Trail

0.8 mi
State: MD, WV
Crushed Stone

Cheat Lake Trail

4.5 mi
State: WV
Crushed Stone

Clover Trail

2 mi
State: WV
Dirt

County Line Trail (WV)

4 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Cranberry Tri-Rivers Rail Trail

16 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Gravel

Davis Trail

2.6 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Deckers Creek Trail

19.5 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

East Fork Trail (WV)

8 mi
State: WV
Dirt

East Wetzel Rail-Trail

1.5 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Dirt, Sand

Elk River Trail (Coonskin Park)

1.5 mi
State: WV
Gravel

Elk River Trail (WV)

37 mi
State: WV
Crushed Stone

Glade Creek Trail

5.8 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Gravel

Glen Dale to Moundsville Rail-Trail

3.4 mi
State: WV
Asphalt
Accordion

Great American Rail-Trail

3743.9 mi
State: DC, IA, ID, IL, IN, MD, MT, NE, OH, PA, WA, WV, WY
Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone

Green Mountain Trail

4.1 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Greenbrier River Trail

78 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Harpers Ferry Railroad Bridge

0.14 mi
State: MD, WV
Boardwalk

Harrison North Rail Trail

7 mi
State: WV
Cinder, Grass, Gravel

Harrison South Rail Trail

5.6 mi
State: WV
Crushed Stone, Grass

Hawks Nest Rail Trail

1.8 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Gravel

Joel McCann Memorial Trail

1.1 mi
State: WV
Crushed Stone

Kanawha Boulevard Trail

5.8 mi
State: WV
Asphalt

Kaymoor Trail

8.6 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Gravel

Keeneys Creek Trail

6.6 mi
State: WV
Gravel

Laurel Fork River Trail-South

9.6 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Laurelly Branch Trail

3.5 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Lewis McManus Memorial Honor Trail

4.1 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Limerock Trail

4 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Little Fork Trail

3.5 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Little Kanawha Connector Trail

1.5 mi
State: WV
Asphalt

Lumberjack Trail

5.7 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Marion County Trail (MCTrail)

2.5 mi
State: WV
Asphalt

Mon River Rail-Trail System

48.5 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Mon River Trail

23.7 mi
State: WV
Crushed Stone

Moore Run Trail

4.2 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Narrow Gauge Trail (WV)

3 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Gravel

North Bend Rail Trail

72 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Otter Creek Trail

11.8 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Panhandle Trail

29.2 mi
State: PA, WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Possession Camp Trail

3.2 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Potts Valley Rail Trail

4.5 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Grass

Railroad Grade Trail (WV)

3.2 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Red Creek Trail

6.4 mi
State: WV
Ballast, Dirt

Rend Trail (Thurmond-Minden Trail)

3.2 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Gravel

Rocky Point Trail

1.9 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Rohrbaugh Trail

3.6 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Rough Run Trail

3 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Seneca Creek Trail

5 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Shingletree Trail

4.5 mi
State: WV
Dirt

South Prong Trail

5.5 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Southern Railroad Trail

0.8 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Southside Trail

6.9 mi
State: WV
Ballast, Dirt, Gravel

Stone Camp Run Trail

1.5 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Tea Creek Trails

44 mi
State: WV
Dirt, Grass, Gravel

WV Route 9 Bike Path

10 mi
State: WV
Asphalt

Wellsburg Yankee Trail

2.2 mi
State: WV
Asphalt

West Fork River Trail

14 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

West Fork Trail

22 mi
State: WV
Ballast, Crushed Stone, Gravel

West Virginia Northern Rail-Trail

2 mi
State: WV
Crushed Stone

Wheeling Heritage Trails

16.5 mi
State: WV
Asphalt

White Oak Rail Trail (WV)

7.9 mi
State: WV
Asphalt, Crushed Stone

Whitmeadow Ridge Trail

5 mi
State: WV
Dirt

Widney Park Rail-Trail

0.8 mi
State: WV
Crushed Stone
Trail Image Trail Name States Length Surface Rating
The Allegheny Highlands Trail (AHT) follows the original route of the West Virginia Central and Pittsburgh Railway, built by Henry Gassaway Davis in 1884. For 26 miles, this exceptionally scenic trail...
WV 26 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
Nestled in a northern valley of West Virginia, the Barnum Rail-Trail follows the North Branch Potomac River through the superb scenery of the Upper Potomac region. If you plan to explore this...
WV 4.2 mi Ballast, Dirt, Grass
In West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest, the Dolly Sods Wilderness features sweeping vistas, spruce and aspen groves, beautiful meadows, beaver dams and rolling creeks. The area is also home to...
WV 4.3 mi Ballast, Dirt, Gravel
The Blackwater Canyon Trail follows one of the most challenging and picturesque segments of the former West Virginia Central & Pittsburgh Railway. On its 10.7-mile run deep through the Monongahela...
WV 10.7 mi Dirt, Gravel
Closure Notice: As of March 2021, portions of the northern end of the trail south of Wellsburg are closed due to the construction of a new bridge across the Ohio River that will include a shared-use...
WV 6.7 mi Asphalt
The central point of the Caperton Trail is located in Morgantown, known as the home of West Virginia University, the inspiration for a Joni Mitchell song and the birthplace of Don Knotts. Morgantown...
WV 5.7 mi Asphalt
The Carpendale Trail straddles the North Branch of the Potomac River between Carpendale in West Virginia and Cumberland in Maryland. The wooden bridge spanning 386 feet across the river is a...
MD, WV 0.8 mi Crushed Stone
The Cheat Lake Trail is the result of a generous donation of land by Allegheny Energy (now FirstEnergy) near its Lake Lynn Power Station on scenic Cheat Lake. The area was once home to West Penn...
WV 4.5 mi Crushed Stone
West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest offers a wide variety of trails for day or multi-day hikes of varying levels of difficulty, including several trails built on former logging railroad...
WV 2 mi Dirt
The County Line Trail is a short, less-traveled alternative to the neighboring 21.7-mile West Fork Trail. The County Line Trail travels 4 miles along the border of Randolph and Pocahontas counties,...
WV 4 mi Dirt
The Cranberry Tri-Rivers Rail-Trail, also called the Cranberry Rail-Trail, is named for the Cranberry, Cherry and Gauley rivers it travels along or across. The trail begins in downtown Richwood,...
WV 16 mi Dirt, Gravel
Located in Blackwater Falls State Park in the Monongahela National Forest, the Davis Trail is an easy rail-trail that ambles up Canaan Mountain as it heads south towards Canaan Valley Resort State...
WV 2.6 mi Dirt
Morgantown is known as the home of West Virginia University, the inspiration for a Joni Mitchell song and the birthplace of Don Knotts. But it’s also known for its extensive rail-trail system along...
WV 19.5 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The scenic East Fork Trail follows the East Fork of the Greenbrier River through hemlock stands and pine plantations and past many small waterfalls, extending 8 miles from the Island Campground in...
WV 8 mi Dirt
The East Wetzel Rail-trail is a 1.5 mile pathway that runs through the town of Hundred in West Virginia. The trail provides connectivity to various local destinations including the high school, the...
WV 1.5 mi Asphalt, Dirt, Sand
The Elizabeth J. “Binky” Poundstone Memorial River Trail is nestled into the City of Buckhannon, tucked along the Buckhannon River in the foothills of the Allegheny Mountains. A short portion of the...
WV 1.9 mi Asphalt
Kanawha County’s Elk River Trail provides access to Coonskin Park, a large park originally built by local residents in the 1950s and now managed by the Kanawha County Parks and Recreation Commission....
WV 1.5 mi Gravel
Clay County boasts nearly 30 miles of trail snaking along the Elk River. The crushed stone trail now starts further north in Frametown before it reaches Duck, where there is a trailhead which doubles...
WV 37 mi Crushed Stone
Situated in the heart of West Virginia's pristine New River Gorge National River, the Glade Creek Trail (out-and-back only) has something for everyone. Once a narrow gauge railroad corridor used to...
WV 5.8 mi Dirt, Gravel
The Glen Dale to Moundsville Rail-Trail runs for 3.4 paved miles between Glen Dale City Park and Moundsville Riverview Park. The trail parallels the Ohio River behind shopping plazas and...
WV 3.4 mi Asphalt
Accordion
Note: This developing route is not yet fully contiguous – it is just over 50% complete. Please refer to the Trail Map for more information on the existing sections of trail, as well as the online...
DC, IA, ID, IL, IN, MD, MT, NE, OH, PA, WA, WV, WY 3743.9 mi Asphalt, Concrete, Crushed Stone
The Monongahela National Forest’s Otter Creek Wilderness has many trails, mostly for hiking through the scenic landscape of rhododendron, timber and mosses. Biking is prohibited on the trails, but...
WV 4.1 mi Dirt
The Greenbrier River Trail is arguably West Virginia’s premier rail-trail, running for 78 miles past remote small towns and through lush forests along the banks of the longest undammed river in the...
WV 78 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
This rail-with-trail bridge crosses the Potomac River near its confluence with the Shenandoah River, at Harpers Ferry, West Virginia. A cantilevered section of the bridge allows pedestrian access...
MD, WV 0.14 mi Boardwalk
The Harrison North Rail Trail follows the West Fork River from North View in Clarksburg north, ending at a dead-end just south of the communities of Spelter and Meadowbrook. Recently repaired, the...
WV 7 mi Cinder, Grass, Gravel
When complete, the Harrison South Rail Trail will extend south from Veteran's Memorial Park and the Louis A. Johnson VA Medical Center in Clarksburg to the rural community of Lost Creek. The trail,...
WV 5.6 mi Crushed Stone, Grass
The Hawks Nest Rail Trail is located primarily within Hawks Nest State Park near Ansted. The trail is nearly 2 miles long and runs on the south side of Mill Creek, beginning near the nature center....
WV 1.8 mi Dirt, Gravel
The Joel McCann Memorial Trail is part of what will one day be a 16-mile rail-trail from Barrackville to Mannington following the former Baltimore & Ohio (B&O) Railroad. Currently, a 1-mile section of...
WV 1.1 mi Crushed Stone
This walking and biking path runs through the heart of West Virginia's state capital, Charleston. The trail sits right on the north bank of the Kanawha River, offering panoramic river views right from...
WV 5.8 mi Asphalt
Closure Notice: The National Park Service has closed this trail from the Wolf Creek Trailhead to the junction with the Kaymoor Miners Trail, as of September 2021. The trail is estimated to remain...
WV 8.6 mi Dirt, Gravel
Located in the gorgeous New River Gorge in rural West Virginia, the Keeney's Creek Trail is a gravel trail that doubles as a road for park service vehicles. Although built on top of an abandoned...
WV 6.6 mi Gravel
WV 9.6 mi Dirt
West Virginia's Monongahela National Forest offers a wide variety of trails for day or multi-day hikes of varying levels of difficulty, including several trails built on former logging railroad...
WV 3.5 mi Dirt
The Lewis McManus Memorial Honor Trail, also known as the Beckley Rail Trail, travels from Mabscott, through the heart of Beckley, north to the Beckley Crossing Shopping Mall. It follows the route of...
WV 4.1 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The Lewisburg and Ronceverte Trail (commonly known as the L&R Trail) will one day connect these two historic towns set amid the Allegheny Mountains of southern West Virginia. The beautiful natural...
WV 0.4 mi Asphalt
The Limerock Trail is pure West Virginia: From Forest Service Road 18, the 4-mile rail-trail passes through rhododendron forests and along rocky cliffs and rushing streams. You begin with the sound of...
WV 4 mi Dirt
West Virginia's Monongahela National Forest offers a wide variety of trails for day or multi-day hikes of varying levels of difficulty, including several trails built on former logging railroad...
WV 3.5 mi Dirt
The Little Kanawha Connector Trail stretches west to east across Parkersburg, a city located at the confluence of the Ohio and Little Kanawha rivers in West Virginia. The trail is a combination of...
WV 1.5 mi Asphalt
Located in the Spruce Knob-Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area of the Monongahela National Forest—a hotspot for mountain biking and rock climbing—the Lumberjack Trail offers a scenic hike on an old...
WV 5.7 mi Dirt
The Marion County Trail—better known as the MCTrail—runs for nearly 3 miles along Pricketts Creek through rural Marion County. The trail's main highlight is a 1,200-foot lighted tunnel (Meredith...
WV 2.5 mi Asphalt
Three trails comprise the Mon River Rail-Trail System—the Mon River Trail, Caperton Trail, and Deckers Creek Trail, which radiate from Morgantown for 48 miles through former Allegheny Plateau...
WV 48.5 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
Morgantown is known as the home of West Virginia University, the inspiration for a Joni Mitchell song and the birthplace of Don Knotts. But it’s also known for its extensive rail-trail system along...
WV 23.7 mi Crushed Stone
The Monongahela National Forest’s Otter Creek Wilderness has many trails, mostly for hiking through the scenic landscape of rhododendron, timber and mosses. Biking is prohibited on the trails, but...
WV 4.2 mi Dirt
The Narrow Gauge Trail in Babcock State Park follows the gentle grade of what was the Manns Creek Railway, which connected Clifftop to Sewell, until it closed in 1956. The trail is breathtaking, but...
WV 3 mi Dirt, Gravel
History beckons around every rocky bend and in every chilly tunnel on the North Bend Rail Trail, which follows an old railroad corridor through hill and hollow in northern West Virginia. The...
WV 72 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The Monongahela National Forest’s Otter Creek Wilderness has many trails, mostly for hiking through the scenic landscape of rhododendron, timber and mosses. Biking is prohibited on the trails, but...
WV 11.8 mi Dirt
The Panhandle Trail offers the most direct and scenic route for self-propelled travel between the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia and the suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Although the trail...
PA, WV 29.2 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The Monongahela National Forest’s Otter Creek Wilderness has many trails, mostly for hiking through the scenic landscape of rhododendron, timber and mosses. Biking is prohibited on the trails, but...
WV 3.2 mi Dirt
Nestled in a remote mountain valley deep in the Appalachians, the Potts Valley Rail Trail skirts a wilderness area and farmland as it rolls through forests for 4.5 miles in the southern part of the...
WV 4.5 mi Dirt, Grass
The Railroad Grade Trail is a rural hiking trail built on a former logging railroad corridor in the Monongahela National Forest near Blackwater Falls State Park and Canaan Valley Resort State Park....
WV 3.2 mi Dirt
In West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest, the Dolly Sods Wilderness features sweeping vistas, spruce and aspen groves, beautiful meadows, beaver dams and rolling creeks. The area is also home to...
WV 6.4 mi Ballast, Dirt
Five old railroad trestles serve as scenic attractions on this dirt trail in the New River Gorge National Park, although one of those trestles has been closed for safety concerns, splitting the trail...
WV 3.2 mi Dirt, Gravel
In West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest, the Dolly Sods Wilderness features sweeping vistas, spruce and aspen groves, beautiful meadows, beaver dams and rolling creeks. The area is also home to...
WV 1.9 mi Dirt
In West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest, the Dolly Sods Wilderness features sweeping vistas, spruce and aspen groves, beautiful meadows, beaver dams and rolling creeks. The area is also home to...
WV 3.6 mi Dirt
West Virginia's Monongahela National Forest offers a wide variety of trails for day or multi-day hikes of varying levels of difficulty, including several trails built on former logging railroad...
WV 3 mi Dirt
Located in the Seneca Rocks National Recreation Area of the Monongahela National Forest—a hotspot for mountain biking and rock climbing—the Seneca Creek Trail is a scenic feast of streams, meadows,...
WV 5 mi Dirt
West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest offers a wide variety of trails for day or multi-day hikes of varying levels of difficulty, including several trails built on former logging railroad...
WV 4.5 mi Dirt
The South Prong Trail is a remote, rugged rail-trail that offers a moderate, though sometimes quite hilly, hike. There are two very distinct sections of this trail—one section is boggy, while the...
WV 5.5 mi Dirt
The Southern Railroad trail occupies part of the former bed of the Harrisville Southern Railroad. The short line railroad was built to link Harrisville to the B&O line at Cornwallis, a total distance...
WV 0.8 mi Dirt
As it weaves past long-abandoned mining towns, the Southside Trail (formerly the Brooklyn to Southside Junction Trail) in the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve tells the story of “King Coal”...
WV 6.9 mi Ballast, Dirt, Gravel
The Stone Camp Run Trail follows an old railroad corridor through a deep hollow on Middle Mountain in the Monongahela National Forest's Laurel Fork North Wilderness. The scenic trail crosses the...
WV 1.5 mi Dirt
The Tea Creek Area Trails system consists of 12 trails totaling 44 miles, many of which follow old logging railroad corridors. The trails are found in the Marlinton Ranger District within Monongahela...
WV 44 mi Dirt, Grass, Gravel
The WV Route 9 Bike Path follows the busy thoroughfare from Martinsburg to the Charles Town/Ranson area. Note that the path runs through open space with little to no shade. While the southern portion...
WV 10 mi Asphalt
The Wellsburg Yankee Trail is a short, paved rail-trail that spans the entire length of Wellsburg, a small city on the Ohio River in West Virginia’s Northern Panhandle. The community trail runs...
WV 2.2 mi Asphalt
Many of the Mountain State’s rail-trails are known for their long grades up mountain valleys, but the West Fork River/Ralph S. Larue Trail is not one of them. The 14-mile trail follows the...
WV 14 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
The West Fork Trail snakes its way through remote mountain valleys for 22 miles in the Monongahela National Forest. The soothing gurgle of the river complements the trail’s serene environment of thick...
WV 22 mi Ballast, Crushed Stone, Gravel
The West Virginia Northern Rail Trail is a 10-mile trail project occupying the former West Virginia Northern railroad bed between Kingwood and Tunnelton in Preston County. The short-line railroad...
WV 2 mi Crushed Stone
Closure Notice: Construction on adjacent highways in Elm Grove may require trail closures in this section through the first half of 2022. Check with the trail manager for the current status. The...
WV 16.5 mi Asphalt
The White Oak Rail Trail runs for nearly 8 miles through the central West Virginia city of Oak Hill, connecting the communities of Summerlee and Carlisle at either end. Most of the trail is paved with...
WV 7.9 mi Asphalt, Crushed Stone
Located in the heart of West Virginia, the Whitmeadow Ridge Trail is also in the center of the Monongahela National Forest. Otherwise known as the Whitmeadow Hunters Access Trail (notice the bullet...
WV 5 mi Dirt
Widney Park Rail-Trail is located in the quiet West Virginia community of Durbin. The old railroad town has a charming Main Street with welcoming shops and restaurants and the rail-trail is located...
WV 0.8 mi Crushed Stone

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Recent Trail Reviews

West Fork Trail

Recently mowed the surface was good. We saw lots of deer. Don't forget good Ice cream in Durbin. There is a good campground there as well that stables horse's. The steam excursion is worth it.

June, 2022 by jmebane7

Recently mowed the surface was good. We saw lots of deer. Don't forget good Ice cream in Durbin. There is a good campground there as well that stables horse's. The steam excursion is worth it.

Allegheny Highlands Trail

Elkins to Montrose. Great condition lot's of wildlife. Don't forget to swing into the speedway

June, 2022 by jmebane7

Elkins to Montrose. Great condition lot's of wildlife. Don't forget to swing into the speedway

Mon River Rail-Trail System

Mon River Rail Trail System

June, 2022 by sln_tl

Have not had one yet, but the experience with the Trail Link map was weird. It takes you to Howland Island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Not looking for Emilia, just a trail head.

Accordion

Blackwater Canyon Trail

This trail is very sweet for ebikers. Awesome hill with awesome scenery. Lots of waterfalls n rock formations. Perfect trail for a hot day due to the many waterfalls and a full canopy all the way.

June, 2022 by lamran

This trail is very sweet for ebikers. Awesome hill with awesome scenery. Lots of waterfalls n rock formations. Perfect trail for a hot day due to the many waterfalls and a full canopy all the way.

West Fork Trail

It's OK not great. Absolutly no cell service

June, 2022 by lamran

It's OK not great. Absolutly no cell service

Panhandle Trail

Be careful - little small tacks on trail (WV into PA) - flat tires

June, 2022 by crableg300

Last year we went to a pancake breakfast in McDonald PA and had a great time. We did a lot of the Panhandle trail and rode over the trestle bridge on the Montour as well. We decided to come back and do the rest of the Panhandle from the WV starting point (Weirton - Harmon Creek) to the town of Burgettstown. We encountered a few bike riders outside the WV part (Washington County) that had flat tires - they showed us these very small tacks. They are very hard to see and you would not be able to see them riding. On the way back, I had a flat too and my brother this morning found one in his tire as well. We have reported this to the Panhandle people and the WV trail folks too. Please be careful - The trail is nice and we got some good pull pork sandwiches at Walden's in Burgettstown. The pancake breakfast was awesome again too - we may make this a tradition each year

Potts Valley Rail Trail

good easy hike

May, 2022 by l.gerryvonville

Hiked alone on 5/21/22, very easy flat trail. My hike started at the SW trailhead to the descent where the railroad tressel was located, rested and returned to car. This area is very isolated, did not see another person on this nearly 3 hr hike. Several reviews complained about how poorly maintained the trail was, my experience was this trail is no worse maintained than most grass/dirt rail trails I have hiked.

North Bend Rail Trail

enjoyed

May, 2022 by dgkrass

From Parkersburg to mile marker 33 they have put down new gravel. In most places it’s been compacted and is smooth to ride. There is some spots of loose deep gravel that will slow you down. In Petroleum there is a covered picnic and bike repair stand with restroom. Past #33 it is still smooth pea gravel and good to ride to #44 that’s as far as I got. I would do it again. The only warning I have is the gates are closed and can be tricky to get around, one person actually took a bad fall trying to get around one. If you don’t feel confident walk your bike around.

Southside Trail

Rougher than the Rend, but closer to Thurmond

May, 2022 by jonesandrewd_tl

I rode this trail today after riding the Rend Trail. Well, I rode the 1.2 miles closest to Southside Junction, at least. There are two basic options for starting on this side. The only way to avoid crossing the tracks is to park at the Rend Trailhead, ride that trail, and carry your bike down the Arbuckle Connector. It's mostly rock steps, not rideable, and thus it's carrying your bike down 300 feet of election over less than a mile. But it avoids the tracks, and is how I got there.

The other is starting either at the Rend Trailhead or Thurmond and crossing the tracks. Today, a CSX crew was welding the tracks on the Thurmond side, and all signals were red as a result, but most days there are likely trails rolling through. Realistically, I expect anyone starting at the north end and traversing the whole length will want to cross the tracks and explore Thurmond, and I didn't see a reason to expect it to be any more hazardous than crossing the tracks near my grandparents' house. Why hasn't the NPS put more emphasis on making an official crossing? That is a great segway into the trail itself.

Between the Arbuckle Connector and the tracks, the trail is wide enough, and directly parallels decades-abandoned track. It's scenic, and in one section there were flowers dropped from trees all along the ground. But it's also not exactly well maintained. I had to dismount and duck my bike under one tree, and lift it over three others (two of them grouped together). It's clear that active maintenance of this trail isn't a high priority, which is likely related to why an official crossing at the southern end hasn't been a high priority.

North of the Arbuckle Connector, the trail narrows into a singletrack, and I eventually hit a lengthy mud patch that I decided was not worth traversing.

You do get some views of the New River that you don't on the Rend Trail, but none that beat what you can get from the pedestrian observation points on the bridge into Thurmond. Overall, if you're starting from the south, the Rend Trail is the better bargain even with the trestle out, at least in the spring. Maybe in August there wouldn't be mud, and the Southside would be more traversable.

I'll also note that despite rating this trail 3/5, I'd still very much recommend a day exploring Thurmond, the Rend Trail, and if time permits the Southside Trail. But Thurmond should be the main draw, not the trails, and given their short lengths and rough terrain, it doesn't really make sense to haul bikes there if you don't already have them loaded onto your car for another destination.

Rend Trail (Thurmond-Minden Trail)

A scenic, but fairly rough, rail-trail

May, 2022 by jonesandrewd_tl

I rode the southern part of the Rend Trail today, up to the second trestle, which unfortunately remains closed due to being "critically structurally deficient". I am not an engineer, but it appeared that the steel substructure under the second section of the deck (from the south end) has slipped from its intended position. Unfortunately, it's probably very expensive to fix something like that in such a remote area.

As for the rest of the trail? It's quite scenic. Beautiful forest and mountain views. Sheer drops off to the east that are steep enough I'd need a topo map to tell you how far they drop, and equally steep mountain on the west side. Coal baron Rend built the trail in 1901-1904 for $350,000, and it's no wonder it cost so much, it's a small wonder the trail exists at all. Many rail lines have small areas that are challenging, more so in West Virginia, but on this one pretty much the whole route would be challenging to build.

Thus, TrailLink is correct that this is, technically, a rail-trail. But the farther you get from the southern trailhead, the less it feels like one. It gets narrower, eventually becoming a singletrack through a short meadow before opening up a bit before the closed trestle. It's also about 240 feet of elevation gain from the base to the closed trestle, which is officially 1.27 miles. The plus side is that you could likely coast most of the way back, but it's definitely rougher than the nice, crushed-limestone covered rail trail you may be expecting if you've ridden the Greenbrier River Trail.

There's also a Church "Loop" trail that you can hike from the Rend Trail, which takes you to the Thurmond Baptist Church, which from the exterior appears to be in fairly good condition for being in the middle of the woods. I put the "Loop" in quotes since I couldn't figure out how to make a loop out of it. It is definitely not bike-accessible, and still has some trees down across the trail from the hurricane last fall.

In summary, this trail is best combined with exploring Thurmond, and perhaps some of the other short, nearby trails. Expect some work but also some nice scenery, and you'll likely ride away happy.

Elk River Trail (WV)

Has potential

May, 2022 by vdeal

We did a 39.1 mile ride on the Elk River Rail trail last Friday and it was decent. TrailLink states that the trail starts at Duck in the north but it is actually surfaced from Frametown to the north. We first checked the trail at Gassaway which the Elk River Trail Foundation Facebook page said it was open to. The surface from Gassaway to Frametown is pretty rough gravel so we skipped that part. We rode from Frametown to Ivydale and back. The trail is surfaced with fine packed limestone gravel and overall is decent. There are drainage issues that have created some small ruts at places but nothing terrible. All the bridges are nicely decked. The Elk River flows alongside the trail and is a pleasant, pretty river. As far as trailside amenities the only thing in this section are two new restrooms. There are no benches, pavilions or such. There is a small store at Duck that was open but we did not stop. At Ivydale we met a state park ranger who said the trail from Harland to Duck was now part of the state park system and they were working on upgrades and indicated benches would be part of that. He also said the trail would eventually extend through Gassaway up to somewhere around Burnsville. The ride was decent but I would not go out of my way to ride this trail - at least not yet. If you're in the area and want to ride, go for it. There's nothing else nearby. Hopefully, improvements will continue and this trail will only get better.

Blackwater Canyon Trail

Great Hike

April, 2022 by kvdk742ffb

I started a hike at Hendricks and traveled north. The trail opens into a great hiking trail after a mile or so of road. There are great waterfalls and vistas along the way. The trip from Douglas to Thomas was my least favorite, not great trail and views, perfectly fine for bikers, but slow going on foot. Then finished with a bite at the Farm Up Table before heading back down to Hendricks.

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