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Along the eastern outskirts of Raleigh, the Neuse River Trail follows the river for nearly 30 miles from Falls Lake Dam to the Wake/Johnston County line. There are several river crossings along the way, including two on suspension bridges. The scenic, tree-lined trail offers numerous wildlife viewing opportunities, especially on its boardwalks through wetland areas. Near the trail's north end, it connects to the Abbotts Creek Trail just south of the Bedfordtown Drive parking lot.
On its southern end, the trail connects to the Clayton River Walk, which continues along the Neuse River for 4 more miles. The two trails are part of the East Coast Greenway, a long-distance trail network stretching from Maine to Florida. Just south of Poole Road, the trail also offers a seamless connection to Walnut Creek Trail, which heads 18 miles west through Raleigh.
Drinking water and restrooms are available along the route and are marked on the TrailLink map. Locations with both include Buffaloe Road Athletic Park and Anderson Point Park.
Parking is available at numerous locations along the trail. From north to south, locations include parking lots on Horseshoe Farm Road (2928 Horseshoe Farm Road), by Buffaloe Road Athletic Park (5812 Buffaloe Road), and by Anderson Point Park (20 Anderson Point Drive). View the TrailLink map for all options and detailed directions.
This trail is beautiful and clearly marked follows The Neuse river¿¿
Paved and shaded trail. Perfect for my training runs. Only thing is I have to drive 45 minutes to get here and by the time I get here I have to use the restroom. No port-a-potty in sight.
If you have to ride at 100°, might as well be this trail. It’s pretty shady so if you’re cruising along it’s pretty nice. It’s probably not a beach cruiser trail as there are some inclines, not much to speak of, but probably more than you’d want on a single speed bike. Anyway, we left from Anderson Point Park and did 35 miles round trip to what I think is the northern end and back. The paved trail is in nice shape. Keep an eye out on the blind curves as we saw a couple of cyclists cut the corners a bit tight.
The Neuse River Trail traverses about 28 miles of the Neuse River, although as mentioned for much of it there are trees on both sides. Still, it's not just a 28 mile corridor of trees. There are many turns, a surprising amount of overall elevation gain (though less surprising once you've ridden it), and those thick, tall, lush Southern forests that just don't seem to grow in the North. And the whole way, you could be forgiven for thinking the state capital must be 100 miles away. Most if not all if the trail is in Raleigh, but I may well have seen more buildings along trails in remote sections of West Virginia than on this trail. The Neuse River does have more *people* on the trail... but aside from a few crossings under busy roads such as I-540, it feels impressively remote.
Signage is generally good, but I agree with other reviewers that more signage around where to find amenities would be helpful. I found water and restrooms at the Buffalo Road Aquatics Center, and restrooms at my starting location of the Horseshoe Farm, but neither is visible from, signed from, or particularly near the main trail. For food, I wound up hopping in my car when I passed my starting point in the opposite direction and finding some options a mile or so north along US-401. There may have been bikable options, but I'll never know.
One other note is that the Bike Guy bike shop the TrailLink itinerary mentions is still there, at the northern end of the trail, but is closed Mondays. Since I rode on a Monday, I can't speak to what they offer.
Overall, this trail makes for a good centerpiece of a trip to Raleigh with a focus on cycling, and between it, the American Tobacco Trail, and Raleigh's other "creek" trails, I think it's quite feasible to make a very good cycling-centric trip to the area. However, if you're looking purely for a super-scenic touring trip, the rural options to the north - Virginia Creeper, New River Trail, and Greenbrier River Trail - are yet more scenic.
We started our ride at the grandly named Falls of Neuse. From our parking spot atop the Falls Lake Dam, we walked our bikes down a steep dirt path to the northern trailhead. There, the Neuse River Greenway Trail extends 27.5 miles south on a paved surface that zigzags alongside and occasionally, over the river.
We were immediately struck by the beauty of this trail; the near-constant view of the water and the alternately lush forests and bright sunny fields. The rolling pavement and the wide grass aprons were well-maintained and white railed fences lined many of the sharper turns on the trail.
The Neuse River trail is part of the larger Mountains-to-Sea hiking trail that extends across the entire state of North Carolina. It’s also a popular tubing area and we could hear the sound of rafting parties (and partiers) drifting lazily down the Neuse. At times, we had a clear view of the tubers from the bridges that spanned the river – including the shortest extension bridge we’ve ever seen.
The trail skirted the edge of only a few neighborhoods and there were neither any intersections, nor places to buy water or snacks. Midway, we took a water break at a large beach-like area where swimmers and picnickers could be seen on the far shore of the river.
After this really enjoyable ride, we drove to downtown Raleigh where we'd heard there was a great bike-themed brewery.
I rode the entire Neuse River Trail (and a bit of the Clayton River Walk) over Labor Day 2021. I started at the Wake Forest trailhead and ended a little past mile 30 in Clayton. I'm used to riding on rail trails that while flat and easy to ride offer very few turns or elevation changes. The Neuse River Trail offers many curves, multiple small elevation changes and just one road crossing (a very quiet country road) along its almost 30 mile length. These constant changes make the Neuse River Trail an exciting departure from my usual rail trail rides.
The trail itself is entirely paved and in immaculate condition. Possibly one of the best paved trails I've ever rode on. There are mile markers every quarter mile and the trail has very clear signage to take one of the many turn offs to a parking lot, a development or even another trail.
My only criticism is that there is only one or two obvious points to get water/bathrooms/something to eat (one being Anderson Point Park). I'm sure there are more options down one of the many turn off points but it was not obvious to me from the trail. Another point of concern is trail etiquette, I did not have any close calls but many cyclists would quickly pass me (I was averaging in the low to mid-teens) without calling out sometimes around some curves. This trail will require your constant attention due to its many curves, slopes and sometimes inconsiderate riders but I found it to be one of the best rides I've taken in a long while and highly recommend this trail.
Started at Anderson Point in east Raleigh and rode south down past Battle Bridge Rd tunnel - which is pretty cool in itself - and then turned around, ate lunch back at Anderson Point and then rode north. So two out-and-backs from Anderson Point. Rode 27 miles in all.
Not a lot to see, it’s about 30 ft from the water with a tree line blocking the view, but it does have some great bridges and the paved trail is well kept
Visiting the area and discovered this trail. What a fantastic trail this is. Scenic, safe, great condition people using it were friendly and it was not crowded. Can’t wait to ride it again when I am back in the area
I really got into biking a few months back and have already come to realize how fortunate I am to live less than ten minutes from this trail. It has become my go-to place for riding, as I usually hit it two or three mornings each week and then go for a longer ride on it once almost every weekend.
Thus far I have ridden about 20 of the northernmost miles of the trail; I park near the trailhead by Falls Lake and head south from there before turning around and heading back. One of the things I've really come to appreciate about this trail is that it has virtually no street crossings. The only one I've hit is at Anderson Point Park, and even there you only have to cross the entrance to a seldom-used parking area.
The Neuse River Greenway Trail is beautiful and features numerous scenic crossings back and forth across the river. It is well-maintained, clearly-marked (with mileage markers every quarter-mile) and offers many areas to stop and rest, including some with restroom facilities. It can get a little busy at certain points on the weekends, but users are generally friendly and courteous and I've never found it too crowded to ride at the pace I want.
An added benefit is that the trail offers connections to numerous other trails that are part of Raleigh's excellent and frequently-expanding greenway system, including the Walnut Creek, Crabtree Creek and Abbotts Creek Trail. Once I reach my goal of riding all 27.5 miles of it, I look forwarding the exploring these connected trails.
I rode 30 miles on Neuse River Trail today. It’s a beautiful, scenic ride. I ride it frequently and it’s never crowded, but it’s always nice to pass walkers, other cyclists, runners and strollers.
I did a wonderful 20 miles on the trail today. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It rolls slightly and crosses the river a couple of times, giving some nice vistas. People were friendly and respectful. My single complaint is that the signage could be better. There are places where multiple trails cross and there are posts with signs the size of index cards to tell you which turn off is which. I had to stop three times (I'm not a native) to make sure I was going in the proper direction.
Great trail, have been going for years. To the man who made my day and said hi today on the bridge, thank you, hope to see you again!!
I rode theTrail in September I would give it a 10 star out of 10 stars real fantastic trail I love the trees the pavement the scenery and I own a bike shop in Wisconsin . A lot of the trails in my area are not paved this trail is well maintained and paved . I can’t wait to go back to this trail again in the near future .
As a former volunteer under the auspices of The NRPD I’ve ridden this Greenway many times end to end. Not a security risk but suggest ride or jog in pairs for enjoyment. Be aware of children and strollers and prepared to stop on busy weekends. Even in hot weather trail has many mature trees for cool shade ,be aware of possible loose large branches on windy days,wear a helmet!. The prettiest and perhaps most challenging/exciting is the section from Anderson Park S. Plenty of parking on either side of bridge entering park. But entrance to trail hidden by cedars down on left 2nd entrance,nearest white cottage, once youve ridden you will always find it,caution returning cyclists ride fast on exit ,be vigilant,wear bright clothing to be seen. Restrooms at Anderson last on trail until Garner! My favorite section is Anderson Park S. to Mial Plantation ,lovely sweeps and downhill runs ,countryside resembles Vermont with long white fences. This is the quieter section .triathlon rider groups on weekend s prevalent. There are numerous benches for a picnic along the way. Come prepared . Near “Riverside subdivision past Johnson County line theres a bridge with picnic tables at each end and on bridge ,nice in fall weather and occasional bald eagles can be observed.
I spent two days riding the Neuse River Trail in Raleigh NC. It is 27.5 miles long, so yesterday we did 13 miles on the tandem from the north end to what appears to be a bridge out making it a 26 mile round trip. No where on TrailLink nor North Carolina's website was any mention of the closure and I understand from speaking with some cyclists it has been closed since November. Today I did the rest of the trail solo on my gravel bike with road tires from the south end to the same closure point.
This trail is amazing. It is near the outskirts of Raleigh and has no significant road crossings. The pavement is the best surfaced trail I have ever ridden on. It twists and turns and has elevation changes, lots of wooden bridges for many crossings of the Neuse River and two trail specific suspension bridges. It is mostly through scenic wooded areas as it follows the Neuse River. It is just an amazing place to ride and it connects with many other trails including the Walnut Creek Trail I rode earlier in the week. One note of caution, there are stone azimuths at the connections to many of the parks along the trail. The stone is very smooth, almost polished. It rained last night and my tires were wet and I made a save beyond by bike handling abilities when both tires tried to slide out from under me when I hit one of these in a turn. I rate it 10 gears on a ten speed cassette.
Raleigh can be proud of this trail. I was on a long driving trip and got here on a very nice spring day. I parked at Anderson Point Park, which has full facilities, a few trees for those lucky enough to find a parking space, and great for people-watching. Joggers, seniors out for a walk, young adults with baby strollers, casual cyclists.
Even with this variety of users the trail was not crowded on a weekday. I was concerned that being in a big city I would see groups of very fast cyclists dominating the trail, but no. Maybe a weekend morning would be different.
The trail south from Anderson Point Park was beautiful. Wide, up and down but the hills were never too steep or too long. Practically no street crossings, even after it became the Clayton Riverwalk. Rode it to the abrupt end in Clayton. On the return, took a side trip down the Walnut Creek Trail until that became more urban. I would have liked more places with restrooms, picnic tables, and shaded places to sit. Besides Anderson Point Park there were trailside benches and some random tables in the sun along the Clayton Riverwalk, and a large city park where I turned around on the Walnut Creek trail.
Next time I will want to see the trail north of Anderson Point Park. If it continues as a riverside trail away from the noise and crowds of the city, it will be another great experience.
Our group of 5 old guys spent 4 nights in a rental home in Wake Forest. We had a direct trail connection to the Neuse River Trail(NRT). it was our second trip to the area and once again the biking did not disappoint. This is one of the best rails we have ever ridden. Extremely well maintained, scenic and fairly level with some short climbs and descents.
We parked at Buffaloe Rd Park and headed north to US1. Then turned around and went south almost to I-495/Crabtree Trail. 28miles roundtrip. Trail was in good condition, and shaded most of the way. It runs along the river with lots of good scenery. Water and restrooms at Buffaloe Rd park. Tip: this is not a rail-trail, so there are lots of ups and downs, bridges and turns. Will return another day to do the southern half, Crabtree and Walnut trails. Raleigh is fortunate to have such a nice trail system.
Always lovely! I went on a portion of the trail that I had not been on and was not disappointed. I love the bridges and view of the river!
I have ridden the northern part ( the Neuse Dam to/from the WRAL soccer fields , about 7 miles ) several times. Always beautiful ( even on rainy drizzly days ); always clean; always well marked with signage. Smooth wide pavemet. Along a river with lots of shade from trees.
Awesome! We started at the south end in Clayton and picked up Sam's Greenway and rode north connecting to the Riverwalk and on to the Neuse Trail for a 18 mile round trip. It is beautiful and recently paved surface 8-10 feet wide and flat until you leave the river valley around the water treatment plant. It is mostly shaded along the river. A slow switchback climb (3-5 minutes) to the brownfields, where you're in full sun for about a mile, rewarded us with a fun downhill on the way back. We passed over multiple wooden bridges and two large spans across the Neuse River which gave great views up and down the river. We never had a road crossing in our 9 mile route! All the crossings were below road grade under bridges.
This trail is a must if you are traveling the I-95 or I-40 corridor, the Clayton trailhead was about 40 minutes from I-95 from the North and closer if coming up I-40 from the south. We split our car trip in half to ride this trail and spent the night in Clayton/Garner off NC-42 and I-40 about 10 minutes from the trail.
Can't wait to do it again!
Beautifully maintained trail with many bridges and trestles. The feeder trails bringing in suburbanites and city dwellers is a terrific idea. My wife & I thoroughly enjoyed our ride from Buffaloe Road Athletic Park to Auburn Knightdale Road and back. Met some friendly folks along the way.
This trail is such a gem to our area. I doubt very many people even know that it exists! LOVED the numerous boardwalks and bridges and enjoyed being in such a beautiful setting on such a magnificent day. We saw lots of Canada Geese in the wetlands along with a slew of turtles and I imagine the wildlife is endless if you visit at the right time of day. I had not ridden a bike in nearly 35 years and found the entire trail welcoming with lots of long runs. There were several uphill climbs but, once I figured out how to use the gears correctly (!!), it was not that difficult. We were so happy to see so little trash around and it is obvious that these trails are well maintained. We started out at the Mingo Creek Trail in Knightdale, which emptied into the Neuse River trail and took that as far north as Anderson Park. We then backtracked and ended up near the Poole Road bridge. It was amazing how quickly we got around the area on this series of trails. It took a lot LESS time than if we had been in an automobile. TOTALLY enjoyed this adventure and plan to cover more of the trails in the near future. Took lots of pictures and look forward to adding more to the collection!
I'm visiting the area from Cape Cod, MA.
This is positively one of nicest bike trails I have experienced. ( I'm 72 years young)
I rode the trail over two days and covered it from end to end twice.
It is very clearly marked with mileage and intersecting road information. The pavement was smooth as silk. Tons of areas to get off the bike and view nature at its finest.
One of my favorite sights during the ride was coming around a curve and came upon a baby fawn grazing on the grass ahead of me. We were about 50' apart. He (she) was curious as to my presence, but kept on feeding and slowly walked back into the woods. I'm sure MOM was within sight somewhere.
This trail positively attracts visitors form around the country. I chatted with folks from Canada, California, Key West.
Who ever manages this trail should be proud of this asset for North Carolina and Raleigh.
I'm vacationing from Cape Cod Massachusetts.
I cycled the trail from Buffaloe Rd. south.
This state does an excellent job of designing, building and especially maintaining their natural assets. Who ever manages this trail is worthy of praise. We have many bike trails in Massachusetts, but they (we) build them and forget them for the most part.
The only thing I might think of adding would be to add additional signage for people who may want to visit local business establishments for beverage and or food.
Keep up the fantastic effort,,,,, we WILL return to explore your numerous trails.
Very nice, long, paved trail! Will definitely be coming back for more long rides! Got in 55 miles no problem and most importantly no stopping for traffic!
I rode the section of trail from Anderson Point north while visiting Raleigh and was impressed with the trail itself, the scenery and the friendly people I met on my ride. What a gift to have a safe, scenic trail like this that's accessible and convenient.
I rode this trail 3 days over the Memorial weekend holiday while visiting family. I can not say in enough words how much I enjoyed this trail! Everyone one I met had the same feelings about the trail. I must congratulate everyone involved in the planning and construction of the Neuse River Trail.
This gives me another reason to drive down from the mountains and visit my family more often ;-) I wish the Asheville area had a trail this nice.
I've taken my bike out on two sections of this trail so far: from the northern most end at Falls Lake Dam down to the WRAL soccer complex, and from where it meets the Mingo Creek Trail (Greenway) up to the Buffaloe Rd athletic park. I found the portion from the Mingo Creek Trail to Buffaloe Rd more interesting.
While I liked Falls Lake park, once you start riding on the trail, I didn't really find the scenery that interesting. If you like being isolated amongst a lot of trees, you'll like this part of the trail. There was one spot where the trail branched off slightly to let you go right down to the banks of the muddy Neuse River, which I didn't find especially scenic, but perhaps my viewpoint is somewhat jaded by my experiences with the majestic Hudson River back in New York. The Neuse, in comparison, seems more like a creek than a river. Once I got down to the WRAL soccer complex, I found a Kona Ice truck for a treat before heading back on the trail.
The portion from the Mingo Creek Trail up to Buffaloe Rd athletic park was much more interesting. The trail goes past Milburnie Dam, which you can get a better look at either by crossing a small bridge, or by walking a short path through the woods from the trail. I also noticed some nice houses along the banks of the Neuse River at one point, before the trail takes a turn and goes over a swampy area. There were a few bridges to cross on this part of the trail, including an impressive suspension bridge over the Neuse that was created just for this trail. If you venture off the trail into the Buffaloe Rd athletic park, you'll find restrooms and a water fountain near the entrance to the park (farthest from where the trail enters the park).
A great piece of nature for ALL AGES!!! A great trail for all activities: biking, rollerblading, hiking (even if paved), running, nature observing (Awesome bogs), bird watching, kayaking/canoeing, Fishing, and more!!! The best part is the fact that the paths are so wide!
I rode the trail from anderson point to the end. Makes a big difference with the horseshoe connector completed. Did not have to go on 401 to get to the other trail. Great Trail and nice scenery
Being a recovering heart patient and unable to make rehab because of irregular work hours, I decided to embark on my own fitness program centered on the Neuse River trail. I started walking on the Sam Branch greenway in Clayton since I live in that town. I then started jumping north from parking lot to parking lot and thought, Wow I could bring a bike out here and really get in some good workouts. I have been riding the trail in 6-10 mile sections, Truthfully from Anderson Point south is absolutely beautiful. It is also more Challenging for the rider with numerous hills and long uphill sections especially when riding north. North of Anderson point the trail softens into a very nice ride although the scenery is a little more generic. I love the long boardwalks through the wetlands. The suspension bridges are also interesting features. I have 12 more miles to go to reach the Falls Lake Dam which I will attempt as soon as the weather warms. then I want to do the whole trail from Falls Lake to the Sam's Branch parking area about 30 + miles.
Smooth well-kept roadway, beautiful views, bridges and rolling hills. Well done Raleigh and NC! This Greenway is a jewel. My only issues are the lack of watering stops and that the roadway is not connected after the 7.5 mile mark with no warning or directions on where to go to connect to the remaining 20 miles. Being a long-distance rider. I rode the the 7.5 miles back and forth three times to get in 45 miles. Still was very pleasant. On my next visit two days later, I began at the 8 mile mark, riding the Greenway 25 miles to its end. My best five mile segments were around mile 20 and the last five miles in Johnston County. I live in NE Florida and get to ride on a bike lane along the ocean for over 25 miles with ocean views most of the way, so I am not impressed too easily. This Greenway will be an annual visit for me as long as I am pedaling.
Beautiful scenery! Well maintained! Great for recreational or fitness activities with the family. Wish it was in my backyard.
I ride from my house to the middle of the north side of the trail and ride up about 6 miles to the beginning which is the Dam. Then I rode to the end which is almost at clayton and clocked 59 miles last Sunday. What a great ride and trail riding distance from my house. I can't wait for the horseshoe to be completed so you don't have to ride the street to the other side of the trail.
Awesome job on the trail
My first visit it was riding 12.5 miles each way which is enough to be pleased and excited. Paved in the entirety, mile markers at 1/4 mile spacing, following the Neuse River proper and lots of swampy bits that constitute the wetlands. It's a greenway so there are hills, not tough ones really, curves, and lots of bridges. Spur trails every which way. Passes through a park which offers the only current His&Hers facility, somewhere near midway. A spur to the Buffaloe Athletic fields will also have facilities and parking.
I drove up from Moore County to ride this trail. Since I made a 1.5 hour drive I felt I had to get my monies worth and I rode from Clayton's Sam's Branch Trail to the proximity of Horseshoe Farm Park where the trail ends (for now). About a 51 mile round trip. I thought it was cool how the trail follows the river then climbs up to an agricultural area then back to the river. Very scenic. The bridges and trail surface are first class. As mentioned before, the only place along the trail to get water or use a restroom is Anderson Point Park. Looking on the map there may be facilities at Buffaloe Road Athletic Park which you can access by a spur trail. Good job Raleigh. I really enjoyed the trail and look forward to riding up there more.
Nice Trail. I rode from Anderson Point Park to the end at Clayton which is 15 miles one way including the clayton riverwalk. There is more scenery in this section but all of the neuse is very nice trail to ride
Starting the trail at anderson point park follow the signs to the scenic trail and it will lead you to the neuse trail.
The Neuse River Trail continues to get better and better. All that remains is a small connection at Horseshoe Farms. A great deal of attention was paid to the design of this trail. It is visually appealing and there is an abundance of wildlife to be seen, especially near evenings so don’t forget to bring along a camera.
I ride this trail very frequently and have yet to become bored with it. Due to its length you can split it into different segments for weekday rides. Although the trail can get quite busy, the majority of activity is closer to the parking lots so once you leave them behind the traffic dwindles.
The only negative thing that I could say about this trail is the lack of restrooms and water. Other than that it makes for a beautiful outing no matter how you travel on it.
This is a great addition to the Raleigh Greenway Trail System. Enjoy!
I have now ridden the entire completed sections of the Neuse River Trail from Falls Lake dam to Clayton, NC. The trail is completed except for a short section between the soccer fields off Perry Creek Road and just north of US 401. You can ride the entire route by making a short detour onto Perry Creek Road and US 401 to the parking area at Trail Head Lane.
I am very impressed with the trail and it is better than I ever expected. The trail is entirely paved (about 10' wide), with numerous bridges and boardwalks over the Neuse River, tributary creeks and wetlands. The route is very scenic with numerous places to stop and rest, take photos. A few things to keep in mind. The only permanent place to get water or use a restroom is at Anderson Point Park, although there may be a few porta-johns left for construction crews in places. In other words, bring some water. I also would recommend using a bell on your bike because there are already quite a few walkers and runners on the trail, usually wearing headphones and oblivious to cyclists and others.
Except for the detour at the uncompleted section near US 401, you can ride the entire trail without having to cycle on a road. When that section is completed by early 2014, you will be able to ride the entire way with no roads.
The Neuse River Trail now continues past the Wake County line into Johnston County, through Clayton, connecting with Clayton's Sam's Branch Greenway. Distance from the Wake County line to the Sam's Branch parking area is about 4.5 miles. There is also now a parking lot along Covered Bridge Road where it crosses the Neuse, and another at Mial Plantation Road.
This is a great trail that I can ride directly from my home in Riverwood Athletic Club, now a total round-trip distance of about 31 miles! I'm looking forward to being able to ride all the way to Falls Lake. The scenery along the Neuse is exquisite, with abundant wildlife and beautiful fall colors. Though the trail is well-used, especially on Spring weekends, it never seems crowded. (Sometimes the parking lots do fill up.)
The Neuse River Trail is a 33 mile project. Clayton's 5 miles are already done, and Raleigh's 28 miles are rapidly nearing completion (2013-14). It is becoming NC's longest paved greenway.
I walked the trail from mm17 to mm14. It is wide and paved. Clearly marked and you can pick up other trails while on the Neuse River. I recommend parking at the lot next to the Anderson Park (before the bridge). It has ample parking. Most of the trail is completed. Now they are working on the section that goes into Johnston County. There are signs clearly marked that brings you to the Neuse River Trail Parking. Next time I plan to bring my bike and ride the trail.
I used to love this trail, but now it's just alright. I think people get the wrong ideas for these "greenways" when they start paving it. If you want to walk on asphalt or concrete, go to the sidewalks. This trail was previously crushed gravel, and about as smooth of a trail as you would possibly need. But whatever, it's still got a nice view at least.
This trail runs behind my neighborhood and it got me back into biking! So much wildlife can be seen while riding along like deer, rabbits, various birds, turtles and the like.
As of now (winter of 2011/12) this trail is closed presumably so that can pave it and from what I understand it will be open in spring. I rode it when they started the clearing just before they closed it off, and it looks like they are blazing a short cut that will eliminate a grueling hill but also takes you right by an rustic old stone built hydroelectric dam! Driving on Business 64, I look down from the overpass and check on the slow progress.
Anderson point is another great place to see on this site esp in spring. A lot of the park is allowed to grow tall as a bird sanctuary
Segment 1 of the Neuse River Trail is now open! This segment begins at Falls Dam and continues to the WRAL Soccer Center. Well worth the wait. Fall is the ideal time to experience the trail with fall colors, active wildlife and cool comfortable weather.
The Neuse River Trail is planned to be a 10-foot wide asphalt path extending from Falls Lake Dam to the Wake County line. The project is separated into smaller sub-projects that are planned as individual construction projects. The trail that begins at Falls Lake Dam and will extend along the river to the Wake County line, a distance of 28 miles. The estimated cost for the entire project is approximately $30 million.
The 6 separate projects are named Upper Neuse, Neuse Horseshoe Bend, Neuse Buffalo Road, Neuse Hedingham, Neuse Riverview, and South Neuse which are more fully described on separate pages.
This unique project also opens opportunities to adjoining communities to connect to this central backbone. With the completion of the 28 mile trail and the construction of two other trails, Mingo Creek in Knightdale and Smith Creek in Wake Forest the Capital Area Greenway could become the central structure of a larger system covering North Carolina. The Mountains to Sea Trail (MST), a State of North Carolina linear park, extends from the mountains in western North Carolina at Murfreesboro to the coast of eastern North Carolina at Jockey’s Ridge. The corridor for this trail connects to the Neuse River Trail at Falls Lake Dam. The planned MST then follows the Neuse River Trail through Wake County to the county line.
George Randy Bass
Wake Forest, NC
I pass the turn off for this trail twice a day and decided to take the dog for an exploratory walk.
The start of the trail is part of the Anderson Point Park. Before you get to the main park area, there is a smaller parking lot, denoted with canoe launch signage. From the parking lot, the pathway forks. To the right is a short, downhill walk to the canoe launch. Definitely nothing fancy, just a low spot to the river. You can not launch a boat on a trailer here, which would keep out a lot of boat traffic.
To the left is the start of the Neuse River Trail. Currently, it is the width of a car lane and, in fact, looks just like that. Graveled after a fact, but easily walkable. A mountain bike would have no trouble on the trail. So would any bike but a street bike. The trail is still a little too rough for a straight street bike.
The trail itself is fairly flat. There are a couple of low hills, but nothing the kids couldn't handle. Once you get about 1/4 mile into the trail you can start seeing the river through the trees. There are a few 'unofficial' paths down to the river which is full of big, flat rocks. Definitely a temptation for some off-trail exploring.
While I didn't get all the way to the end of the trail, I covered 80% of it. They were doing some work on the trail while I was there. The trail has a couple of benches along the way to rest. Even though the trail goes behind some housing developments, with a couple of exceptions you would not know. Traffic is another thing. Although you are not directly impacted by traffic, the trail does go under a couple of main bridges. It is really interesting to be standing on a tree shrouded path and look up and see 4 lanes of cars going overhead.
I passed an older gentleman who stated he walks the trail 2 times a day and is looking forward to having the pathway paved. The currently pathway is clean, level and the sides are kept mowed down. Next time I will pack a lunch and water for the dog and I and walk the whole trail. I know it comes out close to my house and want to see exactly where.
This is a definite must walk or ride.
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