Schaeffer Farms

4.43 out of 5
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↑ 1,700 ft
↓ 1,700 ft
elevation (ft)

Trail Description
About this trail
Good ride. People of all skills levels can be found on this network of trails. The trails are maintained by MORE and Montgomery County National Park and Planning Commision.
added by Guest December 31, 2002
Trail Features
Trail features
  • Lift Service
  • Drinking Water
  •   Night Riding
  • Pump Track
  • Restrooms
  • Winter Fat Biking
Directions to Trailhead
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Trail Q&A
Rider Questions


Q: I have been riding this trail for the past few years. I was wondering if anyone knows if it is legal to ride a dirt bike on these trails. If anyone knows the rules and or regulations for these trail regarding dirt biking please let me know. thank you -Guest

A: im sorry correction

MaBaLa$iK answered on March 24, 2014. Did you find this helpful? Yes | No

Answer | See all 4 answers

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Recommended Trails
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Local Info & Nearby Trails
Trail Check-ins
Trail Check-ins
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Recent Trail Check-ins     (187 total check-ins)
  Ramzy Haddad   17 hours ago
  Ramzy Haddad   1 day ago
  Clint Magers   2 days ago
  MaBaLa$iK   1 week ago
  Dave Stevens   1 week ago
Photo & Video Gallery (55)
Trail Photos & Videos (55)
Reviews (66)

May 19, 2015
Review: Good fun ride. Tree across the path if you take the yellow trail to the right out of the parking lot.

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May 18, 2015
Review: I'm always glad to get back here. Convenient and very well maintained. Once you get used to the connecting trails and where to find your preferred spots/loops, it's really got plenty of terrain to keep the intermediate-level riders (like me) happy - but can definitely see why the more experienced riders knock the lack of technical sections. I'd give it 5 stars except with all the map postings and possibilities for crowds it doesn't give the full, out-in- nature experience I look for.

Similar Trail: Seneca Ridge

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May 14, 2015
Review: Overall, great fun! I caught the mtb bug while on vacation in Oregon last summer, and Shaeffer Farms is the local trail I've ridden for the last year. A few highlights from my pov (47yo, fit, former recreational road biker):

- good variety across multiple loops: flow sections, some challenging climbs, some logs, plenty of roots & rocks, stream crossings, forest, fields, a handful of challenges for more advanced riders (with work-arounds for the rest of us). White, Yellow, Blue, and Green trails all seemed pretty comparable.
- navigation: well marked trails, with maps at intervals. Should be no problem for anyone to find their way around.
- intermediate difficulty: I think the trail definitely falls within IMBA's guidelines for intermediate. As a beginner I found it challenging, but now I ride with more confidence and have way more fun. For those who require big drop-offs, jumps, really steep technical climbs, etc you'll have to go elsewhere - probably Fountainhead's Black Trail.
- two-way traffic: keep your head up... riders might be coming the other way. So far I've had no problems even on busy days - everyone has been polite. Fountainhead is a one-way set-up. Also note - there are occassionally hikers or runners. Again, no problem - everyone's polite - as long as you slow down and give them plenty of fair warning!
- rookie tip: don't over-inflate your tires! I ride a hard-tail, and after a few white-knuckle rides someone finally mentioned I should let some air out. Big difference! I find around 30psi works for me.
- comparable local trail: Fountainhead Green & Blue Trails. I just rode them at Fountainhead. I think Shaeffer has some more challenging climbs, and overall more roots & rocks.

I feel lucky to have such a fun, well maintained trail so close to home. Big kudos to MORE!

Similar Trail: Fountainhead Green & Blue

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April 27, 2015
Review: The common knock I hear on this trail system is that it's not technical enough or too easy. Are there more technical trail systems out there? Aboslutely, but at the end of the day Schaeffer Farms is downright fun and that's all that should really matter right? You can really rip it on these trails and it provides a lot of different terrain and elevation and I've always gotten a good workout here. The only area of Schaeffer that I don't care for is the corn fields. I prefer to ride with roots, rocks and trees and the corn fields have none of these and in the summer the sun blasts you, so I try and push through these areas as fast as possible or avoid them all together.

Will Schaeffer challenge you as a rider? Probably not, but it's still a load of fun, fast, flowy trails.

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March 30, 2015
Review: March 30th 2015 - trails are in good condition and Schaeffer is open for the season!

Similar Trail: black hills / hoyles mill

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March 17, 2015
Review: To update the status of Schaeffer trials, signs at trail heads still say closed. The automated phone # is only offering out of date info as of today. The nearby Seneca ridge trail is open and rides nicely so it is a good alternative.

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January 3, 2015
Review: I would believe this trail to be between intermediate and beginner. It's a lot of fun, and it's long. I've ridden here several times last year and always feel good when I'm done. Lots of loops and once you figure them out, you can spend all day here. It's a good place to ride.

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November 14, 2014
Review: The trail was pretty nice on a freezing cold Friday morning. Many good changes in elevation, and several nice turns. Best of all - - I never saw another person on the entire trail (but then again it was 34 degrees and windy). I thought the trail could have been marked better at several spots where multiple paths adjoined. I actually rode several miles on a trail alongside the Seneca Creek only to find out it wasn't even Shaeffer Farm trail. Oh well, it was very nice too. I definitely like the Expert section of the trail.

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November 11, 2014
Review: I would rate this trail as a 3 but given there are so many reviews that rate this trail absurdly high it needs to be balanced out. Schaeffer Farms is barely an intermediate trail system not deserving to be in the top 100 trail systems in the US. Granted it can be fun, but an intermediate or advanced rider like myself would become quickly bored. Given all the trails I've ridden, I would rank it in the bottom quarter of all trails on my list. That's not to say it isn't fun for the less experienced rider. If you're in the class of riders switching over from road cycling to off road SF can be fun, it's just not that challenging. MORE is an amazing mountain bike organization local to the DC area and they organize weekly night rides on this trail because frankly, where else can you ride in the DC area at night? Nonetheless I must give MORE many kudos for building and overseeing the great trail systems in the area, including SF, but particularly Fountainhead since it's redesign began in 2012. Again, I really hate to give a bad review but there are many more deserving trails. More challenging rides in Maryland would be Patapsco, or better yet Gambrills. If you're looking for the best trail in the DC area, go to Fountainhead. Ride on, and enjoy.

Similar Trail: Wakefield, Fair Hill

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December 20, 2014
Review: I couldn't agree more with the assessment of this trail being overrated. Nice trails but reminds me of the Olympic course - much too smooth and artificial. These trails are the dream of road riders. From what I've seen of MORE trails this is the errant ideal of mountain biking. To each their own but I'll stick to remote, rocky, technical trails. It's not an exaggeration to say that at Schaeffer you could fairly well get by with hybrid tires and to me that's not mountain biking.

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October 2, 2014
Review: This a nice trail and easy to ride, with the exception of a few mtb's that they think they own the trail and everyone has to get out of their way!!!!
In VA mtb's are more friendly and respect each other, so since most trails are a two way, usually the person that stops is the one that as an area of the trail to it, here we had a few people simply ram into us with one of the guys actually having to throw himself in the bushes to avoid something more serious!!!!! Sad very sad!!!!
Otherwise I liked it a lot and the "expert only" area is really cool.
I suggest for anyone to try it, but based on my experience be extra cautious of others!!!!

Similar Trail: Meadowood and Laurel Hill

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Schaeffer Farms MTB Trail 4.43 out of 5 based on 66 ratings. 66 user reviews.
Trail Conditions
Trail Conditions          < / > embed