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Level: Intermediate
Length: 10 mi (16.1 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Network
Elevation: +2,228/2 ft
Total: 185 riders
 

Mountain Biking Middle Run Natural Area

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#2 of 22 mountain bike trails in Delaware
#147 in the world

Well groomed singletrack. Fast and fun when it's dry. If the ground is wet you might want to think about going to another place.
The best thing to do is to get a copy of the White Clay Creek map and fill in the trails at the Trailhead Map for Middle Run.
The Lenape Trail makes a loop around the entire natural area and is a pretty fun loop. Try Following this or just get lost and rip around until you pop back out at the Parking area.

I'll try to explain a decent loop, but it's best to figure it out on your own.

At the trailhead map you will see singletrack to your right thru the field. Take this into the woods and follow it staying to your right until you get to a bridge that crosses Middle Run. After you cross the bridge you will pass a fallen tree that has been flattened on top so you can ride across it. Hang to your left and climb the trail to the top of the hill. Hang right and follow the Double track size trail down around the green water tower. This connects to the Snow Goose trail which consists of 3 spurs all connecting together. I usually hang left and follow it down to the creek and head right along the creek all the way back to the bridge. Cross back over the bridge and follow the way you came staying to the Right as trails split off to the left. This is now the Tri Valley Trail/Lenape Trail. Follow this across Fox Den Road and past Deacon's Walk Spur. You will come to an intersection of two trails. Going straight will pop you out in a development and onto Smith Mill Road. Follow this straight across Paper Mill Road to White Clay Creek State Park. Or to stay in Middle Run hang a Left up thru the field. This is a continuation of the Lenape Trail. Follow it back across Fox Den Road and stay on the Lenape Trail, there are small signs. You will come out on a Dirt road at the turn in to were you parked. Go straight across the road and get onto Double Horseshoe Trail, follow this across Possom Hollow Road down into the woods on the otherside. You can really rip thru here. Keep on the main trail it will meet back up with Lenape Trail. Take the Chapel Hill spur around. At the 3 way intersection hand Left back down into the woods. You will pop out back down at Middle Run across from the Snow Goose trail. Here you can either cross the creek on the stepping stone and follow it back or hang a left back up over the hill on Possum Hollow Trail and head right back to the trail head.

This is a good place to get lost and there is no doubt my trail directions are lacking a bit. There are new trails that are not on the maps so it's easy to head the wrong way. So follow these directions loosely and have fun.

Before you go
  • No Drinking water 
  • No E-bikes permitted 
  • Fat biking allowed in winter 
  • No Fee required 
  • No Lift service 
  • No Night riding allowed 
  • Pump track 
  • No Restrooms 
Getting there
Take Exit 1 off I-95 at stop sign make a Left onto DE-896(College Ave.) toward Newark. Make a right at Chestnut Hill Road intersection there are signs to follow DE-2 East, DE-72, and DE-4. You will go past the UD football stadium. Make a Left onto DE-2/DE-72. Follow DE-2 East as it becomes Capitol Trail. Make a Left on DE-72 /Possum Park Road. Follow this until you can make a left on Possum Hollow Rd. You will see signs for the Park on your Left, turn in and follow to the end to park. There is a detailed map up Middle Run here, the map of White Clay Creek State Park shows the trails but does not name them.
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Middle Run Natural Area Trail map

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@DCshoots2 (on May 31, 2020)
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Rider questions

Q: I was thinking about coming to Middle Run this weekend, Can I do this trail on a hybrid Trek bike?
A: Its doable. More fun on a mountain bike though.

Q: I am thinking about going To Middle Run this weekend. Can I do this trail on a hybrid bike?

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Reviews

  • fesp
    *****

    Many miles of sweet Singletrack. Right off 95.

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  • cleanneon98
    *****

    Amazing, all the trails are well maintained, and super fun. They flow really well in both directions, but expect a fair bit of elevation here as well. Park at the Bird Preserve lot, ride Middle Run, then cross over to White Clay and continue exploring. 30 miles and 3000 feet in total

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  • rmap01
    *****

    The White Clay/Middle Run area is a gem. If you like your MTB'ing on fast and flowy trails with decent elevation change (avg 100' per mile ridden) you'll love this place. It's impeccably maintained. There are different features scattered throughout the park (e.g. skills section, pump track, field rock garden, log piles) to add a bit more fun. One of my favorite places to ride.

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  • fuzzysb
    *****

    This was one of my daily rides when I lived in this area. Now that I live elsewhere I have gained more appreciation for how well these trails flow. Nothing technical, just shits and giggles. We got 28 miles in and there were 4 trails we didn't hit.

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  • bcottrellthompson
    ****

    The whole White Clay/Middle Run trail system seems pretty darn awesome. I barely scratched the surface of what's here and, frankly, I'm a little jealous of Delaware riders and their trails.

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  • HCmtb705
    ****

    Awesome track. Has a few steep uphills, but enough really cool downhills to even it out. Pretty neat technical stuff on the downhills also, most of which consisted of roots and a few rocky parts. There's a few log jumps a bit farther in on the trail, as well as bridges and wood platforms. Would definitely recommend if you're looking for a place to spend a good bit of time.

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  • Nick Hepler
    Reviewing Redd Park:
    *****

    I rode the White Clay/Middle Run system for almost two years and never knew that there was single track here. It's a very small park but worth riding as it has some great trails with a variety of features with flowy fun.

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  • Pitmonk
    *****

    Not my closest trail but definitely my favorite. No matter what you are into there is a trail that suits you.

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  • Lenny R
    *****

    Amazing!, period, I'm from reading pa, I am mo4e than willing to drive an hour and 20 minutes to enjoy the flowy amazing bliss that is white clay/ middle run., keep ur average speed around 8.5-9 and u will fl9w right up every hill here!

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  • Nick Hepler
    *****

    Awesome place! Tremendous variety, everything a mountain biker wants to see. Great flow, rock gardens, berms, log piles, stream crossings, skinnies, sharp climbs, smooth fast downhills. Can't complain about the free parking either. A slight step up skill wise from neighboring White Clay. A must ride for the intermediate mountain biker. Check it out!
    Update: As of October 2017, Middle Run has a new pump track! Definitely worth checking out as it takes our local riding scene to the next level. We can't have these things without community involvement so if you're local please consider giving time to our local club Trail Spinners. Additional features (advanced pump tracks, DH flow lines) are in the works, but they are entirely dependent on the success of this pump track.

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  • roadandmud
    ***

    We got here while the ground was still frozen. Great trails. As the sun warmed up and melted the ice and snow it got unbelievably slick. DON'T RIDE HERE IF IT IS WET.

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  • dann
    ****

    cool place super flowy , with some nice little obstacle here and there including skills coarse. nothing super tough, but fun. mounting a bell on your stem is not a bad idea if you plan to really rip. I've had some close calls with head on's here and there now I have Hope evo 2 hubs so I have some noise about me

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  • dann
    ****

    cool place super flowy , with some nice little obstacle here and there including skills coarse. nothing super tough, but fun. mounting a bell on your stem is not a bad idea if you plan to really rip. I've had some close calls with head on's here and there now I have Hope evo 2 hubs so I have some noise about me

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  • djf500
    ****

    Super fun single track. Lots of flow & very fast. A few cool features (skinny's) scattered throughout. Links up with White Clay easily so not hard to put together a 25-30 miles loop if you want. White Clay Park is super well marked and easy to follow. Middle run, unfortunately is not marked at all so easy to get lost/turned around. That's why I'd say it's a 4/5 instead of a 5/5. Still great fun and even getting lost there is fun!

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  • Mike Hagen
    *****

    Well groomed and fast Single Track. I had an absolute blast at this trail. It Flows extremely well.

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  • fretter34
    *****

    Beautiful place. Nestled in the middle of Newark?? ReALLY?? Love it here.

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  • Mike Hagen
    *****

    Absolutely love this trail. I'm from Central Texas up here visiting the in laws, and our trails down there are no where near this fun. The majority of the trail is shady and cool, ups and downs everywhere. The trail is better maintained then any that I have seen. All of the trail markings are clear and concise. I didn't even need to refer to a map they were so good. Much better then a numbering system, which is what I am used to. Today I went when it was a little wet from the rain yesterday and it was still loads of fun! The only improvement that I would make or could even suggest is to put chicken wire down on the bridges for when there is inclement weather. It will really reduce the slipping on the water crossings. I almost wiped out a few times due to wet wood. Other then that I had a blast! Thanks to the Trail Spinners for keeping the trails amazing.

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  • frogonbike
    *****

    I've been riding Middle Run for 12 years, back to when some crazy rode his dirt bike I there, and it was posted that no dirt bikes ( motorized ) were allowed. I was fortunate enough to see him being arrested for his transgressions. yeah!!
    What you need to know is that you must ride it a few times to figure out the trails, they can be confusing. At one point the same trail goes three different directions, WTF??? If you can figure it out you are doing better than me. The happy part is you may get home for a beer and dinner. That being said it is a great area.
    As for the greater part,there is a semi-collaboration between the State and County. At one point if you are on one side of the creek you are on State land the other side County land. And it is possible to start in The Judge ( Jude Morris StatePark ) ride a loupe here, then come out across Polly Drummond Rd., pass through the yard waste area, or take the trail to your right and head into Middle Run. Here you can ride a couple of advanced/expert trails, Mountain Goat or the Corkscrew. Do as I need to do walk Mountain Goat before you ride it. As for the Corkscrew and me, someday, someday............ I hope.

    After wandering Middle Run one can hit the tunnel and go into Possum Hill State Park, part of White Clay Creek state Park. And into either the Pennsylvania part of White Clay or Carpenter Park ( part of White Clay Creek State Park... confusing I now). And then you ca ride a fair ways into Pa.. Then you have to find your way back. If you ow your way around you could easily do a 30 mile ride all but about3/4 of a mile on trails. The terrain runs from flat to rolling hills widths few steep climbs. There are some rocky parts, a couple of spots that are rooty, beware if it wet the roots are SLICK AND SLIPPERY.
    That's all I have, give the area spin or two, I think you'll like it.

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  • frogonbike
    *****

    I've been riding Middle Run for 12 years, back to when some crazy rode his dirt bike I there. What Ivan tell you is that you must ride it a few time to figure out the trails, they can be confusing. At one point the same trail goes three different directions, WTF??? If you can figure it out you are doing better than me. The happy part is you may get home for a beer and dinner.

    That being said it is a great area. There is a semi-collaboration between the State and County. At one point if you are on ne side of the creek you are n State land the other side County land. It is possible to start in The Judge ( Jude Morris StatePark ) ride a loupe here. Then come out a cross Polly Drummond Rd. pass through the yard waste are, or take the trail to your right and head into Middle Run. Here you can ride a couple of advanced/expert trails, Mountain Goat or the Corkscrew. I need to walk Mountain Goat before I ride it. As for the Corkscrew, someday, someday............ I hope.

    Aft r wandering Middle Run one can hit the tunnel and go into Possum Hill State Park, part of White Clay Creek state Park. And into either the Pennsylvania part of White Clay or Carpenter Park ( part of White Clay Creek State Park... confusing I now). And then you ca ride a fair ways into Pa.. Then you have to find your way back. If you ow your way around you could easily do a 30 mile ride all but about3/4 of a mile on trails.

    The terrain runs from flat to rolling hills widths few steep climbs. There are some rocky parts, a couple of spots that are rooty, beware if it wet the roots are SLICK AND SLIPPERY.

    Ad that's all. I say give it a spin or two.

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