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Tags:
Level: Intermediate
Length: 8 mi (12.9 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Network
Elevation: +688/931 ft
Total: 50 riders
 

Mountain Biking Mill Mountain Trails

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#81 of 285 mountain bike trails in Virginia
#3236 in the world

Park at the Discovery Center. There are 2 nice overlooks into the Roanoke Valley just uphill on a paved greenway from the Discovery Center. Just beyond the entrance to the Discovery Center is a walkway to the zoo. Start down the walkway and Ridgeline Trail veers off to the left in the grass paralleling the road you came in on. All the other trails here can be accessed from Ridgeline. A mile or so down Ridgeline trail, Riser Trail is to your right and Monument Trail is to the left. A nice loop can be made going onto Monument Trail for a killer downhill. When you get to the paved Mill Mountain Greenway go left and up. At the first next switchback take Big Sunny trail back to Riser Trail and finish the loop.

If you go further out Ridgeline Trail it becomes more of an old logging road with some steep stuff. Look for the rock pier on the left. There is a cut across the Fishburn Parkway to Wood Thrush trail. At the present this is an out and back, but still a nice one. Eventually I think the plan is to connect Wood Thrush with Monument Trail forming a totally singletrack loop. Now, Wood Thrush eventually joins the Star Trail and comes out in the Star Trail parking lot on Riverland Road (Rt 116). It’s pretty easy to access the Roanoke River Greenway here (Take a right on Riverland and circle around the power company facility and you are on the Greenway. A new trail called Virgina Pine was recently built off of Wood Thrush. It’s only a half a mile but is oh so sweet and worth the out and back. Star Trail is closed to bicycles. Otherwise a loop to Monument Trail would already exist. The trailhead for Wood Thrush has not been formalized either making these trails a little difficult to figure out the first time, but not too bad. These trails are really well built, drain wonderfully, and are very fast to ride. Hopefully they will add more to make some better loops in the future. The Mill Mountain Park director is a mountain biker himself so I think things will only get better over time. They could easily double the 8-10 miles there now. When my riding buddy first showed me these trails I thought wow, these are here in town and I didn’t even know about them. Most locals still don’t know about them.

First added by CraigCreekRider on Apr 28, 2020. Last updated Apr 28, 2020. → add an update
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Getting there
From Route 220, just South of Roanoke get onto the Blue Ridge Parkway and travel North. At Milepost 120 turn onto the Fishburne Parkway and follow signs to the Mill Mountain Zoo and Star. Access to Ridgeline Trail is right at the Discovery Center and parking is available there too.
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Good (on Jun 22, 2019)
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Mountain Bike Trails Near Roanoke, Virginia

| 6 mi
| 6 mi
| 2.1 mi

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Reviews

  • jamesncasey
    ****

    Great local trail system. Down Monument trail and understory trail from the road are the highlights.

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  • Allgrainer
    *****

    Climb and then climb a little more. Rocky and rooty. Enjoy the view at the star. Head back down Monument Trail, hit a short stretch of road and find the Blue Cow. You deserve it!

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  • Derek Michael
    ****

    Fun downhill on the monument trail! I recommend at least front wheel suspension. This track is very rocky.

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  • Andrew Burton
    *****

    Great trails, well maintained. Lots of options, although what goes down, must come back. Well worth the effort.

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  • byrdsoutdoors
    ***

    Mill Mountain has some pretty fun trail with some great downhill riding but... its take a lot of leg endurance and strength to make the climb back up. We rode 45 minutes up just for 15 minutes of a decent.

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  • *****

    The expert trail I think is the monument trail very fast narrow u go to the righ and u fall off the mountain but it was the most fun I have had in a long time I am only 14 but I have road many of trails and that was my favorite I live in Georgia and I think that this is a better trail than most in Georgia but it was really fun

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  • mtberik
    ****

    mill mtn has good and well built trails includind a fast downhill trail

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  • RoadWarrior
    ****

    Fast flowing well designed trail, even the short trails that connect to neighborhoods are good. Trails are a mix of hand built ST, and old logging roads. Tread ranges from loose rock to hard-packed VA clay. Nothing technical, but can be ridden very fast, good sight-lines through mature forest. Good signage, no chance of getting lost. Nice vista's from the top, and a zoo for the kids. The only real negative to the trails is that to make a loop requires some pavement riding, however most of this is on the greenway, or a very limited access road.

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  • andyd84
    ****

    Just experienced these trails for the first time. This is a great system for those looking to ride from downtown or surrounding areas. Nothing better than being able to hit the trails without having to drive. It was very leafy when I rode, but had no problem finding the trail. Met two riders on the trail who were kind enough to show me the most fluid routes. I recommend riding up the face of mill mountain on the road ( mill mtn greenway), take big sunny, to riser, to ridgeline, go left back up mill mtn rd (back toward the star) just a bit and you will be able to enter on the right side of the road onto wood thrush. Great fun downhill take it down to the parking lot. From there you can hit up the greenway and head back to downtown! www.rvarc.org/maps/MillMountain.pdf This is a great map. unfortunatley you cant ride on all of the star trail ( maybe some day?). Hikers only. That would open this place up. Also heard there are more trails up there around the mill mtn campground that have been ridden respectfully in the past. Not sure of the rules there, but could turn into an even better urban loop. If you are a resident of Roanoke and dont always have time to load up the car, these trails are more than adequate. ENJOY THEM! Great potential and fun as it stands now.

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  • CraigCreekRider
    ****

    I like these trails for what they are, a well built urban trail system with great drainage. Except maybe for spring thaw they are never wet. Monument Trail is one of the best trails in the area with some small but pretty good rock gardens. I would rate these trails as intermediate because of the amount of rocks and the climbing involved.
    This is a great afterwork ride area. My only complaint is the lack of loops. There is a lot of potential for more trails here if park would allow it.

    * Review edited 12/24/2010

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  • MTB82
    **

    This is not an exclusive mountain bike trail, rather it's a hybrid hiking / mountain bike trail. The entrance to it is not clearly marked from the parking lot at the visitor's center - but the map indicates that you have to follow the path to the zoo before you get to the Ridgeline trail.

    The trail itself is promising at its start, with some tight turns, and a decent surface. It is relatively flat (not too many roots, rocks, etc) - even though I prefer some bumps, it was not a big deal for me that this trail is lacking these. However, things soon start to go downhill. literally.

    If you stay on Ridgeline (I did not branch off onto one of the other trails, with which I was unfamiliar), it basically feeds you 1/2 way down the mountain - not much uphill biking at all - really just a relatively smooth downhill decent.

    The end of it comes out onto a street that appears to be part of a neighborhood - I did not see where the trail may have continued past this point, and frankly, I did not want to bother looking for something that was only going to take me further down the mountain.

    Then you have to go back up. And that's it. By the way, the park has several trails - nearly all of which are marked as being exclusive to hikers, with only Ridgeline being "available" to mountain bikers.

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