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Level: Intermediate
Length: 35 mi (56.3 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Network
Elevation: +589/ -581 ft
Total: 96 riders

Mountain Biking Walnut Creek

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#46 of 300 mountain bike trails in Virginia
#1,496 in the world

This is a nice network of trails which has mostly non-technical riding. There are of course a few moderatley technical setions with roots, mud and steep uphills. This is the most popular place to ride in Charlottesville.

First added by searsandrewj on Jan 1, 2003. Last updated Apr 30, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: unknown
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: unknown
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
On 29S go out of town (Charlottesville) and follow the signs
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Walnut Creek Trail map

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Local Info

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Trail checkins

faust41 (on Jul 6, 2019)
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Trail conditions

Good (on Jul 6, 2019)
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Camping & Lodging

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Walnut Creek videos

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Mountain Bike Trails Near Charlottesville, Virginia

Intermediate | 4 mi
Advanced | 4 mi
| 5 mi

Rider questions

Q: can we ride a cross trek instead of a mountain bike
A: I would not try it.

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  • Trouthunter777

    Years of great trails at Walnut Creek Park. These trails began over 20 years ago when trail access was difficult. A beautiful setting with lake and picnic facilities. Tight single track with many interesting features. Some roots and challenging climbs but a great destination. I think the 30 mile estimate of trails is over stated but the 15 or so miles are fantastic

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  • tallboi31

    If you're planning to ride in the next day or so beware..extremely muddy especially around the lake. Decided to try this trail out during a visit to the Charlottesville area. My friend got stuck in the mud and pretty much fell in the lake..lol. In looking at the map, it looks like a nice trail to ride so hopefully I'll have a better experience if I get back when it's dry. If anyone has any suggestions on which trails/loops to ride, let me know.

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  • Captain Steve

    There is a park entry fee of $4.50 per non-county adult resident. The trails are fantastic examples of Eastern foothills mountain riding. There are a lot of climbs and descents guarded with rocks and roots that will prepare you for all mountain riding a 100 miles west. I would not take a beginner or someone lacking the cardio needed for many hills. The trails are well marked with color coded diamonds. This is a solid intermediate bike experience that even more advanced riders can enjoy.

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  • Justin DeLeo

    1st, but certainly not last, visit to Walnut Creek. having just moved up here from the flat lands of Florida and reading the previous reviews for this trail, I was curious to see how me and my beloved 26er hard tail would fare.
    These trails are excellent and have just the right amount of technical short climbs and fun descents to keep you smiling. For me, there was plenty of flow and while I for sure would have been faster on a full suspension and bigger wheels, I had plenty of fun without it. In fact, even though everyone else was on a 29er (I'm used to this :), I saw zero full suspension rigs.
    I had to bunny-hop a rattlesnake down by the creek. it didn't even notice this as it slinked across the trail on the hunt for something, though when I tried to snap a photo, it rattled to me "Not today, buddy."

    Suggest that you go "hydration pack," as you will have trouble taking your hands off the bar to get water. Well worth the $4.50 fee for out-of-county residents/visitors. Has a really nice lake for swimming and an incredible disc golf course. Go ride it!

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  • Machtime

    Very rooty and rocky. A lot of climbing on black diamond sections depending on which way you ride it. Unfortunately no mountain views. Great for training.

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  • J.R. Noble

    Great trails...lots of up and down flow over roots and rock areas that will test your technical skills. The loop around the lake is a fun run.

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  • Lester W. Brown III

    A great mix of terrain and features at Walnut Creek. Climbing on the red loop to Power surge on the dam loop, with a nice dose of roots and rocks throughout. Riding here will teach you the value of being smooth. A great training ground in central virginia with a lake to cool off in after those hot days. Be warned, mobile phone signal coverage is sparse so let someone know you're riding plan or come with a fully charged device.

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  • 3flygirls

    This is one of the more strenuous rides in the immediate c-ville area. It's a great workout and usually takes about 2 hrs to do the 15miles of trails. Steep, technical climbs and plenty of fast descents. Not very flowy. No cell service!

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  • Daniel_Sheets   ✓ supporter

    Very well build and maintained trails with great flow and a few climbs.Only drawback is too many roots exposed and going vertical and diagonal cross the trails.

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  • nghttrn

    This was a change of pace from my usual rides on the VA Peninsula. Slightly disappointed though. Was expecting 35 miles of trails for at least 2 days of exploring, but park only has 14. Why does this site say 35 miles?

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  • Humannature1

    Roots, rocks, and more roots. This is quite a rough riding set of trails. Some fairly technical sections. I walked my bike a few times. Some good climbs. Good trail design, but with such a rought riding surface it was difficult to get much speed on the downhills without feeling like I would lose a dental filling. Other two riders felt the same. Would not go back without a full suspension bike.

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  • trnsprt

    Great Trail network. Thanks to you Charlottesville folks who designed and had this trail impletemented! You deserve a round of applause.

    Nice riding. I wouldn't call it difficult. But there are spots where beginners and intermediates would probably feel more comfortable getting off and walking. Good climbs for cardio, technical spots to hone your skills, a little bit of something for everyone. Beautiful location. I was here in the fall so there was a lot of leaf cover which makes it VERY hard to pick your line. I previously lived out west and it has been very tough getting used to leaves, narrow tree lined trails and roots. But it's coming along. I'm enjoying the challenge.

    You could bring beginners and intermediates here and just stay to the properly marked trails. Just overall a good spot and a great venue.

    Multiple users. Be careful and listen up as there doesn't seem to be a set ride direction so you may here someone coming before you see them. Everything I saw was singletrack.

    According to thesingletracks.com ranking system this trail rates a "very difficult" But please take that with a grain of salt. It's a lot of fun and more intermediate than difficult for sure. But I guess it is a better idea to rank up rather than down for safety's sake.

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  • jneuff

    I was very impressed with the singletrack network here. You just get on the trail and start riding, you are never that far from the main road, and so it is pretty hard to get lost. There were some great short stretches of flowing downhill to be found.

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  • getonthetrail

    This trail has it all, beginner to intermidate sections along with plenty of technically advanced downhills and climbs. We warmed up on the easier trails across the dam then moved to the intermediate and advanced sections, yellow, blue, green and red blazed trails. I enjoyed the technical climbs and downhills, zig-zags of the advanced section (think it was the red). The advanced trails had plenty of roots, rock gardens, tight and twisty, steepness, logs and jumps for loads of fun!

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