Charlotte Area Mountain Bike Trail Map

Forums Mountain Bike Forum Charlotte Area Mountain Bike Trail Map

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    • #73457

      We need your help creating a map of mountain bike trails in the Charlotte, NC area for display in local bike shops. A few things to keep in mind when selecting trails for the map:

      1. The trails must be legal trails – no exceptions.
      2. The map should include a variety of trails for all skill level riders – from families to hard core pros. We even like to include 1 or 2 greenway / paved paths if possible.
      3. We’re limited to 15 trails per map so only the best trails should make the cut.
      4. Depending on the availability of local trails we may need to include trails up to an hour’s drive from the city center (50 miles or so).

      Once we’ve built the map we’ll mail a laminated color copy to everyone who is able to help via this forum. We’ll also be mailing a copy to each of the local bike shops in the area so let us know which shops to include!

      Here’s the first pass, in no particular order. Let us know which trails to cut and which one’s we’ve left off and we’ll go from there…

      UNCC Campus Trails
      Catawba MTB Park
      Renaissance Park
      Colonel Francis Beatty Park
      Sherman Branch Park
      North Meck Park
      Huntersville Athletic Park
      Poston Park
      Cane Creek
      Beech Spring MTB Park
      Fisher Farm Park
      Pee Wee’s MTB Park
      Itusi @ Lake Norman

    • #73458

      Hey EZ-E, you out there? What’s the news on the Charlotte scene?

    • #73459

      Ok, here’s a draft of the Charlotte area trail map. I’d love some feedback from the locals, particularly with the trail difficulty ratings and the short descriptions I’ve included. What do y’all think?


    • #73460

      Map looks great!

      I would make beech spring at blue – black since most of it is pretty open and there are bypasses on all the stunts.

      Thanks for doing this.


    • #73461

      Good call. It’s been years since I rode out at Beech Spring and I thought the black diamond might be a stretch …

    • #73462

      I am so bummed that I missed your initial forum posts, especially when you called me out – my apologies for dropping the ball. Haven’t been watching the Forums much lately…just checking on the trail updates and status(which I was actually logging in to update today – since we’ve dried out from last weeks rains).

      The map looks great!! I think the concept and layout are sweet!

      I second the motion on Jason’s comment regarding Poplar Tent aka Beech Springs(#9). If you mark Beech Springs as a black, then you would definitely want to do the same thing for PeeWees(#13). Since there are bypasses at both and the technical stuff is optional, but the trails could still be dangerous to a beginner, I would say the blue – black designation is appropriate.

      Here are some further suggestions:
      #7 Huntersville Athletic Park – DELETE…it is not a maintained trail and continues to go downhill. Many better options in Charlotte.

      Harrisburg Short Track – ADD…since it hosts short track race series(criterium style) up to 2-4 times per year and is maintained by the Tarheel Trailblazers. This may be a point of interest for folks coming to for the off road criterium.

      #2 UNCC Campus Trails – While these trails are popular with locals, they are not "officially" blessed trails which you would want to list as a destination. Even though they are not off-limits, local riders keep a don’t ask, don’t tell status on these trails for concern of drawing attention. This is a possible DELETE only for the published map, they can still remain on the website.

      Jetton Park Trail – ADD…while short a short 1mi loop, this is a one-of-a-kind trail which was built with physically challenged riders in mind. The trail was designed to accommodate mountain trikes which are available for use at the "Cycle Path" Bike Shop in Davidson, NC.

      #6 Catawba MTB Park – Recommend modifying the comments to something like this: "Part of the US Nat’l Whitewater Center Complex. Very popular trail with other activities & amenities on-location. $5/car parking fee – call ahead for trail status."

      #5 Anne Springs Close – Recommend modifying the comments: "Singletrack trail network with rolling stretches, rock gardens, bridges, tunnels, $3 per rider fee."

      #10 Cane Creek – Add to comments: …"$2/car fee, $1/bike fee"

      #12 Fisher Farm – Suggestion for comments: "Fast, twisty singletrack with short climbs and technical trail features make this a great trail for riders of all abilities."

      #14 Lake Norman State Park – Add to comments: "Trail Open/Close status maintained by State Park Service"

      #15 Hickory Area Trails – I would remove the Hickory Trails reference if it puts you over the max 15 trails. In their place, I suggest ADD in the Uhwarrie Trail Networks, since I believe the Uwharrie NF trails are planned as a future IMBA "Ride Center" Destination and is also hosting an XTerra race festival in 2008.

      Finally…there is a new trail under construction in the Huntersville area which will have technical trail features(similar to Poplar Tent/Beech Springs & Pee Wees). This trail has not been given the "OK" to make it public yet, but expect this may be published very soon.
      I have an email in to the gentleman who received permission from the local government and is overseeing trail development. With the addition of this trail to the map, it would really make this map up-to-date and would also help with increasing awareness of the new trail. I will try to get some feedback on that trail going public ASAP.

      I hope these suggestions help….Thanks for asking!

    • #73463

      Awesome, thanks for the feedback and updated trail descriptions! Here’s the latest version incorporating all the suggestions – we’ll hold off on going final until we hear about the new trail…


    • #73464

      Perfect! Looks awesome…we could almost connect-the-flags to make a ‘Burning Man’ or a yeti or something!!

      OK…I will follow-up on the last trail and get a response back as soon as I can.

      Thanks for all your work in promoting the area!!

    • #73465

      Yo EZ-E, heard anything yet on the new trail in Huntersville?

    • #73466

      [quote="trek7k"]Yo EZ-E, heard anything yet on the new trail in Huntersville?[/quote]

      I’ve been on the road the past three weeks…had to travel for a family emergency. I do have a call in to the trail coordinator for the new Huntersville trail and I already have the approximate trailhead coordinates.

      Just need to get the OK to publish from the trail coordinator and what the decision is for the permanent name of the trail.

      I really believe that this trail will be a perfect addition to the map since it is brand spanking new, the trail has received the public blessing from the town government, and it will be the only PUBLIC trail in the Charlotte area with a freeride flavor offering all kinds of technical trail features.

      Thanks for hanging in there….as I mentioned, my life has really been upside down for almost a month now.

    • #73467

      No worries EZ, I hope everything is ok with the fam. We went ahead and sent just a few maps but we’ll wait to print the rest when we hear about the new dirt…

    • #73468

      Hey trek7k. I second the motion for excluding UNCC but for another reason. Construction is chewing up those trails fast and parts of it, for the most part, are falling by the wayside as the trails keep being chopped up.
      Reni is undergoing some sad changes as development of the coliseum site eats into the softball side of it. I will still include it but changes are happening.
      Sadly, Poplar Tent is also undergoing changes as the pigtail is gone and the quarry is reclaiming some of the land and some and the trail on that section has been closed (near the gravity cavity). The trails are not cut, just that option is gone now. I don’t know if you were just putting together an info map to show where the trails are at or were actually going to put maps of the trails on what you are doing. Just thought I’d let you know the status of what is going on with the trails. Sherman Branch is slowly growing in length and beatty and Popular Tent have had a lot of work done on them recently and are vastly improved.

    • #73469

      Good news! I heard from the trail sponsor regarding the new trail in Huntersville. He gave the green light to go ahead and show the trail on the map.

      In fact, he mentioned they should be just a few weeks away from having the county Parks & Rec division out to take a final look at the trail and give approval if everything looks good! He agreed this is good timing for the trail to show up on the map your putting together to get the word out that it exists. I’m assuming that as soon as they have the P&R approval that the trail profile will be created on Singletracks. I’m sure just as with the Poston Trail and Fisher Farm Trail in the area, that this trail may start with limited distance but will continue to grow in length and enhancements.

      I am waiting for an email with the planned name of the trail and a brief description for the map. Once I receive, I will PM the trailhead coordinates along with the other details to you ASAP!

      Thanks for hanging in there!

    • #73470

      E, what’s the latest on the new Huntersville trail? Have you had a chance to check it out yet?

    • #73471

      I have the OK from the trail coordinator, he has also since provided the tentative trail name and a description which I will try and get briefed down so that it fits on your map.

      I captured the GPS coordinates which I will forward to you as well.

      One concern I have is the name the coordinator gave me is "Huntersville Mountain Bike Park". He is waiting on the Parks & Rec folks to approve that name. Here’s the deal…there is already a profile out there for a trail at the Huntersville Athletic Park, which is a different location. It is a [email protected] trail and I’d hate to have a great freeride trail getting confused with a trail which is so-so and somewhat in disrepair. I don’t want to hold you up, but I also would hate for you to publish and have the info be changed.

      The good news is that once this part gets finalized, the Singletracks city map will be the most up-to-date map of which I am aware. I’ll keep you posted.

    • #73472

      Any word about the name for the new MTB trail?

    • #73473

      I’ve made attempts to get the final name to wrap this up, but haven;t had any response. I will make one more attempt today. Otherwise, I would just recommend we go with the most reasonable and descriptive name that relates to the location and style of the trail which I’ve heard: "Huntersville Freeride Trail"

      I’ve already forwarded the location and details. I will post out here later today or first thing tomorrow if I hear any response my phone call. Thanks.

    • #73474

      Cool, thanks. Which trail do you think we should we bump to make room for Huntersville Freeride? Here’s what we have now:


    • #73475

      I’m thinking that Uwharrie NF is the one that gets scratched to make room. Here’s my reasoning:
      1. It is the farthest trail in the group from Charlotte
      2. It refers to the entire national forest and not specific trails there
      3. It skews the map…forces you to draw an arrow pointing to the location

      Hope that info helps…
      I put the call in today(Wednesday) and left a message…will let you know if I hear anything. Thanks!

    • #73476

      Keep in mind, too, that you also have Uwharrie on the Greensboro/Triad area list, and it’s always possible bike shops would want to have lists for both areas since it’s only an 1 1/2 hour drive. I’ve driven much farther than that to ride. 😮

    • #73477

      [quote="lmxloco"]Keep in mind, too, that you also have Uwharrie on the Greensboro/Triad area list, and it’s always possible bike shops would want to have lists for both areas since it’s only an 1 1/2 hour drive. I’ve driven much farther than that to ride. 😮[/quote]

      I can understand the point and I’ll be the first to tell you I love roadtrips to trails! I used to drive a 3+hr round trip every weekend when I lived in an area not as "blessed" as ours! Yet, being left with a limited amount of slots for the trail one-pager, I think it’s best to focus on the 15 trails based on proximity to the "Metro Area" since it is an area-specific map.

      While some of the Charlotte trails which are listed don’t compare to Uwharrie based on attritubes such as length or technical difficulty, I think the trails which are listed for the Charlotte area provide:
      1. A wide range to choose from based on rider experience

      2. Some of the shorter local trails have particular characteristics which are important to include more riders tastes, ie- Jetton is designed for trikes, Huntersville Freeride offers more technical trail features(built structures) by distance than any other published trail, Harrisburg is a circuit trail for short-track racing, etc.

      3. More options for the local shop owner to point their customer to great trails closest to the shop. If the customer gets ‘hooked’ then they might go to the Singletracks website for more challenging options farther away or they ask their LBS for more options

      4. I think Singletracks metro area maps should have the most coverage for the areas they summarize. might even find value in sending some Greensboro maps to Charlotte and vice-versa since our areas are so close. So, if there is double coverage on the two maps that’s one less trail recommendation out of thirty possible trails.

      Good points – not trying to beat down your position, these are just some of the considerations I made when trying to eliminate a trail. Looking forward to seeing the final product!

    • #73478

      I think you might’ve misunderstood EZ-E. I was agreeing with you 😃

      I was just saying that if Charlotte area bike shops had any inkling to carry these lists from other areas (maybe the triad) then Uwharrie would already be listed there, and thus wouldn’t need to be listed on the Charlotte map as well. On that note, too, I’m not familiar with the Charlotte trails so I certainly wouldn’t mind seeing stuff in Greensboro for other areas of the state, especially Charlotte (My brother is now a CM police officer, so I can stay with him and make a weekend out of it!)

      The triad area has great trails, but only a few of them, so it makes sense that Uwharrie be included in ours.

      That’s all. Happy riding!

    • #73479

      My mistake! I agree – I think between the two that both maps would give some great coverage.

      I’ve been to Owl’s Roost up there and much of that was because ofmy surfing around on

      Anytime you can make it down to the Charlotte area and want some trail suggestions or would like to ride, just shoot me a PM and we’ll catch up.

      Have a good one!

    • #73480
      "EZ-E" wrote

      I’ve made attempts to get the final name to wrap this up, but haven;t had any response. I will make one more attempt today. Otherwise, I would just recommend we go with the most reasonable and descriptive name that relates to the location and style of the trail which I’ve heard: "Huntersville Freeride Trail" .

      I’m assuming you haven’t heard back so we’re gonna press with the map this week. "Huntersville Freeride Trail" it is!

    • #73481

      I had a vm back that the trail coordinator is meeting with Parks & Rec this Friday, Aug. 8th. I know that’s only two days…I just don’t want this one little issue to continue to jam up all of the great work that you have all ready to go.
      I only held on this long because I assume these maps involve stuff going into print and I wanted to have the most accurate info.

      If I hear anything this Friday, I will post ASAP. But…the "Huntersville Freeride Trail" name is not so far off-base that it wouldn’t be recognized.

      Thanks again!

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