Local Places for a Family Bike Ride

April 18, 2018

Family bike rides make for a fantastic family activity, spending quality time together while getting some healthy exercise as well. It's a great way to unplug and connect with nature and with one another. Here are some wonderful places to ride in our local area.

Paved Trails

Hickory City Park to Geitner Rotary Park - Hickory
A 1.4 mile paved trail connects the Hickory City Park with the Geitner Rotary Park and is a great place for a short ride, run or walk.

Henry Fork River Park - Hickory
A 3/4 Mile loop (If you don't take the cut-through in the middle), with bathrooms on location and covered picnic areas.

Heritage Trail Greenway - Newton
A total of 1.5 miles in length, The Heritage Trail Greenway is relatively flat and provides a nice place to walk, run, or bike.

Morganton Greenway - Morganton
The Morganton Greenway System offers more than 4.8 miles of paved trails, much of it along the scenic Catawba River. Along the trail there are picnic shelters, tables, benches, rest rooms (open year round), playgrounds, fishing piers, canoe launches, a gazebo, observation decks, parks and pedestrian bridges.

Lenoir Greenway - Lenoir
The Lenoir Greenway is spread over approximately 25 acres and entails 5.6 completed miles of paved trailways for outdoor activity, accommodating runners, walkers, cyclists, and skaters.

Marcia H. Cloninger Rail-Trail - Lincolnton
Walkers, joggers, strollers and cyclists use the Marcia Cloninger Rail-Trail to stretch their legs and renew their souls. The trail stretches from City Park to Motz Avenue and is 1.7 miles in length with benches lining the route.

Greenway Trail - Boone
The Town of Boone's Greenway Trail runs from one end of Boone to the other, ducking under roads, meandering along multiple rivers, crossing several scenic bridges, even passing a historic ruin. This fully accessible trail is either paved or gravel surfaced, mostly flat and less than 4 miles end to end.

Off-Road Trails

Lake Hickory Trail System 
- Hickory
A 1.8-mile beginner loop opened in the woods off the Geitner-Hickory City Park paved trail in September of 2017; read our review here. Since then, the system was expanded to also include a 4-mile intermediate loop, a pump track for both advanced and beginner riders, and an advanced jump line for more skilled riders.

Lyle Creek Greenway - Conover
This 1.5-mile recycled concrete trail part of the Carolina Thead Trail System is an excellent location for biking, hiking and natural wildlife viewing, especially bird watching.

Zack's Fork Mountain Bike Trail - Lenoir
Accessible from the Lenoir Greenway, Zack's Fork Mountain Bike Trail is a great 3 mile singletrack experience for beginners.

Jacob Fork Park Woodland Loop Trail - Newton
The Woodland Loop Trail at Jacob Fork Park offers fun and adventure for hikers, trail runners and mountain bikers alike. Intermediate Level Trail is 2.25 miles beginning at the division for bikers or 2.5 miles long starting from the parking lot. A complimentary pump track offers a place to work up to prepare for the mountain bike trail or to warm up/cool down.

Riverbend Park - Conover
Riverbend Park provides 7.8 miles of trails for mountain biking, consisting of Blue trails (more difficult) & Green trails (easy). These trails provide a technical, single lane course for the biking enthusiast.

Fonta Flora State Trail - Morganton
Accessible from the trailhead at Fonta Flora County Park off Hwy 126, the state trail will include nearly 30 miles around Lake James as part of a 90-mile trail that connects downtown Morganton to downtown Asheville. To date, there are nearly 16 miles of designated trail, including six miles around Lake James, for hiking and mountain biking. Read our review here.

Lake James State Park - Nebo
Lake James State Park has 15 miles of multi-use mountain biking trails with terrain suitable for riders of all skill levels. The four-mile Tindo loop is an easy beginner's trail. The 11-mile West Wimba Loop and East Wimba Loop are for intermediate riders.

Rocky Knob Mountain Bike Park - Boone
Rocky Knob is a 185 acre park in Boone, NC, complete with over 8 miles of mountain biking trails, four skills areas, a pump track, an adventure playground and hiking access.

BONUS: Worth the Drive

Virginia Creeper Trail - Demascus, VA
The Va Creeper Trail stretches 34 miles from Abingdon, Virginia down thru the lovely town of Damascus, Va (known as the Heart of the Va Creeper) along the Whitetop Laurel River and up to its highest point Whitetop Station near the NC State Line at Whitetop, Virginia. This former rail bed makes for an easy biking adventure that you and your friends and family will talk about for a long time.

DuPont State Forest - Cedar Mountain, NC
With over 82 miles of recreational multi-use trails, DuPont State Recreational Forest offers mountain bikers ride opportunities ranging from easy forest roads to exciting single track. Be rewarded with sights of a scenic forest, six waterfalls, five mountain lakes and more at the filming location of The Hunger Games.

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