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virginia Beginner/not all-rock trails near Northern Va

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Greetings TT,

    My brother is visiting me next week, and we want to do some riding within a couple of hours of northern Virginia that a beginner Moto rider can handle (and have fun)    I tried the Cove near Winchester (In Gore Va), but it is mostly one rock garden after another on the main orange trail, as well as the upper Blue and Violet trails at Taskers Gap in Edinburgh that were also mostly rocks, with rock gardens being more difficult than the Cove where water had washed through.  Although I could ride these trails on my Moto, to me the more intense first gear clutch slipping/engine stalling rock gardens were not really beginner friendly nor much fun.  The rock gardens were just too frequent for my taste.    With that in mind, the Peters mill trail out and back easy trail was beginner friendly, but I would like more variety for my brother.  We are planning three day trips to ride.  

   As a side note:  Maybe this past year’s record rains exposed a lot more rocks on the trails, because they sure do not look like the ones that I’ve seen in pics/videos from earlier years.

  So - I’m looking for recommendations for trails that just have occasional rock gardens, and that would be beginner friendly not to far from Northern Va.   Willing to drive to West Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania to get to some decent trails.  Not sure if New Jersey would be within a decent commute, but will entertain almost anywhere that is within four hours of Leesburg Va.

Thanks in advance for your help,  Greg

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Posted (edited)

Greg,

I would take a look at AOAA - well worth the drive.  Not hard to get to from Leesburg - come straight up Route 15 to Frederick, Maryland and then travel North on Route 15 to Harrisburg, PA.  At Harrisburg take Route 81 North.  You could come back to Harrisburg for a Hotel (around Bass Pro Shops) or there are others along the way.  I live in Maryland near Mount Saint Marys College - north of Frederick, MD.  Its about 2 hours for me to go to AOAA.  I take my kids up there to ride  (daughter has a Honda TRX250X, son has a Kawasaki KLX140L and I have a Yamaha YZ250FX) — 6500 acres of trails for all levels.  Attached maps show the areas.  There is an Eastern side and a Western Side. Look on Youtube for AOAA trail ride videos (some below are easy to follow on the maps) - many you can follow on the maps if you follow the riders out of the parking lot.  If you get into a tight spot with a lot of rocks just turn around.  There are plenty of wide open trails as well as some double and single track trails. Occasionally you can make a wrong turn - stay away from the more difficult marked trails.  The mapping system is more geared towards ATVs so even some of the green trails can be tricky on a dirt bike.  No matter where you are if you find a Pink sign with a Black arrow - follow it to get back to the parking lot.  AOAA isnt open every day yet so check out the schedule on their website http://www.aoaatrails.com/about/aoaa-calendar.  Bring a change of clothes - there are areas of mud throughout.  Keep to the edges on most - they have jeep rides up there all the time and some of the mudholes can swallow your bike.  Suppose to get hammered with rain the next few days so I’m sure it will remain wet in areas for a while.

 

 

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Edited by R1peacock

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Are you looking for trails - or would tracks work?  Which part of NOVA?  Depending on where you are at it's 3 hours to get across town.

Tomahawk 

863 Tomahawk Run Road
Hedgesville, WV 25427

 

Ivyhill Mx I hear is pretty amazing  https://www.ivyhillmx.com

Southfork in Richmond http://www.southforkmx.com/

It really depends on where you are at in NOVA.  Seems like most of the best riding on the West side is private property (lots of farms), and on the East side it's more tracks.  If you're really wanting to bounce off some trees I'd head for WV (but again it depends on where you are at in NoVa - PA might be closer, and there's some good stuff in MD I hear)

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IMHO, both AOAA and FRO (Famous Reading Outdoors) have mostly rocky trails. A lot like Taskers Gap. There has been a record amount of rain in PA since last Fall, and a lot of trails that were mostly rocks and mud are now just rocks.

While not within your "couple of hours" range, I suggest you look at the Hatfield-McCoy trails down in south-central WV. The Bear Wallow system in Logan WV has a lot of really cool trails, and the Green and a lot of the Blue rated trails are pretty friendly. Logan is probably 6 hours from Tysons Corner, as long as you are not talking rush hour on I66. The Rockhouse system, out of Man WV also has a lot over very neat and not difficult Green and Blue trails.

My YouTube channel has a lot of boring videos of an old guy, me, riding FRO, AOAA and Hatfield-McCoy. I stay away from the hard core trails, but they can give you a flavor of the trails that I ride. http://youtube.com/c/PatFarrellKTM

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