Q: Who would enjoy the rail trail?
A: Anyone! The rail trail accommodates cyclists at any level, beginner to advanced, from babies to seniors. And not just cyclists are welcome, come and walk, jog or stroll and pets ARE allowed on leashes under 6’. Adult tricycles and even the occasional electric scooter have been spotted!
Q: What is the trail made of?
A: The trail base is made of compact limestone with not more than a 3% grade which makes for some comfortable riding. The width of the trail is roughly 8’ across, but, be careful of the edges. In some places, the trail edge may not be hard packed, and a wheel veering off the trail can become lodged. Also watch out for the surfaces under the covered bridges…these have a tendency to collect a thin sheen of moss and can get slippery.
Q: What kind of gear is needed?
A: If you plan to be on the trail for a significant amount of time; whether biking, running or walking, be sure to stay hydrated. Take plenty of water, snacks & energy bars. If you plan on biking the trail for several miles, you may consider packing a spare tube and a tire repair kit. For extended rides think about carrying a hand pump or air cylinders. Finally…don’t forget your camera! There are always opportunities to see some beautiful wildlife and nature scenes.
Q: What should you wear?
A: No special apparel is needed for enjoying the trail. Most locals head out in shorts & T-shirts in warmer weather with a light jackets or sweatshirt in cooler temps. Regular athletic shoes are fine and gloves are nice on those 40 degree mornings. Don’t forget your poncho just in case the weatherman is wrong and a storm kicks up during your trip. And lastly, eye protection is recommended; eye glasses, sun glasses or goggles. Again, all performance levels are welcome, so suit up just like you would at home.
Q: What kind of bike do you need?
A: Depends on what kind of ride you want. If you want a leisurely, comfortable ride, comfort bikes or mountain bikes work well. Bikes with fatter tires reduce bumpiness and make your ride more comfortable. If you have a bike with front & back shocks or disc brakes, even better. Many riders of the trail chose a cross-trainer type of bike, one that rides well on pavement as well as gravel or dirt. Accessories that work well for long-term trail enjoyment are front & back fenders. These reduce the kick up of lose stones, dirt & gravel. Multiple speed bikes aren’t a necessity. You may fluctuate between 4-5 gears on your whole trip though this is certainly whatever the rider prefers. Multi-speed bikes are not needed to enjoy biking the trail.
Q: What is trial courtesy?
A: Simple common sense trail traffic guidelines. Be vigilant and aware of others. Pay attention. Don’t try to remain riding side-by-side when you encounter others, drop down to single file. Pull in your pet! If you have a canine on a leash, pull him in close when bikers pass.
Q: What else should I know?
A: There is no cell phone coverage on the majority of the trail, so be prepared. Let folks know when you are starting and when you expect to finish. Be sure to check the weather forecast before heading out; nothing worse than getting caught in a severe storm. Always check your tire pressure before beginning a ride.