Bike Trails VA. Virginia Creeper Trail
Raw file: Virginia Creeper Trail 2.gpx (238.95 KB)
My wife, brother and I are bicycle enthusiasts who enjoy riding the ever increasing number of rail / canal trails mostly in the Northeastern US. We also do volunteer work for NOAA by recovering US Coast & Geodetic Survey Benchmarks. We often combine these hobbies while trail riding.
Unlike geocaching, benchmark hunting serves a valuable purpose by providing NOAA with updates on the condition of their 700,000+ benchmarks across the Unites States. Information on Benchmarks is available here: http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/.
We have been riding these trails for over 10 years now and I decided to share some of the .GPX files I’ve created. Of the hundreds of trails available in this part of the country, I selected these for their quality, scenic beauty, lack of excessive grades or hazardous terrain and overall riding or hiking enjoyment. These files contain tracks for trails and waypoints for significant features such as road crossings, bike shops, campgrounds, points of interest and USCGS benchmarks along or near the trail. All waypoints include elevation data for use in plotting trail slope and planning outings. These files were compiled using a variety of resources including:
Trail Link website - www.traillink.com/
NOAA - http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/
Garmin’s Mapsource & Basecamp software
USCGS Topographic GPS Map Files. Available Legally at no cost for many States here: http://www.gpsfiledepot.com/
Google Earth & Google Maps
Garmin’s Birds Eye Imagery
Various Internet & Print resources including:
Virginia Creeper Trail.us website: http://www.vacreepertrail.us/
Virginia Creeper Trail Guide: http://www.vacreepertrail.com/index.html
Virginia Creeper Trail Club website: http://www.vacreepertrail.org/
Trail Link website: http://www.traillink.com/traillist.aspx?state=VA&keyword=virginia%20creeper&length=0|99999
This file is the Virginia Creeper Trail in Southwestern Virginia. It traverses 34 scenic miles, across more than 20 restored railroad trestles from Abingdon to Whitetop Gap. The trail surface is packed gravel / dirt and well maintained. It is one of the most popular trails on the East coast and was voted trail of the month by Rails to Trails Magazine in May, 2013. One cyclist reviewer called it a “roller coaster” due to the many wooden trestles and steep 1625 foot descent in the 17 mile stretch between Whitetop and Damascus. Seasonal shuttle service is available between these two points for those who want a downhill only experience. Find more Information here: http://www.vacreepertrail.com/services/bikerental.html
Anyone interested in Benchmark hunting can obtain detailed data sheets for each mark by going here: http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_pid.prl The PID is the waypoint name symbolized by the color coded cube icons. Green= Recovered within the last 10 years. Blue= No recent recovery but set in a massive structure which still exists. Red= Likely missing or reported destroyed.
Free, legal, 24K and 100K topo map downloads for the states with these trails are available here: http://www.gpsfiledepot.com/ Segments of these maps covering the above trails can be loaded into many older handheld GPS receivers with limited memory by using Garmin’s Mapinstall program available here: http://www8.garmin.com/support/download_details.jsp?id=3291
I’ll post more trail files as I update and clean them up. I always enjoy conversing with fellow bike trail enthusiasts so please feel free to contact me with comments, questions, inclusions or revisions. – Enjoy!
****** Update 11/20/2015 ******
Added 8 waypoints
Updated parking area information
Minor track realignment in 3 locations
Updated header page
charlesd45 - Jan 17, 2016
bdhsfz6 - Nov 20, 2015
Added parking area info. Added 8 waypoints. Minor track alignment