Buttermilk Trail: Richmond's Urban Biking Gem
Located in the heart of Richmond, Virginia, Buttermilk Trail provides cyclists an unexpected wilderness adventure amidst urban surroundings.
The Essence of the Trail
- Distance: 5 miles
- Level: Difficult
- Route Type: Point to point
- Location: Richmond, Virginia
Built primarily by dedicated volunteers, the trail's intricate design and sculpting are not for the faint-hearted. A seamless blend of tight single tracks and challenging terrains, the trail offers a delightful mix of both intermediate and difficult sections.
- Scenic Beauty: Nestled along the James River, the trail boasts impressive views of both nature and Richmond's urban landscape.
- Trail Diversity: Expect everything from tight single tracks to smooth and fast sections. Not much in elevation, but it promises a few good burns.
- Technical Challenges: Prepare for rocky technical areas, short climbs, switchbacks, and more. While nothing is impossible here, many sections can test even experienced riders.
- Connectivity: One of the trail's significant advantages is its connection to other popular trails in Richmond, like Northside trail and Belle Isle trail. This means riders can extend their journey for a more prolonged adventure.
The primary access point is the Reedy Creek parking lot within the City of Richmond Park System. Positioned between the Lee Bridge and the Boulevard (Nickel) bridge, it's easily accessible. Alternative access points are at the end of the Nickel bridge and from Belle Isle. Caution is advised when crossing the road at these points.
What the Community Says
The trail has a vibrant community of riders who've shared their experiences:
- "Makes a nice loop when connected with Forest Hill and North Bank trails."
- "Awesome trail. First trail I rode in VA. Offers a variety of trail types. Great trail community."
- "Rocks, streams to cross, bridges, climbs, fast downhills, sloping berms. Not for beginners, it will challenge your skills."
- "If you want to ride Buttermilk, you had better bring your "A game", because this trail is nasty!"
Things to Note
- Busy Weekends: The trail tends to get crowded on weekends. Sharing the trail with hikers can require extra caution.
- Trail Conditions: It can be sketchy when wet. As one rider mentioned, taking time to evaluate the technical sections, especially for those above one's skill level, is advisable.
- Biking Type: The trail suits those with XC bikes best. Its design, filled with ups and downs, offers an excellent workout for racers.
For anyone in Richmond with a penchant for cycling, the Buttermilk Trail is a must-try. Its urban setting, combined with the challenges it presents, promises an experience unlike any other.For a more detailed trail report and images, visit brokenspokebikes.com's review.