Coopers Rock Park Bike Trails: A Morgantown Gem
Morgantown, West Virginia - Nestled just 10 miles east of Morgantown on I-68, Coopers Rock Park offers a network of bike trails spanning a distance of 50 miles. While it might not be everyone's cup of tea, a dive into these trails reveals an array of terrains suitable for intermediate level riders, and a scenery that's hard to forget.
Getting to the Trails
- Location: Coopers Rock Park, East of Morgantown on I-68
- Entry Points: Take the exit for Coopers Rock Park. Options to park in the lower or upper parking lots.
- Starting Point: First parking area on the right after entering the park. Follow the "Roadside Trail" towards the Overlook. Maps available to prevent detours.
- Diverse Terrain: From tough hill climbs to exhilarating downhill slopes, and even flat areas at the mountain's pinnacle, these trails truly offer something for everyone.
- Scenic Beauty: The woods lining the trails burst into a riot of colors, especially during the fall, making for a visually stunning ride. The overlook at Coopers Rock and the view at Raven Rock are definite must-visits.
- Challenging Aspects: Riders can expect a mix of flowing trails, rocky patches, and moderate technical challenges. Some trails, like the Rock City, provide heart-thumping excitement with their rocky descents.
What Riders are Saying
- Positive Vibes: Many riders praise the network for its challenging aspects and beautiful scenery. Riding through these trails during the right season can feel magical with the colors and sounds of nature.
- Cautionary Tales: On the other hand, some riders felt the area was dominated by washed-out logging roads and lacked flow. An occasional rattlesnake sighting has also been reported.
- Local Favorites: For those who have taken the time to explore, trails like Ridge, Rohdedendrum, Rail Grade, and Monte Chateau leading to the lake are often cited as rewarding experiences. The Advanced Ski trail, in particular, is noted for its mellow climb, filled with fun technicalities.
- A Wish for Improvement: Despite its merits, some cyclists hope for better development in the future, pointing out the potential of the area with its abundance of rock and ledge.
Tips for the Ride
- Preparation: The old saying, "What goes down, must come up," rings true here. Be ready for some serious pedaling.
- Safety: Located in a State forest, caution is advised during the fall owing to hunting activities.
- Exploration: There's a lot to cover, so first-timers might benefit from grabbing a map from the visitor's center. Some of the trails can be rocky and challenging, but as many riders pointed out, learning all the trails can alter one's perspective on the entire area.
In the heart of West Virginia, Morgantown's Coopers Rock Park Bike Trails offer a mix of reactions. But whether it's for the thrill of the descent, the challenge of the climb, or the serenity of nature's beauty, one thing's for sure – it's a ride many won't easily forget.