Located in Germantown, Maryland, the Hoyles Mill Connector serves as an invaluable 8-mile stretch connecting Schaeffer Farms to Black Hills Regional Park. Designed and maintained by MORE, this out-and-back route complements your mountain biking experience by offering additional miles to your trail rides, whether it be Schaeffer Farms, Ten Mile Creek, or even a grand MoCo Epic 25-mile route.
- Distance: 8 miles
- Level: Very Easy
- Route Type: Out & Back
- City: Germantown
- State: Maryland
Getting There: Take Interstate 270 to exit 15B for Rt. 118 West. Follow for 5 miles, turn right onto Richter Farm Road, then left on 4-way stop on Schaeffer Road. Trailhead is at the end of the parking lot after the gate.
The Trail: Features and Caveats
Key Elements of the Route
- Trail Markings: The trail is well-marked, ensuring a straightforward experience.
- Terrain: Mostly fast, flowy singletrack with sections of grassy fields and gravel.
- Obstacles: Watch out for a rock garden and potential downed trees, especially where Boyle's Mill Road transitions from gravel to paved.
- Views: A short but scenic stretch over Little Seneca Lake and through wooded areas.
Seasonal and Maintenance Alerts
- Current Conditions: As of the latest update, be wary of muddy patches and a significant downed tree.
- Facilities: This trail gives an option to detour to the Rec Center to try the pump track.
Rider Insights: Is It Worth the Ride?
- Connector Role: Though not a destination on its own, it serves as a fantastic link between more extensive trails.
- Variability: The trail includes a few rocky sections that add a change of pace from the adjoining trails.
- Additional Mileage: Adds extra layers to the local biking network, ideal for a post-Schaeffer ride or for creating longer, epic loops.
- Ease of Use: No strenuous sections, making it accessible for riders of all levels.
- Multiple Trail Options: This trail allows you to loop into Black Hills or backtrack for an out-and-back experience.
- Watch for Signs: Look out for key indicators, especially when the trail transitions from singletrack to road or when crossing driving ranges.
- Use with Caution: The trail involves crossing roads and an area that can become washed out just past the gate on Hoyles Mill Road.
- Local Support: If you appreciate the maintenance and quality, consider supporting MORE, the organization behind this trail.
Hoyles Mill Connector might not be the trail you'd ride for its own sake, but as a link between other more challenging or scenic routes, it shines. Its existence adds depth to the local mountain biking network, offering an alternative for those who wish to extend their ride without the hassle of navigating through city streets. With its well-marked paths, variability in terrain, and low-level difficulty, it remains an essential cog in Germantown's mountain biking landscape.