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Fran Uhler Natural Area

Average Rating:    (2.43 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 7

Lots of wash outs, mud. Some trails are overgrown with veg. Single track along Patuxent River is tight and muddy.
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Latitude
39.03238606445606
Longitude
-76.75409317016601
Trail Directions
From Wash. D.C., take B/W Parkway to Rte 197 South towards Bowie. Take left at Lemon's Bridge Rd. Park at MARC train Parking lot. Ride to end of LemonsBridge Rd. Go under RR tracks near Patuxent River and Follow trails behind Bowie State Univ.
Trail Length
4-5 miles
Trail Level
Beginner
Trail Type
Singletrack & Fire Roads
City/County
Bowie
   


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Reviews 1 - 5 (7 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

Review Date
May 25, 2015

Overall Rating
 1 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 1 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 1 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a year

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Reviewed by: Rob ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
Your basic trails nothing to write home about. If you are on a dirt bike you will be bored fast. All the trails are wide open,not at all challenging. Don't waste your time riding here, unless you have a little one you are trying to teach to ride for the first time you will be bored within the hour. Go ride down at route 5 it is just like the Beltsville pits were 20 years ago. Bowie state is just not worth the trip.



Comments
ocjlb (07/06/2015)
Route 5? Where? BTW, could not agree more re: your assessment of this area...
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Review Date
April 8, 2008

Overall Rating
 2 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 2 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 1 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a week

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Reviewed by: mtbbowiestate ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
I live right behind this trail. It’s a great trial to learn how to ride on. There are two places to enter by the water pumping station by the bike path and off of loupe road on Bowie state university. Of you go on loop road there is a dirt turn off that you can take to get on to the trails. There are a lot of great connecting trails back here. There is also some what of a bike park with dirt jumps but they can get washed out extremely easily. There are a couple things to watch for, the trail is known for its off roading, and you have to keep an eye out for truck and ATV’s. The second is that even though it is a wild life refugee it is an extremely popular for turkey hunting. You have to watch out for the poacher and if you see a bird stay away from it, some one might be aiming at it.

Recommended Route:
loop road bowie state university



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Review Date
December 29, 2001

Overall Rating
 2 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Every few months

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Reviewed by: Brad , from Crofton

Summary:
Mainly double track and wide sections of trail. This area can get wet and muddy after rains so check it out when it has been dry for a while, unless you like it sloppy. The other side of the track has some flat singletrack. This is good place to grab some friends and explore. Trails here are for begginner to intermediate riders. Few roots and logs make for a tame ride but still offers a challenge to some. 10 miles of trails.

Recommended Route:
A good place to start out is at the new WB&A Trailhead parking area which is between bowie state and the old bowie horse track. From the parking lot head away from the paved trailhead and main road toward the brick building at the far end of the lot. Take a left before the building onto the trail. Stay on the old section of railroad which has been converted to a trail. Some smaller trails branch out but they all end up near the same place. These will get you back behind bowie state and over to the lakes and eventually to the amtrack. These are great trails to explore but they don't offer much in the way of a thrilling experience. The most excitement you'll have is waiting under the amtrak brige for the train to pass over. IT IS WORTH IT!!! At this point you will have hopefully covered most of the trails on the bowie state side of the track. Continue under the bridge to the other side and there will be a trailhead just to your right which is marked by a cleaver sign "Trail". There are a couple man-made bridges that take you over the small streams. Continue along the singletrack beside the river. After a while you can double back to the tracks and finish the ride by taking new routes back to the parking lot.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Anything at Patapsco, Schaeffer Farms, and some good stuff north of Baltimore.



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Review Date
December 14, 2001

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Dave , from Hyattsville, Md

Summary:
Actually this park is split in 2 sections. The area North and West of Lemmons Bridge Road is actually Fran Uhler while south of it once you cross under the railroad bridge is Patuxent River Park (not to be confused with the Upper Marboro section featured on this web sight). Patuxent River Park
Follow the main trail from under the RR bridge south 2 miles to the end at the WB&A trail head (or trail tail) and pumping station? The trail is sparcely marked with orange ribbons and runs north/south along the river. It may eventually be an extension of the WB&A trail. It is an old railroad bed with plates, spikes, and ties along the way. Terrain varies from loose gravel, sand, limestone chunks, to dirt and mud. The white trail that runs closer to the river part of the way is a swamp so don't bother with it. There are several trails that branch of the main trail and more that branch off those trails. They are what make this park interesting. Mostly beginner to advanced beginner single and double track. Trails intersect the main trail at 3/4 mile, 1 1/4, and 1 1/2 miles from the south WB&A enterance. Found a motor cross course near the west side (Bowie State enterance) with some decent jumps. Fran Uhler Natural Area
Found 2 enterances off of Lemmons Bridge Road that are 1 mile from the MARC parking lot. The first is a fire road that leads to crossing trails. It goes 1 1/2 miles to 197 but the last 1/2 mile is no trespassing. Ran out of daylight, will checkout and report back at a later date. There is a trail marked "trail" just after the road but before RR bridge. It lasted 1/3 mile before dissapearing into the river. In summary I recommend this place; 1) When dry for several days
2) If you are a beginner or like nature
3) Not too geographically challenged. Lots of short but interesting trails in a relatively small area.

Recommended Route:
See posting by Bryan from Elkridge. It is 1 1/4 miles from MARC paring lot to enterance under railroad bridge. No specific recommended trail but there are many fun trails off of the main trail.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Patuxent River Park, Cedarville State Forest, the pits



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Review Date
April 30, 2001

Overall Rating
 2 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Bryan , from Elkridge

Summary:
As stated earlier, this area can be very wet & muddy. It's a good trail for beginners that are at least comfortable with their bike. More experienced riders will probably get bored from the lack of speed you can gain or challenging terrain other than rocks & mud. Not a trail I will rush back to, but it's at least one more trail I can add to my list!

Recommended Route:
After leaving the MARC Train Park-N-Ride, proceed to right down Lemons Bridge Rd to park entrance---Vehicle gate. Go around gate or lift bike over. Lift over or go around gate. Follow trail straight. (Other trails will break off to the left. Explored one, but led to swamp.) Follow to right under train tracks. Gets very rocky at this point. Stay to right and follow trail that was once (and still is) a rail bed. It gets very bumpy--watch out for wood and spikes from rail bed. It gets very muddy back there!!! Other trails break off from this, but this will lead to WB&A.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Not very familiar with Bowie area.



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Reviews 1 - 5 (7 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5