A 14+ mile singletrack trail with optional black diamond sections and bail out points. Normal trial is great for training and speed while the Black Diamonds offer challenging technical riding. Definately a great trial for people on LI. Might not be worth the trip for someone from the City though.
Summary: This is mostly an update, because the last review was over 3 years ago.
Trail is still well maintained, it's a long, flat, hard packed, and fast trail. Mostly pine needles or light sand over hardpack, with a few sandier sections. Great flow, very fast, but obstacles that test an advanced rider are few and far between compared to trails like GR.
Theres some pretty fun moguls/rollercoaster style sections off the main loop. There are some new trails on the north side near the Campsite loop that deserve the DBD designation they were given. They're still fresh and un-packed right now, they are clearly marked with signs (and even names) but are not yet on the maps. IMO, the new ones are the most fun part, there's even a nice jump or two in there.
Recommended Route: Take 495 to rt 101 north. 101 turns into 21, and crosses over Whiskey rd (there's a light at the intersection and a field to your left (west) side). Parking lot is about a quarter mile past the signal.
Trail starts in the back of the lot, goes around west side, crosses the road, and continues on the east side of rt 21.
I believe I hit every loop, and it was just over 19 miles. It takes 2-2.5 hrs if you're fit, it's really not that hard to average 8-9mph. Give yourself extra time if you're riding after work, the last thing you want is to be 5 miles out from your car when the sun sets (this isn't like CP where bailouts are a few hundred feet, you can be 3 miles of bailout away from the lot, and the bailouts are poorly marked in some places).
Other recommended trails in the same area: CP (5 minutes south on the same road) is more beginner friendly.
Manorville is about 10-15 minutes west. Similar style trails, but overgrown and you're guaranteed to get ticks. You do basically get the trail to yourself though, rare to run into another rider.
GR (glacier ridge) is about 15 minutes west (take 495 to north ocean, trail starts behind the town clerk's office). Shorter trail, a lot more climbing, and a lot more advanced rider friendly obstacles, but nowhere near as fast.
Summary: Fairly fast, hardpack w/ thin layer of pine needles, some sections (sand box, desert) are a bit more sandy, but nothing you'd have trouble getting through with regular width tires etc. Few very brief sections of mud. The ground absorbs precipitation quickly, within a day or two of a major storm it'll be more or less dry again.
Plenty of area on the sides of paths to pull over and let faster riders through, though there are several sections where branches/foliage is narrow enough to hit your arms/handlebars. The people who take care & groom the trail do an amazing job of it, the trail is also very well marked using yellow signs etc, getting lost is nearly impossible for even the 1st timer, the more experienced riders are always helpful/friendly/accommodating to those who aren't; as long as you let us go pass within a mile or so :)
The trail's criticized/been called a 'bike path' more than a mt. bike trail because it's fairly flat, with only a few slow demanding technical sections. The black diamond and double black diamond ratings are wildly over-classified, considering other trails in NYS, don't be afraid to try them, they're more fun than outright challenging.
Excellent trail for keeping up cardio/stamina. The great thing about RP trails is if things are getting to easy, just go faster!
Unlike other trails (bald hill), it is a fairly 'safe' trail for the inexperienced, not too many apexes @ blind crests, sudden sandy/washout sections/drops/off-camber turns etc; it won't bite your head off & send you into the bushes if you don't have the trail fully memorized, but it definitely helps knowing what's ahead to keep up your momentum.
Other recommended trails in the same area: - S. side of Bald Hill (much more technical/tricky)
- Belle Mead Rd trails (something for everyone, highly recommended)
Summary: Rode there for the first time today. (The trails had been closed for the season by DEP -- presumably because of concerns about damage to waterlogged trails -- until today.) Took me about 2.5 hours to do the entire park, including all side trails. In part because it’s a one-way trail, and well marked, it’s easy to keep track of where you are on the map, available on the DEP and CLIMB websites. That said, there were a few moments of deja vu because the landscape is so consistent. The main loop is very tame, especially on the west side (the first part of the ride if you park at the Rocky Point Road lot): almost completely flat, almost no rocks, the only minor challenges being some tight turns and some slippery pine needles. The side trails, marked as either single or double black diamonds, range from short roller-coaster-style respites to up- or down-and-back hills that provide decent cardio and technical challenges. The Rocky Point Rd lot was full, not surprising since today was opening day, but still I only encountered a few folks on the ride, all of whom were kind. Worth checking out. A great place for mixed-ability pairs/groups, as there’s a lot for beginners and a worthwhile amount for more advanced riders. Check out DEKS American Restaurant in Rocky Point for craft beer and a tasty lunch after the ride. Enjoy!
Recommended Route: It's a one-way loop with numerous side trails that link back to the main trail. Well-marked. According to the map,there are three lots. From the Rocky Point lot, you start with the west side loop, which is less interesting than the east side stuff. The side trails marked single black would be blue in many other places, e.g. Stillwell; those marked double black are probably equivalent to single blacks at Stillwell.
Other recommended trails in the same area: Glacier Ridge; Stillwell Woods
Summary: Today was the first time that I have been to this trail. I just got my DEC permit. I went to Eastport last week and was very unimpressed (will never go back there), but RP was awesome. The parking lot was full, so I thought that the trails would be packed, but they weren;t at all. I only was a few people and everyone seemed cool, no attitudes like you get at some places. There were some big puddles and mud from all of the rain on Friday, but other than that, the trails were in great shape and marked real well. Lots of single track, diamonds, hills and even some good intermediate trails. Some really good riding. I'll definitely be back.
Recommended Route: Take the left fork out of the lot onto the main loop. It twists and turns up and down a small hill then takes you to a fire road where you can pick up a real good intermediate trail. It's a good warm up. The intermediate trail will lead you to a few good diamonds.
Other recommended trails in the same area: This is pretty much the best trail close. Montauk has some good trails, but much further out and not worth the traffic this time of year.
Summary: Very nice, groomed trail. Well marked. Fast, twisty, turny much of the way, a lot of fun. Great trail for novices. Black diamond and double black diamond are not really that tough, just a few short, steeper climbs/descents and moguls and jumps. If you're an advanced rider looking for techy terrain you're not gonna find it here. But it's still a fun trail that can be made more challanging by riding faster. I'll definitely be riding there again when I visit family on Long Island.
Recommended Route: We just followed the big loop starting from Rocky Point Road somewhere. I don't think you can go wrong with any part you decide to do. Get a trail map from the CLIMB website.