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Mountain Lake Conservancy Trail System

Average Rating:    (4.5 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 2

The Mountain Lake Conservancy manages 2,600 acres of mountainous terrain that encompasses a very unique ecosystem due to the average elevation of over 4,000'. More than twenty miles of fern-lined trails on the property are now open to the public for biking and hiking year-round.

The 20 or so miles of trails that lay at the heart of the property are frequented during the winter by back country skiers as they hold the only snow in the area during the coldest months.

New for 2008 is 3.5 miles of technical single track to challenge even the the most expert riders. More new single track is being planned.

There are also over 35 miles of fire road and jeep track available from the trail head. Perfect for endurance training, the jeep trails are rocky and technical with hard climbs and fast descents. Much of it parallels the AT.

Parking passes are available (day-use = $3, yearly = $25). All fees are used to build new single track, maintain and improve existing trails, and fund the construction of a new pump track and MTB skills park being planned for Spring 2008.

These trails are home to the 'Dirty Dawg MTB Race', held in June. This is the sister race to the famous 'Rowdy Dawg MTB Race' and is well on it's way to becoming one of the region's favorite courses.

Due to the high elevation, this is a perfect place for mid-summer riding. Temperatures are typically 10-15 degrees cooler than at nearby Pandapas Pond Recreation Area.

To find the day-use parking area, drive 15 minutes West of Blacksburg on 460, and follow the signs up to Mountain Lake on your right. Climb the mountain (you'll gain 2,000') to the Mountain Lake Hotel and continue on around the lake, the road turns to gravel, climb the hill and at the top you will see a parking area on your right.

The $3 parking fee is on the honor system. Please do your part to help sustain this unique trail area. Custom trail maps are available at the Conservancy office next to the hotel, and also at East Coasters Bike Shop in Blacksburg.

See the map from the 2007 Dirty Dawg MTB Race below...
http://www.inhardy.com/maps/DirtyDawgMap.html

For more info please visit...
www.MtnLakeConservancy.org
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Latitude
37.36415426173098
Longitude
-80.5349349975586
Trail Length
10-25
Trail Level
Trails for all skill levels
Trail Type
Singletrack
City/County
Blacksburg
State/Territory/Province
VA
Country
US
Web Address
Information Added By
   


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Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

Review Date
May 13, 2009

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 4 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 5 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a year

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Reviewed by: vtcoolkid ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
The once a year riding is only because of my transplant to Richmond. Mountain Lake is mountain biking in another world. The temperature is always cooler than Pandapas, ferns are everywhere, giant hemlock stands, and there are rarely many, if any, other riders on the trails. The top of the mountain (ToeJammer and Bear Cliffs) can get very technical due to the upthrust rocks. The beginning of Spring Trail is an old road which turns into single track so unridden that the moss is still on most of the rocks. The difficulty of the trails varies but most are well marked so you know what you're getting into. I ride a hardtail but a full suspension wouldn't be a bad idea.

Overall, the Mtn Lake trails offer challenges for all riding levels, solitude, and awesome views. They'll also rent bikes to you if you're from out of town.

Recommended Route:
Stop by the office and talk to them about what you're thinking about. Ben Brown will steer you down a good path.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Pandapas Pond



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Review Date
February 3, 2008

Overall Rating
 5 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 3 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a week

Visitors rate this review
5.00 of 5, 2.00 votes

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Reviewed by: doubleB ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
These trails are perfect for XC riding with your pals or even your family. Once you get familiar with the different technical qualities of the terrain around the mountain it is easy to pick a route that will suit the type of ride you are looking for. You'll find trails for kids, raw beginners and even hammerhead adults to get excited about.

Be ready for sudden weather changes and pack for cooler temps as the altitude can bring cold wet fog, snow or wind with little warning. The trails tend to stay clear of mud due to the sandstone rich geology and lower intensity use due to the system's distance from larger populations.

Bring extra inner-tubes if riding the more technical trails, they are rocky and pinch flats are not uncommon.

Beware that cell phones work on about half of the property.

Recommended Route:
Come out and explore. The 2007 Dirty dawg MTB Race route is a favorite.
You can pick an easy route or one that maxes out your skill level. There are many scenic overlooks to scope out.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
The Butt Mountain Loop is a 24 mile fire road/jeep track ride that will make you appreciate that full-suspension XC race bike you invested in. Pays off with a nice view next to the old fire tower of the New River and westward.



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Reviews 1 - 2 (2 Reviews Total)

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