Thursday, September 15, 2016
Two Wheeled Adventures
Whether you're a road cyclist coasting down a hillside or a mountain biker who enjoys churning up climbs and sidewinders, Calhoun County has something for you.
For the beginner to the one training to build up mileage, the Chief Ladiga Trail is a part of the longest paved "rail-trail" in the U.S., connecting to the Silver Comet at the Alabama/Georgia state line and trekking all the way from Anniston to Smyrna. This trail is frequented by road bikes, townies, families, runners and walkers searching for an opportunity to get outdoors.
Henry Farm, the home of the Jacksonville High School Mountain Bike team, has several loops for both beginner and advanced mountain bikers.
The Choccolocco trails, also known as "Iron Legs," have several miles of climbing just off Bains Gap Road.
Coldwater Mountain is now home to more than 30 miles of mountain trails, conveniently located just minutes from downtown Historic Anniston. This extensive trail system has both beginner loops, like Baby Bear, to vast advanced trails like Bomb Dog.
Not too far from Oxford, Cheaha State Park also has a mountain bike trail system of various skill levels with spectacular views of Northeast Alabama.
LaGarde Park at the Museum Complex has several dirt trails for exploring around the Museums and Botanical Gardens.
Most Roadies around Anniston and Oxford follow the Pizza Route from Golden Springs Church or DeArmanville Post Office for route loops of various mileage.
Some locals climbs to conquer include Chimney Peak in Jacksonville, Bains Gap, and Cheaha's Scenic Parkway.
Chimney Peak is about a 1.5 mile climb with more than 900 feet of elevation change, ending with a breathtaking view of Jacksonville State University's campus and town. Bains Gap is a .75 mile climb averaging 17%. At Cheaha, roadies can climb until their heart is content, with more than 20 miles from the Ranger Station on Skyway to the highest point in Alabama.
As you see, Calhoun County is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, especially cyclists.