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The 5 Best Mountain Bike Trails Around Augusta

This blog is a repost from SingleTracks.com/Blog and was written by DGaddis. To see the original blog post, click here.

I’m proud to call the the Central Savannah River Area, or CSRA, my home.  The CSRA is the the area surrounding Augusta, GA and North Augusta, SC and it’s home to some of the best, least-expected mountain biking in the southeast.  I say least expected because we don’t have any mountains here.  We’ve got hills, but no mountains.  But boy oh boy do we have trails, about 150 miles of them actually, with more in the works.  We have many of these trails because of the local MTB club, SORBA-CSRA.  SORBA-CSRA has done such a good job in this area that in 2010 IMBAheld their biannual World Summit here.  So if you’re looking for a place to take a spring MTB trip, give the CSRA a look.  In this blog post you’ll find my five favorite trails in the area, in no particular order.

FATS: Forks Area Trail System (SC)

FATS, located in the Sumter National Forest in South Carolina, is the crown jewel of the CSRA mountain bike scene, and the only IMBA Epic in South Carolina.  It’s 37 miles of fast, swoopy, roller coaster like purpose built mountain bike trails.  There are six individual loops, each with a slightly different feel and the trails will satisfy both beginners and experienced riders alike.  There is very little technical terrain at FATS so anyone can ride here and likely clean every inch of trail.  What makes this trail fun is the speed – it’s easy to get, and easy to keep.  But you do have to be careful with all that speed: there’s a bunch whoop-de-doos that will throw you over the handlebars if you’re not careful.


Riders cruising through some whoop-de-doos on the Deep Step loop at FATS

Mistletoe State Park (GA)

Mistletoe is the anti-FATS.  It’s the most technical trail in the CSRA.  The trail was not built for mountain biking, even though bikes are allowed now.  There are lots of creek crossings – some are easy, some are not.  There’s some rocks, and some steep climbs.  The trails can be a little confusing your first time out so I suggest looking for a local to show you around.  The Rock Dam and Cliatt Creek Nature Trail are the most popular rides, and most locals link them together to form a loop around 6.5 miles long, with a lot of climbing for this area.  Mistletoe is the western most portion of the big Thurmond Epic route.


One of the deeper creek crossings at Mistletoe State Park

Modoc (aka Stevens Creek) (SC)

Modoc is another technical trail, for the CSRA at least.  Located in Sumter National Forest, the Modoc trail roughly follows Steven’s Creek and has some nice scenic views.  Several ditch and creek crossings keep you on your toes on this 6-mile out and back trail.  Between the technical bits Modoc is pretty fast and smooth.  There is plenty of really nice bench cut singletrack that has been in place for decades and it’s a lot of fun to ride.  Locals link Modoc to the Turkey and Wine Creek trails for longer routes.


Only 1/4 mile from the parking lot is one of Modoc’s most memorable creek crossings.  Photo: brianW

Bartram (GA)

The Bartram trail is one of the least technical trails in the area, but it’s also one of the longest.  The trail is an out and back stretching from the West Dam Recreational Area west all the way to Washington Road, and it’s 22.5 miles one way!  The trail runs right through the Petersburg Campground, making Petersburg a great place to stay if you’re planning a visit to the CSRA to ride.

East of Petersburg is known as “old Bartram” to the locals and it is the least challenging side.  It is very flat, smooth, and very fast if you want it to be; a great place to take the kids riding.  West of Petersburg, or “new Bartram” is a little tougher, with some climbing, whoop-de-doos, and a few technical challenges.  The entire trail hugs the shores of Lake Thurmond and has lots of nice views.  Bartram is the biggest chunk of the Thurmond Epic route.


There’s something special about lakeside singletrack.  Photo: brianW

Canal Trail (GA)

This is probably going to a controversial pick as a Top Five trail but hey, it’s my list and I love thecanal trail!  It’s a very short 2.8 mile loop inside the city limits of Augusta.  This is the only trail in the area that’s within easy riding distance from a large population area.  It sits on a small piece of land between the Savannah River and the Augusta Canal.  To make the best use of the land the trail is very tight and twisty, making it a great place to work on your cornering skills.  There aren’t any big climbs, but there are a few short steep rooty grunts that can test your skills.  It’s a little trail, but it is big on fun!


That’s me, playing hookie from work and enjoying the canal trail on a sunny Friday afternoon in the spring.  Don’t tell my boss.

This blog is a repost from SingleTracks.com/Blog and was written by DGaddis. To see the original blog post, click here.

The “A” List

Top 5 things to get excited about in Augusta, Ga this October

Westobou Festival: October 2 – 6, 2013

From film and music collaborations like Joan of Arc + Kim Gordon with Body/Head to up-and-coming artists JOHNNYSWIM to world renowned Mark Morris Dance Group and “modern day Mark Twain” writer Roy Blount Jr., Westobou Festival brings innovative indie art and culture to the front and center of Augusta’s scene for five full days. For more info, visit WestobouFestival.com.

The Color Run: October 5, 2013

What do you get when you add head-to-toe paint to an untimed 5K that you can run, walk or both? The “Happiest 5K on the Planet”! Regardless of your age or athletic ability, you can experience the fun. At each kilometer, participants are doused in powder paint until they reach the party at the finish line! For more info, visit TheColorRun.com/Augusta.

Augusta Hispanic Festival: October 11 – 12, 2013

The Augusta Common is bursting with awesome authentic food and cultural performances during the Hispanic Festival! I dare you to try and walk downtown with being lured in by the smell of the food and the promise of fresh piña coladas served straight from the pineapple! Click here to see the Hispanic Festival video on YouTube. For more info, visit Elcervantino.org.

Augusta Greek Festival: October 11 – 13, 2013

You don’t eat no meat? That’s OK. They’ve got lamb. And baklava. Shop for great gifts at the bazaar, sit down and watch a traditional dance or two and make sure you try the food! You’ll feel like you’re part of a big Greek family before you leave. Click here to see the Greek Festival video on YouTube. For more info, visit HolyTrinityAugusta.org

Dark Corners: The Appalachian Murder Ballads: October 17, 2013

Asheville North Carolina artist, Julyan Davis, discusses his exhibition accompanied by a performance of murder ballads by folk musicians Greg and Lucretia Speas during the exhibition opening. You’ve gotta admit that a little macabre art and music is perfect for the festive and fun atmosphere leading up to Halloween. For more info, visit TheMorris.org.

October is a great month in Augusta and there’s lots more to do – check out our online calendar for a full list of events!

See ya’ll around!

Augusta Calendar of Events: 9/19 – 10/6

See you at the game!

Guest blog submission by Michelle Naval, Augusta Sports Council

It’s no secret that I am a HUGE fan of Augusta State University Basketball!

I can still remember going to my first ASU basketball game during my freshman year all because a friend of mine was a cheerleader and wanted me and the rest of our friends to go to the game to watch her!  Little did I know that first game would get me hooked on ASU Basketball!  That was about 5 years ago and till this day I still get excited when October comes around because I know Jaguar basketball season is right around the corner! Everyone gets excited to watch some great basketball. 

I always arrive with my game day posters and my Jaguars team spirit in hand on game days!  

Besides the game there are a lot of other things that will keep just about anybody that comes happy.  The game day environment in Christenberry Field House is great! Fans of all ages come out every game to support the teams and to enjoy some really great basketball.  Plus it also doesn’t hurt ticket prices are affordable. There’s also the ASU Study Abroad sponsored concession stand where you can get just about any candy you can think of plus huge tubs of popcorn for snacks during the game.  Halftime is probably the busiest time at the concession stand and thankfully you don’t have to wait long to get your snacks and back to your seat before the 2nd half starts! 


 
So whether or not you’re an alumni, student, community supporter, kid or just a basketball fan in general, I highly recommend coming out to catch a game at Christenberry Field House because trust me there’s still plenty of chances for you to catch a game this season!  I promise you won’t be disappointed!

So remember Augusta is not only the home of the Masters but also the Augusta State Jaguars!  Go Jags! See you at the game!

Augusta State University
Christenberry Field House
3109 Wrightsboro Road
Augusta, GA 30909
(706) 737-1632

ESi Ironman 70.3 in Augusta, Ga

Three ladies from the ACVB participated as Team Visit Augusta in the ESi Ironman 70.3 in Augusta, Ga. We were so proud of them! Peggy (pictured above), the cyclist for the team, shares her experience from the triathlon along with some fun pictures from last year.

Watch Video

Make plans to go downtown on September 30th to watch this year’s Ironman 70.3 – it’s super inspiring!

Ironman Website

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