Mountain Biking in West Virginia

West Virginia..

What can I say, a very beautiful State, but WV has got to be the worst State I’ve Mountain Biked.
I had set 3 weeks aside to ride some of West Virginia Trails, but after just one week and just one and a half ride, I packed up and headed for Colorado.

Let me explain how I find the best rides.

** First of all, I have full access to and, these two sites give me a lot of useful Trail info about existing trails, once I am familiar with my options, I post on various well known, and local Mtb. Forums asking people for the Best 5 rides in their area, then, with a list of recommended trails, I cross reference them again with and to find the best Town(s) to base myself. Once I am based, I visit the local bike shop, and ask them the same question.. What are the best 5 rides in the area.. I then buy my maps / book, and I ride the recommended Trails.

West Virginia was not that simple.. Outdated Maps, Outdated books, Land Issues, Forestry Issues, Bikes not allowed, etc..etc..
I was advised by most people to stay near / in Davis for some notorious trails in the Canaan Valley. Once in Davis I went to the local bike shop for info and maps.. Although they were very friendly, and helpful, I left the shop knowing that the whole Trail system here has just gone to waste. The trails I had in mind were no longer possible, or at least, not as they were on the map, because of land issues. I was also told that many “No Bike” trails were now open to bikes, but they never removed the “No Bike” signs!!.. and then there were the trails that you could ride a section, but then you reached a 3 mile “No Bikes” section, so you had to walk before being able to continue.

There is no doubt in my mind that West Virginia has some fantastic Mountain Biking, but, unless you are a local, and familiar with all the trails and ongoing issues, then, as an outsider it is extremely difficult to find rides.

** Please note that Davis was recommended as the best area to use as a base, the comments I have made above are based purely on this region (Canaan Valley) and NOT for West Virginia on a whole.

** I would also like to mention that the Canaan Valley does have a very passionate tight knit group of Mountain Bikers, who where very helpful in my quest to find rides. It seems to me that this group is well aware that “Their” maps and books are (very) outdated, and that accurate trail info is non existent, and are working on sorting out these issues.

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