About This Blog

This Blog contains information on Gravel/Dirt road routes in Virginia , Maryland, Southern Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Also some links to Gravel/Dirt road databases (for planning your own route). Mainly close to the Washington D.C. Metro area. There will not be a lot of new posts. But the posts will be updated regularly. New posts will be added only when there is a new area needed to be added. I hope this will be helpful.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Due to an injury I have not been doing much gravel grinding lately. But I have been keeping an eye on the database. It seems to be working out fairly well. I wanted to keep my database local to Loudoun but the new site holds more info. It appears everything I had on Google is gone, sorry but that is an Google issue.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

New Loudoun Gravel Road Database plus a lot more

I got tired of trying to fix the database on Google so I am moving all my info to gravelmap.com I will be completing the move over the next few days but most of the roads are there. Plus there appears to be a ton of gravel road info for all over the US. We will see how this works out.

Loudoun Dirtroad Database

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Great Info

Here is a link to online West Virginia County Maps.The maps show what is suppose to be gravel roads. I am working on another Google Map database from Preston, Monongalia, Tucker and Taylor Counties. http://goo.gl/maps/11Bpp Why a another google database? I find it easier to plan route routes looking at google maps. Why there? My Mother in-law lives near there. It will give me a better excuse to visit. I can't wait to check some of them out.

Here is a link to Charlottesville Bike Clubs website. https://www.cvillebikeclub.org/archive/cbc/maps.htm They have posted up some gravel routes around the Charlottesville area. Maps and Que Sheets, very nice.

Here is the link to the Virginia Dept. of Transportation's county maps. They are not online but they are cheap to buy. 5o cents each or $35 for the whole State. They are a little out of date, some of the roads they say are gravel are actually paved now. All the better reason to have a google map database for accuracy.VDOT County Maps


Monday, June 17, 2013

Wythe/Bland/Smyth Counties, Virginia. Gravel Road Database

This Database is near and dear to me. For most of you DC folks, it is not near. But if you ever find your way down to one of the most beautiful areas I have rode, you should check it out.

This database is a work in progress with a bunch of new colors for roads (for those who are familiar with my other Databases). I am putting the info out earlier then usual. I began using VDOT's county roads maps to help with discovering new gravel roads. I have found that the maps are chock full of mistakes. The roads may have been paved since the maps were published. So on roads I have never been on or can't remember being on, I am using google earth to help identify possible gravel roads. I have found a need to code them so people know they are not confirmed gravel roads.

Basically the color codes go like this:

Brown = Confirmed Gravel/Dirt by myself or other
Blue    = Unconfirmed but VDOT says it is gravel and looking at Google Earth, it appears to be. In   other words it is a good bet it is gravel.
Purple   = VDOT say it is, can't tell on Google Earth.
Red       = VDOT says it is, but is most likely paved
Green    = Forest or Logging Road (Adventure Time!)

I hope this helps and check back often. The roads will either be brown or removed. I ride there as often as I can.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Fort Valley Area, Massanutten Mtn., Shenandoah County, Virginia

Saint Davids Church Rd, Fort Valley, Virginia
Photo By Peter Beers

Here are some routes centered around the Fort Valley, Virginia area. Fort Valley runs in the middle of Massanutten Mountain. This is a mountainous area with great long climbs and screaming downhills. Awesome gravel roads run through beautiful farm land in the valley. The valley is surrounded on all sides by the George Washington National Forest. Gravel roads climb up into the National Forest for a few ridge line dirt forest roads. This area is great riding but be forewarned, these routes are not for the out of shape rider or those who do not like to climb.

The Gravel Ring (all road) version. Route starts HERE
This route contains a mix of gravel and paved roads. It is approximately 74 miles long with 7400ft of climbing. There are long stretches of Gravel and long stretches of pavement. The first 25 miles is rolling valley roads before you hit the first long gravel climb, Crisman Hollow rd. Which is approx. 7 miles from the bottom to the summit. This is in my opinion is the easiest of the 3 big climbs on this route. Your are rewarded with a nice long screaming downhill. You will then roll on pavement till the next climb, Moreland Gap rd./FR 374. Pretty much all gravel except for a short bit at the beginning. This climb is approx. 6 miles to the summit. Still not the hardest climb on the route. Again you are rewarded with a screaming paved downhill, Edinburg Gap rd. The route then rolls through Edinburg to Woodstock on Rte 11. The Final Big Climb is on Woodstock Tower rd. I hope you saved some energy for this one. It is only 3.5mi. long but is the steepest of the big climbs. Lots switchbacks to fool you into thinking the climb is over. It is gravel with paved turns in the switchbacks. After you summit the climb you have a nice gravel downhill back into the valley. Then you roll about 5 miles back to the starting point. There are 4 water stops on this route. Check the link to the route for locations (they are also on the cue sheet). The first water stop (mile 23.5, Camp Roosevelt picnic area) is only turned on from mid May to late October. There is a close by alternative, Caroline Furnace Lutheran Camp. The Second is a piped spring on Edinburg Rd at about mile 50. The Third is a Sheetz convenience store in Woodstock at about mile 58. The final water stop you will have to go off course at about mile 67 for about 2 miles. It is another piped Spring on FR 66. I suggest you only use this water stop for emergencies, the end of the route is only about 7 miles away.

Moreland Gap/Woodstock Tower Route starts HERE.
This is a shorter version of the Gravel Ring. Basically the same but it is 56 miles long with about 5300ft of climbing. Water stops are in the same places described  above (check link and cue sheet for locations). This route has two big climbs on it instead of three. You will climb the east side of Massanutten Mountain on Moreland Gap rd. instead of the west side. The Climb is approximately 6 miles and mainly gravel.The nice thing is you still climb Woodstock Tower Rd in the best painful direction.

More Routes to come, Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Michaux State Forest Gravel Road Database

Here is a link to a database map of the gravel, dirt and some double track roads in Michaux State Forest, Pennsylvania. It is being compiled with help from Brett Weiser (Friend and Michaux Native). Not 100% complete as no map of mine ever will be. I will update it when needed. But you can put some nice routes together as is.


Monday, April 1, 2013

Smyth County Virginia

Pugh Mountain Road, Smyth County, Virginia

Here is my first attempt at a route completely in Smyth County Virginia. I do have to say this turned out nice. According to the VDOT map, Smyth County does not have a lot of gravel roads. I was worried if this was going to be a waste of time.This one is only 38 miles long but with approximately 4700 ft of climbing, it is plenty long enough. It has 20 miles of gravel/dirt roads (54%) and 18 miles of paved and tar and chip roads (46%). Once you get away from Atkins/Marion this route is beautiful country, mountainous and National Forest riding.
This route, Atkins/Sugar Grove/Glade Mountain starts in Atkins at the elementary school on Rte 11. The first 7 miles are paved and you are in the land of the trailer home. Then you turn on Pugh Mountain rd which starts out paved then turns to dirt a little ways up. Pugh Mtn rd is a 2.1 mile 747ft nice climb. Then this road shoots downhill for 2.8 miles into a beautiful valley. On the way down the road changes from dirt to gravel then pavement at the very end. It has several banked turns which makes the climb up worth it. The route then turns towards Sugar Grove. You hit 2 short gravel roads before hanging left and heading up Hwy 16 (Sugar Grove Hwy). Shortly after you get on Hwy 16 the only water stop is on you left, Shirley's Market. You climb up and hit Nick Creek rd which is a nice climb. You are again rewarded with an awesome curvy paved top notch downhill. You then hang a right on Glade Mountain rd. *Special Note* just after the intersection with Mulberry Lane at mile 20.3, there are private property signs. I got permission 2 years ago to go through from the owner. I do not know if the road is really private or not. But the owner claims a short section is. So please stop and ask permission to go though. Don't worry if he says no. Go back to the intersection and go right on Mulberry Lane. This road will take you back into Atkins. Hang a right on Rte 11 Lee Hwy. The elementary school where you started is on the left about a 1/4 mile or so. Glade Mountain road is a 3 mile 1050ft forest road climb, Nice! At approximately mile 26 be sure and go left onto Forest Road 86. If you hit a gate around then, go back you missed the turn. Follow Forest Rd 86 (which is a nice up and down forest road) for about 9 miles before hitting Denzle Lane and Kiawana rd back into town.

Again, the only water stop is at mile 15.3, Shirley's Market. Enjoy!