This past weekend I found myself in Morgantown, West Virginia for a wedding. From the onset I knew there was great biking to be had, but I was unsure as to the amount of time I had to hit up the trails. I had just read the race reports from this year’s Hillbilly Roubaix and talked with many folks from around these parts as to what Morgantown had in store. Due to my limited time, I had to narrow down what I could ride, see and do in just a few hours one morning. While Cooper’s Rock State Forest had lots to offer as well as some in town trails, my heart told me to check out the rails-to-trails in the area. I knew that I could cover lots of ground, experience the West Virginia backdrop, ride relativity safe and be back in time for the wedding.
Since I only had about a two and a half hour window to ride I choose to go with Deckers Creek. I decided to start at the end of the trail near Reedsville, WV and bike back into Morgantown. This gave me the opportunity to be closer to our hotel and travel with a slight downhill roll. Little did I realize at the time but the downhill roll made for a much faster pace than I expected.
The end of the trail wasn’t much to look at (besides some kind of crazy bones). It just kind of ends without much fan fair, so this meant my start wasn’t much to marvel about either. Once on the trail with my Fargo underneath, the crushed limestone turned into the beautiful scenic path of West Virginia. Farmlands and wetlands ran parallel with the trail as I quickly peddled though the beginning parts of Deckers Creek.
Crossing paths with “tribble” sized fury animals made me realize that I never fully grasped what these animals were on my last trip with Emerson Brown. I think they are groundhogs but having never seen one up close I am unsure.
The wetlands of WV quickly turned into beautiful canopies of overhanging trees from mountain edges, following along rapid moving streams. It was amazing that in just a few miles I had moved from farmlands, to wetlands to mountain areas. (And within a couple or more miles I would be at the heart of a nice little city.) While I like to put the rubber to the road as much as the next rider I also like to stop and smell the roses. I periodically would get off my bike and check out the rapids down below along with the beautiful rock formations found alongside the trail. I would occasionally come across other riders in which we would exchange our greetings and be along our way.
A local limestone quarry runs right through Deckers Creek Trail. I’m impressed how both the business and the trail managers are able to work together to help support bicycling and the outdoors in the area. I’m not sure how often Greer Limestone get’s told thank you for their support, but I for one thank you.
About halfway through the trail it was nice to see a few neighbors along the way who fully embraced bicycle tourism. A little rest stop along with a homemade country store adorned the trail. I stopped briefly to check it all out, but didn’t really had a need to rest or refuel at this point.
In what seemed like no time the crushed limestone turned into paved walkways which meant I was nearing the end (beginning) of Deckers Creek Trail. However unlike the beginning (end) of the the trail this was to much fan fair! A local Boy Scout troop had planted a community garden and built a nature path right next to the trail. With cool artwork, bike parking and interpretive signs this little welcome spot was a pleasant surprise for my bicycle voyage.
With a few more peddle stokes I found myself at the intersection of where Deckers Creek and Mon River Trails meet up. Fourth of July celebrations were underway at Hazel Ruby McQuain Park and the crowds were starting to pack in. It was cool seeing how many local area residents were arriving by bicycle to the event.
I really wished I had more time to explore Morgantown and its bicycling culture. I am really hoping I can make it back to check out Cooper’s Rock State Forest along with many other areas.
Bicycling Deckers Creek Trail in West Virginia This past weekend I found myself in Morgantown, West Virginia for a wedding. From the onset I knew there was great biking to be had, but I was unsure as to the amount of time I had to hit up the trails.