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  1. #1
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    Bike riding in Manassas, VA

    Just wondering if it's worth it to bring my bike down there. I have a quickie 2 day trip coming up, and I was going to drag my Bike Friday down there. But from what my sister-in-law was saying, it's like a death trap trying to drive around there. I don't mind roads at all, but it did make me wonder if there's a way. Does anyone know that area well?

    Koffee

  2. #2
    Tom (ex)Builder twahl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Koffee Brown
    Just wondering if it's worth it to bring my bike down there. I have a quickie 2 day trip coming up, and I was going to drag my Bike Friday down there. But from what my sister-in-law was saying, it's like a death trap trying to drive around there. I don't mind roads at all, but it did make me wonder if there's a way. Does anyone know that area well?

    Koffee
    I live in Manassas. There is a very nice multi-use trail along Prince William Parkway with good parking. It's not flat, and the intersections aren't all that numerous. You can get a decent 15 mile ride (out and back) starting at the intersection of Liberia Ave. and PW Parkway, going down to the McCourt building where the main county offices are. It goes further as well. The problem with Manassas is that most of the areas that would be nice to ride are bisected by major roads, and we're kind of a bedroom community for Washington.

    There is also to W&OD trail a short drive away, you can pick it up at several points, and it's 45 miles of paved trail, much of it shaded. There's a good web site with maps and access points.

    My wife and I rode a nice circuit route starting in Purcellville on Monday, a 35 mile route with some hills that I found challenging in a very rural area. Getting to Purcellville is about an hour from Manassas.

    There's decent biking to be had. If I can be of any further help, PM me and I'll do what I can. I have a map that shows local trails and routes. We haven't explored them all, be glad to scan the local area and send you. I doubt I can keep up with you on my comfort bike, but if you want a riding partner for a ride I'd be honored to join you.

  3. #3
    Castiron Perineum Bockman's Avatar
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    Yes, the WOD is a good trail, on weekdays! Bring your most nimble bike if you ride it on weekends or after work hours as you *will* be dodging freds, rollerbladers, and joggers with 3-abreast baby strollers.

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    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti SteveE's Avatar
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    Koffee,

    You'll probably need a car to get to any good starting points. I used to live in NoVa and did a lot of riding with PPTC. My advice would be to check their website: www.bikepptc.org.

    We used to start a lot of rides at the Tyler Elementary School on Rt 55 in Gainesville but this may be all developed now. Rt. 55 beyond Rt. 15 probably isn't too bad. It parallels Rt 66 so it doesn't get too much traffic. From The Plains you can head north to Middleburg and through VA Hunt country for very pretty ride. I think there are still good rides out of Nokesville which is west of Manassas.
    "Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ...'holy *****...what a ride!'"

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    Once you get there, you'll see what your sister-in-law means. The main roads have a lot of traffic and there doesn't seem to be any mid day pause between rush hours. It's a shame since the town has some nice Civil War era sights and houses, but I wouldn't want to bike to them. You'll definitely want to drive to a starting point unless your brother lives on the outskirts of town.

    Hal in Woodbridge

  6. #6
    Breaker of Spokes P. B. Walker's Avatar
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    You can also go out more toward the country (Nokesville) which has plenty of backroads that are great for cycling. This webpage: http://www.pankin.com/cues.htm
    has some cue sheets at the bottom of the page for rides that start in Marshall and the Warrenton/Gainsville area. Both of those area's are pretty close to Manassas.

    You can also check the Babes on Bikes website (http://www.babesonbikes.org/) for some que sheets... they might have some rides out near Manassas.

    Or you can take Route 28 North and ride on the W&OD bike trail. There is a large parking lot where the path goes over Route 28.

  7. #7
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    Thanks to everyone! I will definitely take a bit more time out in the coming days to re-read these threads. I am coming in on a Thursday evening and leaving out that Saturday night. There's not a lot of time, but I'd like to get in some riding on Friday and Saturday. Twahl, I'll contact you about a ride.

    I'm not sure exactly where my brother moved to, but my sister-in-law told me she lives about a half mile away from the Old Navy where she works (in some big mall in Manassas). I will have my Bike Friday, with the 20 inch wheels, so I'm sure the comfort bike will match the Bike Friday for speed!

    I'm looking forward to riding out there! Thanks again!

    Koffee

  8. #8
    Super Biker Mtn Mike's Avatar
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    Me too! I'm heading to my old hometown of Clifton VA this week, which is just a few miles from Manassas. I'm bringing my bike too. I agree with what was said above; NoVa has good cycling in selected areas where you're not dodging baby strollers, SUVs, and other species of crazy-yuppie. I plan to ride my bike into the city (DC) along either the C&O canal (gravel) or the W & OD trail (paved), more for the purpose of being a tourist than anything else. But I'd like to find some groups to ride with that leave the suburbs and go out into the countryside. Anyone know of any group rides starting near Manassas or Clifton?

  9. #9
    Tom (ex)Builder twahl's Avatar
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    There's a ride in Westminster the 14th. Westminster is right at 100 miles from Manassas. Reston Bike Club probably has something going on but their schedule is a couple months out of date. That's all I know of right now as far as anything organized. My wife and I ride the PW Parkway route fairly often, it's just out and back, trying to get in shape for a metric century next month in Westminster. We've been throwing in longer rides when we get the chance, we found a book called "Road Biking Virginia" (I believe that's the title) that has some neat rides in it. We've done a couple of them, but most are more in the mountains or down around Tidewater.

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    Super Biker Mtn Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by twahl
    There's a ride in Westminster the 14th. Westminster is right at 100 miles from Manassas. Reston Bike Club probably has something going on but their schedule is a couple months out of date. That's all I know of right now as far as anything organized. My wife and I ride the PW Parkway route fairly often, it's just out and back, trying to get in shape for a metric century next month in Westminster. We've been throwing in longer rides when we get the chance, we found a book called "Road Biking Virginia" (I believe that's the title) that has some neat rides in it. We've done a couple of them, but most are more in the mountains or down around Tidewater.
    As in Westminster Maryland? My grandparents lived there until a few years ago. Western MD as a whole is a great place to ride, but a little bit out of the way for me next week

  11. #11
    Veni, Vidi, Vomiti SteveE's Avatar
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    Mtn Mike,

    I used to do the Manassas Mauler on a frequent basis. That was back in the '80s! We'd start at University Mall, head out to Clifton on Pope's Head Road (I think), Clifton Rd, Union Mill Rd,. Compton's Corner, around Manassas, back via Yates Ford Rd., Wolf Run Shoals Rd. The riding around there probably sucks these days.

    SteveE
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  12. #12
    Tom (ex)Builder twahl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn Mike
    As in Westminster Maryland? My grandparents lived there until a few years ago. Western MD as a whole is a great place to ride, but a little bit out of the way for me next week
    Yep, that's the Westminster I was talking about. My wife grew up there. Doing our first "significant" ride around Carroll County should prove interesting...although we did 36 miles starting at Purcellville (west of Leesburg) and going up into Lovettsville. That was no cake walk.

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    Super Biker Mtn Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveE
    Mtn Mike,

    I used to do the Manassas Mauler on a frequent basis. That was back in the '80s! We'd start at University Mall, head out to Clifton on Pope's Head Road (I think), Clifton Rd, Union Mill Rd,. Compton's Corner, around Manassas, back via Yates Ford Rd., Wolf Run Shoals Rd. The riding around there probably sucks these days.

    SteveE
    Yep, my old stomping grounds. Those used to be peaceful country roads before the housing boom in 80's and 90's in Clifton. There was also tons of mountain biking (and BMXing as a kid) in those days. I used to live on Clifton road, and then on Chapel Rd. Ah the good ol days....

  14. #14
    Super Biker Mtn Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by twahl
    Yep, that's the Westminster I was talking about. My wife grew up there. Doing our first "significant" ride around Carroll County should prove interesting...although we did 36 miles starting at Purcellville (west of Leesburg) and going up into Lovettsville. That was no cake walk.
    Sounds like a great time! The cycling is pretty similar to northern VA, with lot's of open roads and nice gentle rollers. Have fun.

  15. #15
    Tom (ex)Builder twahl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn Mike
    Sounds like a great time! The cycling is pretty similar to northern VA, with lot's of open roads and nice gentle rollers. Have fun.
    Well the fear is "the infamous Kate Wagner hill" that we know is part of the route. It's a *****. There's a lot of Carroll Country that's not so gentle, and I know we're going to cover some of it. It'll be fun though. We've really only been riding seriously for a couple of weeks and can see the improvements. We've done about 85 miles this week, with a break cause the wife is out of town for a couple of days, although I'll make at least 100 for myself in 7 days before Saturday.

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