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Request for Info: Rock Creek Park Directions
CREATED: 05/27/10 by bad ford REPLIES: 4
bad ford's ravatar bad ford    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 186
Request for Info: Rock Creek Park Directions
POSTED: 5/27/10 11:32 AM

All-

I am going to go biking this Saturday and want to try the RCP trail and have some questions:

1. How do I get there from the Mt. Vernon Trail while avoiding riding in traffic?

2. Is the RCP trail 100% paved?

3. How far does it go?

4. Is there anything special I should know or be prepared for?

Thanks!!

-Brad

dsgrunning's ravatar dsgrunning    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 1334
RE: Request for Info: Rock Creek Park Directions
POSTED: 5/27/10 11:46 AM

1. How do I get there from the Mt. Vernon Trail while avoiding riding in traffic?
>> Go to GTown and use Canal road. At the end of Canal Rd there is an exit ramp to the right side of the road. Take that ramp and it will put you on the trail toward the zoo. Ride on the path for about 3-4 miles and you will get to the gate of the zoo. At that point, you can continue on the path to get to Pierce Mill or go on Beach Drive. I usually take Beach Drive at that point since it's the 60 mph drivers have slowed down and used other exits.

On the way back, I just stay on Beach until the Kennedy Center. Visibility going toward Rock Creek seems a bit less than going away from it. I feel safer leaving Rock Creek and staying on the road as opposed to the path. You can also get to Beach via Falls/River Road but that's a longer trek.

2. Is the RCP trail 100% paved?
>>> Yes. It's a major commuter route during the work day.

3. How far does it go?
>>> Pierce Mill to a dead end and back is a 25 mile round trip

4. Is there anything special I should know or be prepared for?
>>> If you want to use a restroom with flushing toilets and running water, picnic area #10 is your last chance to do so. It's about 5 miles from Pierce Mill. There are a few gates that are down and a few traffic lights along the way but it's a pretty nice ride. You can go through those gates at 15 mph and feel pretty safe doing so without having to unclip. They are just there to prevent cars from coming through.

Tuan

urbanlumberjack's ravatar urbanlumberjack    JOINED: 3/25/09    POSTS: 143
RE: Request for Info: Rock Creek Park Directions
POSTED: 5/27/10 2:17 PM

To add to what Tuan said, if you are comfortable on the road I would get off the trail at beach drive. beach drive is mostly closed to cars, and at the point it is no longer closed (right before you cross east-west highway) there are few cars and lots of bikers, just stay on the side of the road. from here you can go miles and miles into maryland with light traffic. the actual RCP trail can be a bit crowded and I generally try to stay off it (and other commuter trails) during training rides.

bad ford's ravatar bad ford    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 186
RE: Request for Info: Rock Creek Park Directions
POSTED: 5/27/10 2:23 PM

Thanks for the good info. I am not sure whether I'll stay on the trail or go Beach Road, but now I at least know where to turn and what to expect.

When I ride my bike, it usually doesn't matter how crowded it is, unless the runners start to pass me.

urbanlumberjack's ravatar urbanlumberjack    JOINED: 3/25/09    POSTS: 143
RE: Request for Info: Rock Creek Park Directions
POSTED: 5/27/10 2:26 PM

I actually rode out to Rockville the other day and got on the RCP trail at the end of Beach Road for another 6-7 miles and it was actually really nice.

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