Photo courtesy of MTB Project.
Not all great rides have to be epic death marches. Fort Clinch State Park, just north of Jacksonville, Florida, offers a fun and flowing loop that offers a mere 80 feet of elevation gain in 5.4 miles. Take a look at the elevation chart and you’ll see a low elevation of just three feet above sea level, topping out at 27 feet.
But this intermedia ride is just a stone’s throw from the beach. The route features a mixed forest of mossy oak, pine and palmetto. The trail is not overly technical but does include some tight, twisting sections and some steep ups and downs.
After you’ve finished riding, be sure to check out the one of the most well preserved 19th century forts in the United States, which was rebuilt and preserved by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s.
Be sure to check out all the details on MTB Project.
Photo courtesy of MTB Project.
Photos by ositoking
- Difficulty: Advanced
- Length: 14 miles
- Average Singletracks.com Rating: 4.67 out of 5 stars.
The skinny: Alafia River State Park trails are IMBA Epic certified. The park offers a wide range of trail difficulties, from novice to intermediate to advanced to highly-advanced sections. Due to the park’s location on an abandoned phosphate mine, the topography is much more convoluted and varied than you would normally find in Florida. To cross the swampy ditches, the trail builders have incorporated numerous bridges and creative trail building techniques, making Alafia unique and endlessly entertaining.
The trailhead parking lot offers bathrooms with hot water, bicycle-rinsing stations, shaded pavilions, a volleyball net, and a playground.
Description added by Adventurecycling. Read more about Alafia River here.
I didn’t expect to find such a nice trail system in Florida. Trails are well maintained and well built. Not very flowy, but rich in technical sections. Packed sandy trails gives nice traction…. enjoy. —bulletprooftiger
Apart from Copper Harbor, Michigan, this is my favorite course to date. Moonscape/RollerCoaster/Rabbit Ears/Gatorback are all awesome challenges with lots of ups and downs and technical aspects. Who would think that Florida would have such a great course? I consider myself an advanced intermediate and had a lot of fun on this course and a great cardio workout. If you find yourself near Tampa with a few hours to burn (literally) you won’t be disappointed. Bring plenty of water… rode in April and it was 90F. Just added to the fun! —grahamt
Alafia’s trails are in the best shape they have been in a long time, with Jeff the trail boss constantly doing trail work with his wife and some crew every week. It just keeps getting better and better. Me and a few of my riding friends have actually been adding a few new additions to the trails recently, like on North Creek and Roller Coaster, which include nice banked berms, pump bumps, and a few double jumps, with many more to follow in the future. And also Jeff and his crew have started on a completely new trail extension off of North Creek that’s going to be called Devils Island, which should turn out to be a great addition to that already super fun trail. So if you ride this trail system at Alafia, you’ll have new and improved options each week that will be added for you to ride!!! —peresite70
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