Charlotte’s Best Biking Trails

Charlotte is known for a lot. We have a large and rapidly developing brewery scene, being a banking hub with multiple corporate bank offices, our ever-growing skyline, and of course, NASCAR. One thing that isn’t well known about Charlotte, is how rich we are in biking trails. While we fall short compared to other cities like Portland and Chicago, there are tons of options for seasoned cyclists and amateur bikers alike to either break out their road bikes and race along the streets, or strap their mountain bikes to their cars and head out to take on some rough terrain. Wondering which trails are the best to bike in Charlotte?

7Freedom Park

If you’re looking for a more leisurely ride, take a couple of loops around Freedom park! The bike trails that pass through this popular park, are actually a part of The Carolina Thread Trail, a network of trails equaling over 250 miles, that pass through  2 different states, including North Carolina!

6Sherman Branch

This mountain biking trail equals 11.6 miles of a single flowing track, that has riders climbing up 600 feet. While the left side of the trail remains open for more novice mountain bikers, along the right side of the trail, there are some advanced obstacles available  for you to show off your mountain biking skills, or work on some new ones.

5Whitewater Center

Photo from Whitewater Center

One of our most popular features of Charlotte, also happens to house some of the more popular mountain biking trails in the area. With over 40 miles of singletrack biking trails, you can choose your difficulty level based on your abilities. Just a heads up! These trails are open to hikers and runners, so make sure to share the trail and yell before coming around turns!

4BackYard Trails (BYT)

Photo from OrthoCarolina // Roots Rated

This technical mountain biking trail offers a ton of difficult features for more experienced riders. Starting from the parking lot of Sugar Creek Greenway, off of Tyvola Road, you can access different loops to try out including the Marion Diehl loop, and Park Road Park. In total, the trail spans 16.7 miles of pure adrenaline and fun!

3Renaissance Park

If you’re not looking to spend all day biking, and just want a quick ride with a few technical thrills, Renaissance Park is the place to go! With just over 6 miles of singletrack trails, you’ll be able to finish the loop quickly while speeding up some short hills and flying over some fun “whoop-de-doos!

2Little Sugar Creek Greenway

Stretching from Brandywine Road to 7th Street in Elizabeth, Little Sugar Creek Greenway is the perfect 4 mile stretch to get out and stretch your pedals. This easy, paved path, is what I like to call “the bunny hill” of Charlotte biking, because it’s perfect for beginners or bikers who prefer a smooth ride.

1Rail Trail

Photo from historicsouthend.com

The best trail to walk and/or bike on if you’re trying to see and be seen in Charlotte, is the Rail Trail. This public trail winds through the heart of the city and connects a bunch of different neighborhoods such as, Sedgefield, South End, Brookhill, Dilworth, Wilmore, and Uptown. This is the perfect biking solution if you don’t own your own bike, because there are B-Cycle stations along the way for you to rent a bike for the day. It’s also perfect if you’re wanting to do an easy bike with the potential of stopping to grab some food, or a beverage.

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Amanda is a Charlotte native (not "true" native, but native nonetheless) with a knackfor finding innovative ways to get involved professionally, in Charlotte. She graduated from Appalachian State University with a degree in Health Care Management and has been doing everything but, ever since. With a love for a full schedule, checking off her to-do lists, and being involved in the community, she is always immersed in a new Charlotte-based project, and looking for more ways to do so. Her projects have included: interviewing new bar and restaurant openings for CharlotteNightlife.com, Writing articles for ExploreCLT, Managing the Marketing Department at her Full-Time job at Somerset Apartment Management, a short stint as a casting recruiter for the TV show, Married at First Sight, managing the kickball league for Nakid Social Sports, and most recently becoming a Marketing Intern with SweatNetClt!