Skip to Content
RECREATION PLANNING

Trail Users

There are many opportunities for different trail users to enjoy trails on public lands. Many user groups support land managers by maintaining and monitoring the trail system. Others have the skills needed to help design and build the trails. All users can give back by leaving no trace and patronizing the businesses that support the trails.

Bicycling

  • Mountain Bicycling
    The International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) has been a leader in setting standards for mountain bicycling around the world. IMBA sponsors trail construction field schools to help users and land managers learn to build trails that are safe to use and gentle on the environment. User ethics and responsibilities, as well as trail construction techniques, are disseminated through publications and training seminars. Many mountain bicycling clubs have formed throughout the state and are employing IMBA's teachings in working with their public land managers to develop trail systems. Mountain Bike Virginia is the statewide organization.
  • Street Bicycling
  • BikeWalk Virginia and the Virginia Bicycling Federation work together to advocate for the interests of cyclists across the state. They support a number of local bike clubs and chapters to provide information and advocacy, lead organized rides, and promote public safety. The Virginia Department of Transportation's Bicycle and Pedestrian Program strives to make bicycling and walking safer and more convenient for all Virginians. The program coordinator is based in the Transportation and Mobility Planning Division in the Richmond central office, and there is a coordinator in each of the nine VDOT district offices.
  • Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center

Hiking

Hiking The American Hiking Society advocates for the interests of hikers in Virginia as well as the rest of the nation. Although there is no statewide hiking organization, a number of active local and regional trail clubs maintain sections of the Appalachian Trail and other hiking trails across the Commonwealth. The Virginia Volksport Association promotes the spirit of walking and events designed to appeal to all ages.

Horseback

Horseback trail riding is an increasingly popular recreational activity among Virginia horseback riders. The Virginia Horse Council appointed a committee to establish direction and coordination of statewide equestrian trail development and maintenance activities. Participating clubs have formed working relationships with public and private land managers across the state to improve and maintain existing trails, as well as to establish new trail riding opportunities. The results of this successful initiative can be seen in national forests, many state parks, state forests and local parks.

Motorized trails

The Virginia Off-Highway Vehicle Coalition represents the interests of OHV users to establish and improve OHV opportunities in Virginia through education, responsible land use, environmental sustainability, and the promotion of safe, friendly, family-oriented recreation. The Virginia Four- Wheel Drive Association is a family- oriented, nonprofit organization promoting safe, responsible and fun four wheeling. These groups are interested in developing more trails for legal off-road use, particularly in the Eastern part of Virginia. In Western Virginia, The U.S. Forest Service provides many opportunities for OHV riding in our National Forests.

Other trail groups