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Speed Skating Forum Most of the discussions in this forum will be about inline speed skating but discussions about ice speed skating and quad roller speed skating are also welcome.

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Old November 15th, 2006, 03:17 AM   #21
KGskate
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Default Dismal Swamp Canal Trail

This is a great thread--As much as I hold in awe those among us who think nothing of getting their workout in downtown traffic, for most people serious fitness or speed skating will depend on having somewhere reasonably flat, closed to cars, and not too crowded.

My local spot is the Dismal Swamp Canal Trail. It is a former road that has been supplanted by a new highway. There is a parking area just off the intersection of George Washington Hwy and the new Hwy 17. It is 16 miles out and back running along the Great Dismal Swamp Canal in Chesapeake Virginia. At some point in the future it is supposed to be extended down into N. Carolina. It is flat, wide, and mostly straight. The road surface is very good, although this time of year there are a lot of leaves on the road in a few places. There are no cross-streets and it is never crowded.

There are a couple of short sections where cars are allowed because of a few isolated farmhouses and a boat ramp for the canal, but there is never any traffic. The only problem is the gates that mark these sections and require a little slowing down to get around. Here are a few pictures taken a couple of months ago showing the entrance, the road, and the gates.

http://picasaweb.google.com/kurttg/D...ampCanalTrail/
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Old November 15th, 2006, 08:55 AM   #22
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KGskate wrote:
Quote:
My local spot is the Dismal Swamp Canal Trail. ... It is 16 miles out and back running along the Great Dismal Swamp Canal in Chesapeake Virginia. ... It is flat, wide, and mostly straight. The road surface is very good, although this time of year there are a lot of leaves on the road in a few places. There are no cross-streets and it is never crowded.
ya know, the only problem with a trail like that is ..... nothing. Not a darn thing. Lucky you. I'm jealous. Hope you get some bikers as they're fun for chasing down.

Geri
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Old November 15th, 2006, 12:01 PM   #23
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I have 2 favorites, unfortunately they're both at least 30 minutes away, but definitely worth the trip...

#1 - East Bay bike trail, East Providence to Windsor, RI
14.5 mile rail to trail conversion. Mostly flat and smooth. Great trail for getting leg training in, since you're usually faced with a head wind some of the distance. It follows the river for 5 of the 14 miles.

#2 - Nashua River Rail Trail, Ayer, MA to Nashua, NH
13 mile (and growing) long, smooth rail to trail conversion. This trial differs from most in the area due to small, rolling hills. Mostly tree-covered, this trail is made for speed.
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Old November 15th, 2006, 04:53 PM   #24
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So many trails ... so many places ... isn't this great!

Chuck, I lived in E. Providence in the early 60's while in under-graduate school. I worked for the Industrial National Bank (then, now...?). It was the building Superman flew around at the opening of the original serial movies and TV shows. I spent time in Barrington, RI too. Any trails in that area? The wife and I are planning a trip east next year.

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Old November 16th, 2006, 06:43 PM   #25
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I have three big ones:

Hain's Point in DC: It's a dead flat 3 mile loop with nice pavement. The speed team works out there, so there's a fast paceline to skate with.

BWI Airport loop + B+A trail: The loop is nice - 10 miles or so, ok paving, some hills. The B+A trail is frustrating in that there are so many road crossing.

Calvert Cliffs: I live about 2 miles from this:
http://www.routeslip.com/map.php?map=7754

Ok pavement, quite hilly, mostly sholders or no-lane roads. Good for steady distance and hill work. I hit a subset of that route, either on skates or bike, pretty much every weekend.

Dev
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Old November 24th, 2006, 02:15 AM   #26
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I skate at Piedmont Park in Atlanta after work on Tuesdays and Fridays usually doing 10 miles(rotating between the flat lower path and the slightly elevated upper path). When my wife lets me I'll do 20+ miles on the Silver Comet. I wish I lived nearer to the Silver Comet. I would probably do that 2 - 3 times a week if I did. I have skated on the paths at the Carter Center also and they are pretty nice but kinda scary skating by yourself late in the afternoon.
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Old April 23rd, 2007, 05:34 PM   #27
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Default Virginia skating places - watch the spelling

All the post about training places sound great.

Does anyone have one for the Virginia Beach area. I usually vacation down there and visit family at the same time. ALWAYS bring my skates to do some early morning session on the boardwalk while the wife sleeps late.

But I would like to do more than just skate back and forth. Trying to do 30 miles on a 3 mile stretch gets boring.

Thanks
T
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Old April 23rd, 2007, 06:37 PM   #28
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Hi guys, the inline planet has a great skate route mapper, you can either map your favorite route, or just check for routes where you want to go!

here is the link:

http://www.inlineplanet.com/maps/framesearch.php

Francisco Ramirez
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Old April 23rd, 2007, 07:58 PM   #29
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Quote:
With a pastoral setting located on Carson River Road here in Markleeville CA 96120.
Hey OneWheelSkate,

I'll definitely try out your training route!
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Old April 24th, 2007, 12:51 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tapper View Post
All the post about training places sound great.

Does anyone have one for the Virginia Beach area. I usually vacation down there and visit family at the same time. ALWAYS bring my skates to do some early morning session on the boardwalk while the wife sleeps late.

But I would like to do more than just skate back and forth. Trying to do 30 miles on a 3 mile stretch gets boring.

Thanks
T
I lived in Norfolk for 5 years, and I agree that the VA Beach boardwalk gets old after a while. The good news is, there are ways to extend your skate from there. At the north end of the boardwalk, if you cut inland on 40th Street to Pacific Ave., you can continue north on the bike route that runs along a side street parallel to the main road. At 64th Street, you can head up into the park (I forget the name) and take the access road about 2 miles to the boat launch area before turning back. It's a nice opportunity for much-needed shade on a hot summer day, but watch out for the bugs! Continuing north on the side street, you'll come to a point where the road ends and the bike route crosses the main road. Continue here, and you'll wind up at Fort Story. The guards may stop you on the way in, but it's a common fitness route for cyclists and they most likely will let you pass. There's a nice network of little-traveled roads on the base, and there even are a couple of decent hills(!).

At the south end of the path, you can continue over the inlet bridge at 5th or 6th Street, and cut through the side street then follow the bike route signs to a little neighborhood of beach houses with very little traffic. Be aware that you can build up a deceptive amount of speed coming down the north side of the inlet bridge!

I hope this helps.

----Scott
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Old April 24th, 2007, 12:17 PM   #31
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Scott,

Thanks for the helpfull hint. I will check it out and see if what happens.


Tom.
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