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Jan 15

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Destination Trails

In a recent post on the River Mountain Loop Trail blog, RMLTMan wrote an excellent explanation as to why he thought the RMLT was a destination trail. It got me wondering if there is a set definition out there for a destination trail.

Here are some of the criteria for a destination trail:

  • length – The trail should be over 20 miles long.
  • scenery – The trail should have scenic appeal of one kind or another.
  • accessibility – The trail should be maintained so that a wide variety of guests can use it.
  • attractions – The trail should have certain characteristics to draw tourists such as tunnels, trestles, wildflowers, spectacular views, a distinct landscape, regional characteristics, historical significance, points-of-interest, unique design or construction, water feature, or some other reason that would attract people to visit the trail.
  • nearby attractions – In addition to the trail’s inherent attractions it should also other reasons, nearby, to visit the area. (monuments, parks, architectural structures, waterfalls, mountains, etc.)
  • facilities – The trail should have at least the basics like parking and restrooms. It is also desirable for it to have water, educational signage, and campgrounds or access to lodging.

Mount Vernon Trail with D.C. monuments

Some examples of great destination trails include:

Of course there are others, but as for the River Mountain Loop Trail?
I absolutely think it is a destination trail, and I will be visiting it within the next month.

Permanent link to this article: http://trailsnet.com/2011/01/15/destination-trails/

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  1. Bike Prairie Spirit

    I would recommend the Katy Trail in Missouri. It's 225 miles long with a small town about every 10 miles. Tons of B&B's and most often the trail is immediately beside the Missouri River.

    The fact that it also goes right through Missouri wine country should have no effect on you trip.

    If you want more info, check out bikekatytrail.com (I am not affiliated). I have done the trail twice with small groups and am looking forward to going back this year.

    Sam

  2. trailsnet

    Good suggestion, Sam!!

    From what I've heard, the Katy Trail may be the ultimate destination trail. I am definitely looking forward to riding it.

    If you have any lodging suggestions, I'd love to hear them.

    What kind of groups did you ride with? Were they informal gatherings or active travel companies? I thought about doing the Katy with Adventure Cycling, but their schedule didn't match mine.

  3. Bike Prairie Spirit

    I just talked a group of friends to do it. None of them had done anything like it before, although 2 were joggers.

    Hermann is pretty much a must stay. It seems like every other house is a B&B. There are also 4 wineries in town,

    I really enjoyed the Wine Valley Inn and Birk's Gasthaus in Hermann. Let me know what other towns you are interested in and I will tell you what I know.

    Also consider Rocheport.

    My personal favorite place is the Blumenhof Winery in Dutzow. It is an extremely nice stopping place.

    Sam

  4. trailsnet

    That trail is sounding better every minute.

  5. trailsnet

    That trail is sounding better every minute.

  6. Bike Prairie Spirit

    I would recommend the Katy Trail in Missouri. It's 225 miles long with a small town about every 10 miles. Tons of B&B's and most often the trail is immediately beside the Missouri River.

    The fact that it also goes right through Missouri wine country should have no effect on you trip.

    If you want more info, check out bikekatytrail.com (I am not affiliated). I have done the trail twice with small groups and am looking forward to going back this year.

    Sam

  1. Trailsnet has trail information about bike trails, hiking trails, running trails & more.

    […] is one of the leading websites for finding destination trails and active travel vacation destinations. Now, in addition to pointing you to the best long-distance […]

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