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  1. #1
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    New question here. Big Dam Bridge Trail Little Rock Question

    Is the Big Dam Bridge Trail a trail from roads from downtown to the bridge? If not, is the Trail route well marked with signs on the route? Does it have bike lanes at least on the roads?

    Also does the Big Dam Bridge Trail run all the way to Pinnacles yet? Is it at least well signed?

    I'm asking because my family is going to visit LR for the weekend. I'm definitely bringing my bike. If the trails are quiet and traffic free (or at least a bike lane and light on traffic), I will try to talk my family into bringing theirs, too.

    Any must-visit bike shops in Little Rock while I'm there? I don't need anything, but I like to window shop.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Big Dam Bridge Trail Little Rock Question

    The trail is awesome. It's well marked and has a center strip. All paved so its road bike friendly. There are some bridge closings but I don't know the current status. Either way, the western section has plenty of loops and options to tire you out. I would take the family bikes.

  3. #3
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    Big Dam Bridge Trail Little Rock Question

    Chainwheel (West LR) and Spokes (LR) are my favs.

  4. #4
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    The River Trail loops from BDB to downtown LR/NLR on both north and south sides. The NLR side from Clinton bridge to BDB is better marked, more dedicated bike path, and less traffic. (The LR side from downtown to about halfway to BDB is not finished.)

    BDB on to Two Rivers Park and on toward Pinnacle is a great ride with minimal traffic. Watch out for Pinnacle Mountain road section that runs north to south for more traffic.

    If you want some climbing, there is the Fort Roots climb offshoot from the NLR side, and the Pinnacle Mountain State Park, and Overlook near BDB.
    At what point did you decide you needed more than 1 gear?

  5. #5
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    They have just recently been putting out official signage for the Arkansas River Trail (with distances to different places) but I don't know if it's done for the entire River Trail yet. ride_bikes is correct. The North LR side from the Clinton Bridge is better marked to the Big Dam Bridge (BDB) & easier to follow (it's essentially a straight shot along the river). Most of it is a paved multi-use trail with just a little bit of roadway (with a bike lane) thrown in. That road isn't very heavily used by vehicles.

    The LR side from downtown to Rebsamen Park Road is a bit more difficult to navigate. There are signs but it's easy to miss. You have to navigate through several different streets in the downtown part of the city before you get to the paved multi-use trail. For out-of-towners, I would definitely recommend riding the North Little Rock side. It's also a bit more scenic IMO. They both can get you to the Big Dam Bridge.

    From the Big Dam Bridge, you can cross-over to the Little Rock side and continue riding west towards Two Rivers Park. There's a pedestrian bridge at River Mountain Park and that continues out west to Two Rivers Park, and then you can get on County Farm Rd to ride out to Pinnacle Mtn (follow signs for Maumelle Park). County Farm Rd has a bike lane, the N/S portion of Pinnacle Valley Road has a bike path, but past Maumelle Park, the E/W Pinnacle Valley Rd has no shoulder nor bike lane & has some vehicle traffic.

    Another thing to be careful of is that someone threw tacks out on County Farm Rd and/or Pinnacle Valley Rd last weekend and although the county swept the road, people have still gotten flats this week. Be sure to have extra tubes & a pump/CO2!

    I think you can get a map of the AR River Trail system at local bike shops too which should help. I would recommend Chainwheel (West Little Rock - Rodney Parham & I-430) or Spokes (Kavanaugh & Markham) too. Spokes has the added benefit of having a coffee bar.

    Hope you enjoy your time out here & the trails! It's supposed to be hot this weekend too so bring lots of water!

  6. #6
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    We had a lot of fun this weekend. I rode Pinnacles on Saturday morning. There were 3 other riders on the trail. The whole trail was almost one continuous rock garden! It was a nice change of pace from the local flow-y trails, but it kicked my butt. Between the main trail and the bunny trail, I drank almost 60 oz of water.

    Sunday I rode both sides (LR and NLR) of the River Trail by myself. Then my wife drove all 3 of us up to Murray Park. She ran an out and back from Murray Park across the Big Dam Bridge and back. My son and I headed across the BDB, along the NLR side of the River Trail, back across the Clinton Bridge and back to our hotel (Comfort Inn near the Clinton Library).

    This morning I rode the length of the River Trail on the NLR side and then rode the Pfeiffer Loop, thinking that would connect me to the Burns Park trails. When I looked at the map after the ride, I was too far west. I should have headed north at the dog park or the soccer fields. I also rode up to the top of the quarry from the Emerald Park sign.

    We stopped at the little bike rental/Gatorade stop near the Clinton Library. Dave seems like a nice guy. Nice to have a little rest stop there. I was also impressed with the bike maintenance stations on either end of the River Trail and all the water fountains.

    About 55 miles of riding this weekend.

    Thanks for the suggestions.

    The coffee at Spokes was good as was my discussion with Cynthia there.

  7. #7
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    Very cool! Glad you guys enjoyed your time here. Yeah, you missed the mtb trails at Burns Park like you thought - you have to ride up the hill from the soccer fields (or take the gravel road by the golf course). But that's just a reason for you to come back, right?

    The trail at Pinnacle Mtn you rode (Jackfork) was built by some good friends of mine. It's definitely a trail to get a workout on, not really to "enjoy" (as far as flow). If you rode that and Emerald, you probably did some of the harder trails in the city.

    Glad you got to meet some locals too! David Fike is a real nice guy and Cynthia was just recently hired at Spokes and has been a big help! Hope you'll come back!

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