MTB Project Logo

New Light Loop

 4.0 (21)
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

7.4 Miles 11.9 Kilometers



568' 173 m


-570' -174 m



Avg Grade (2°)


Max Grade (7°)

374' 114 m


263' 80 m


Shared By Rob Baker


Bad / Closed 7 days ago
"Bicycle riding is allowed only in designated areas from May 15th - August 31 and only on Sundays from Sept 1st - May 14th." History

Getting forecast...

A loop of the trails at New Light, which are more technical than most in the Triangle.

Rob Baker

Dogs No Dogs

Features eMTB allowed

Only open Sundays from September 1 through May 15. Open everyday from May 15 to August 31.


A great loop to get out on some of the best trails at the New Light Trail System.

Need to Know

Please DON'T POACH it when it is closed.


The First Loop section starts to the right of the gate and can be muddy with roots as it is in the deep, shady woods with no wind. It's a pretty aerobic start to the ride. However, the rest of New Light dries out very fast because the rest is more gravel, sand, and rock combo and it never closes for rain. At the end of First Loop, you turn left on the fire road and then the Lake Downfall starts on the right.

The Lake Downfall section starts with a small climb to a cool little downhill with a small jump. Further down the trail is a rutted out downhill where there used to be a bridge, but it has fallen down and a gap jump built in front of it. However, there is a ride-around on the left. There's also a log pile type obstacle after that and the trail skirts the lake.

After crossing another fire road, you'll be on Sig's Loop, which is similar to Lake Downfall but with more vertical ascents and descents including the switchbacks with a downhill after some jumps. Further down the trail is a log to try and ride left to right, or drop off of or hit the jump on the left of the stump. There are also several rock piles to ride over.

After that is The Gaunlet (what the trail is known for), a tough, rocky climb and a rocky descent.

Just before the The Gaunlet rock climb and after you'll see another trail on the right called Way In Way Out. It's often thick with bushes in the summer because it is a very open forest there, but it's a nice loop that adds more miles and has some fun sections to it.

After finishing this, you'll hit another fire road, turn left and the Easy Street is on the right. This takes you back to the parking lot and there is a sign there.

For the most part, New Light is all one big loop with the exception of the extra Way In Way Out loop off The Gaunlet. In general, there are plenty of obstacles and rocks and some good downhill sections. It is considered the most difficult trail in the triangle.


You & This Featured Ride

Rate Quality

   Clear Rating

Rate Difficulty

Share This Ride

Your Check-Ins


Sep 20, 2018
Matt Rothkopf
Aug 11, 2018
Stacey Vaughan
Jul 14, 2018
Nicholas Feliciano
The gauntlet almost made me not like this trail. This is the hardest section with lots of big rocks. Other then that this trail somewhat smooth.
Jun 23, 2018
Spencer Jones
Over grown around sigs loop tons of weed wacking wear bug spray 7.4mi
Jun 15, 2018
Michael Zembek
Should’ve allowed myself more time to check out the different trails, but ended up hitting the first loop which has a lot of steep uphill climbs. 4.8mi
May 18, 2018
Jesse Patton
May 15, 2018
Don Childrey
Jan 21, 2018
JuanCarlos JCV
7.7mi — 1h 35m

Stewarded By

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 21 votes


  4.0 from 21 votes
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
2 Star
1 Star


172 Views Last Month
5,892 Since Jun 27, 2016
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

Rad trails. Rode there yesterday for the first time and it was wet muddy slick and perfect. They're not marked well once you're on them, except for a trail sign on the first part and same random tape tied around trees here and there. No big deal though because essentially it's one big loop and you'll end up back at the parking lot eventually. Trails make good use of the terrain around Falls Lake. Don't expect perfect groomed singletrack. Lots of little stream crossings and fallen trees to ride over on the first half. There are a couple tiny tabletops and small gap jumps. The second half is super rocky. Good stuff. Only thing missing are bigger and better jumps. Looking forward to riding it when it's dry. Apr 9, 2018
Massively technical, avoid if you're a novice. Many logovers and rock gardens. My inexperienced self walked 3/4 of this trail. Be wary of many rutted out downhills and the fallen bridge gap, it sneaks up on you! There is a ride around though. Would hate to see some eat it there as it's a decently sized fall. Sep 23, 2018
Some notes from riding here for the first time. 1. The driving directions linked above took me to a dead end in a nearby housing development. You actually want to map to the google maps marker named New Light Trails. 2. The only trail marked with a name placard was First Loop. The other trails didn't have name placards on them. I tried to bail to a doubletrack trail back to the parking lot since I was under a time constraint, but I ended up not where I expected. 3. The trails in the loops farthest from the parking are super fun in a technical way. Lots of logs and rocks to roll over. It's as good as technical riding gets minus really steep downhills and north shore style features. Feb 11, 2019

MTB Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Mountain Bike

MTB Project is supported by

Support Your Local IMBA Chapter