This is a highly underrated trail system between Kingston and Oak Ridge located on the Department of Energy Reservation. The trails pass through ridge-top woodlands, karst bluffs covered in mountain laurel, and creek-side habitats. The area is more known for its gravel roads then singletrack; Black Oak Ridge offers the unsuspecting mountain biker a delightful surprise of singletrack if they are willing to do some gravel connections and a bit of double-backing by using a few trails as a climb and a descent and vise versus.
Another plus for the area is its ability to drain water, making it a great place to ride after any recent rainfall.
From the Dyllis Orchard Road Hiking Trail parking area, climb up Dyllis Orchard Road
and take a right on Twisted Beech
trail. A very short, fun, descent and at the beginning of a mild climb bear right at the Y to stay on Twisted Beech
, you'll be coming down from the unmarked Gheen Trail
that continues straight at the end of the ride. Pass the namesake Twisted Beech tree and start a fun short-lived descent through a few switchbacks to a gravel road.
Climb this steep Twisted Beech Road
to the left, the only option, up the hill to a powerline cut and see this road Y's into West Ridge Road. Continue straight past the powerline cut and take an immediate left into Gheen Trail
. Climb this trail through a set of switchbacks and then it levels off a bit before becoming a roller coaster ride through the trees, passing through an old pipeline cut and through the trees again before popping out on another gravel road.
Take a left and an immediate right onto the gravel Dyllis Orchard Road
. Follow this for approximately 2.0 miles and turn left downhill onto the signed Dove Trail
. Dove Trail
can be super fast and fun for the advanced rider while still offering plenty of fun for the beginner (while not feeling over their head). Pop out on the Powerline Road Connector
and turn right. You'll descend for an 0.15 miles before coming to the bottom end of Dyllis Orchard Road
to your left. Continue straight and up the steep hill of the Powerline Road Connector
to intersect the top end of Dyllis Orchard Road
. Take a left, watching for views off to the right. Pass another gravel road to the left and West Ridge Road to the right and start down a super fast section of Dyllis Orchard Road
Just beyond the powerline cut, watch out for the signed Fox Trail
on the left. Take a left on Fox Trail
for a short jog downhill followed by a fast-paced climb and another descent all the way to the bottom with a few power climbs through the descent and a fun tree dodging trail experience. Fox Trail
ends in about 1.5 miles, at the bottom of Dyllis Orchard Road
. Take a left and follow this steep road up and down the ridges, ignoring the gravel roads to the left until you dead end into the Powerline Road Connector
you rode earlier.
Take a right up the hill and take a left onto Dove Trail
. Climb Dove Trail
to the intersection with Dyllis Orchard Road
and take a right. Go approximately 2.0 miles and take a left onto the unmarked gravel connector road and take a right onto Gheen Trail
. Follow Gheen Trail
to West Ridge Road and take a hard right, passing the gravel road from Twisted Beech
. Just beyond the Powerline
cut take a right into the forest on the continuation of Gheen Trail
. Super fast and flowing, the bottom of this trail feels like a four cross course in the forest.
Cross a gravel road to continue on singletrack and blow by the left turn to Twisted Oak trail to a short climb back up to Dyllis Orchard Road
. Take a left and descend to the parking lot.