Old Stretch Road, Viking Trail Loop – Biking at Berry College

October 4, 2010
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Difficulty: Easy

Length: 6-7 mile loop

This past weekend I found a great biking loop for those interested in just getting into biking in the Northwest Georgia area.

At Berry College, I was bringing my spouse along for her first bike ride since she was probably 7 years old, and so I needed to find a ride that was relatively flat.  The Old Stretch road near Berry’s now dry lake bed was an excellent easy ride. Here’s how I made it a looped ride.

I drove my bikes out to the Mountain Campus and parked over in the parking lot below Frost Chapel.

We then took the bikes down a small pathway to the left of the hill that Frost Chapel is built on. The small pathway will go by two dilapitated sheds/buildings.  After riding down this trail for a few hundred yards, you cross a small wooden bridge and come out into an open field. On the opposite end of this field are two buildings. From the field, I turned right and crossed over field and Stretch Road (the road you drive to get to Mountain campus), and enter onto Viking Trail.

Entrance to Viking Trail

Viking Trail is a paved pathway that runs parallel to Stretch Road for pedestrians and cyclists. The trail is approximately 3 miles long.   The Viking Trail is a very easy ride, although not that scenic. While riding you cannot see the paved Stretch Road, but can hear traffic along it. It is relatively flat, with only a few short climbing hills.  There are electrical poles running beside the paved pathway with decreasing numbers on them.  When you reach the telephone pole with the number “3″ on it, turn left, cross old stretch road.

Be aware here…there are two trails that travel by the old lake. If you are facing the lake bed from Stretch road, Take the trail to the right of the lake bed, not the one to the left of the lake bed.

Entry Looks Like This

Entry to Old Stretch Looks Like This

This pathway will follow an old dirt road, cross an old stone bridge and travel through a wooded area. Make sure not to take the left turn to circle the lake, or you will end up back on Stretch Road. While the path is not all that exciting it is a good beginning ride for those cyclist not yet used to the rougher terrain. The dirt road will eventually take you past a log cabin home, and then exit back into the parking lot.

Directions:

1. Enter Berry College along Highway 27 in Rome, Georgia.

2. Take the 2nd Right on the roundabout and follow the rod the the next right.

3. Take the next right to the stop sign and turn left onto stretch road.

4. Follow Stretch road for approximately 3 miles to the Mountain Campus.

5. Take the first paved left and follow to the parking lot below Frost Chapel.

6. The Entrance to the loop is along a small path beside the hill that Frost Chapel is on (not the dirt road behind frost, but the path to the left of dirt road).

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