Grand opening for new Tobacco Trail section

Some of the new trail sections feature a split design - gravel on one side for horses, runners and mountain bikes and a smooth ribbon of pavement for "roadies" on the other.

May 17, 2010 9:51:30 AM PDT
The public is invited to a grand opening of the new section of the American Tobacco Trail June 5.

The location is the Pittard-Sears Road trail crossing at 10 a.m.

Click here for more information

The completion of the latest section of trail means cyclist, horses, and runners have an uninterrupted stretch of trail all the way from south of Highway 64 in the Apex area to Durham County. A bridge is planned over Interstate 40 that would link the southern half of the trail with the paved sections through Durham.

In Chatham County, workers have finished work on two new bridges over Panther Creek and Northeast Creek.

Click here for maps and more info at triangletrails.org

Before the construction, the old railroad trestles used to mark the end of the road for anyone who wanted to run, walk, or ride the trail from southern Durham County through Chatham to Wake.

Headed north, the trail starts south of Highway 64 near Apex and Jordan Lake and continues through Wake County with a packed surface of gravel screenings.

A converted railroad bed, the wide trail features gentle hills and a woodsy route that often offers views of wildlife and natural scenery.

The Wake County section also features three parking areas off Olive Chapel Road, White Oak Church Road, and Wimberly Road. The first two also offer bathrooms.

Chatham County

Once the trail passes into Chatham County, the new sections offer gravel screenings on one side, and a generous 10-foot paved strip for road cyclists and walkers.

Parking is available at three points (see map).

Durham County

Passing into Durham County, the trail changes to mixed gravel and dirt before it ends just south of Interstate 40. There's a parking area and access point off Fayetteville Road just south of the Streets at Southpoint mall.

The plan is to bridge the interstate – the date for completion unknown - and link up with the paved trail that begins at the Southpoint Crossing shopping center on Fayetteville Road and runs all the way to the Durham Bulls Athletic Park downtown.

Read more about the proposed I-40 bridge at bullcityrising.com

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