Ride, Run, Paddle the Tour de Fall Line

September 10, 2015 · 1 minute read
Buttermilk Trail will be part of the course for the 50-miler of Saturday's Tour de Fall Line. Credit: Phil Riggan

Buttermilk Trail will be part of the course for the 50-miler of Saturday’s Tour de Fall Line. Credit: Phil Riggan

If you run, bike or paddle on and around the James River in Central Virginia, chances are you’ve benefitted from the work of the James River Outdoor Coalition and RVA Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts. The former is made up mostly of paddlers; the latter of mountain bikers. But their effect on the outdoor recreation landscape goes beyond their chosen recreational pursuits. Ever taken your boat out at 14th Street? JROC helped fund and build that. Ever walked your dog along the switchbacking, intricate-stonework and cool-arched-bridge section of the Buttermilk Trail? RVA MORE helped fund and build that.

So, if you intended to run, bike or paddle this weekend anyway, why not do it in a way that aids those groups?

On Saturday, the second annual Tour de Fall Line goes off from Mayo Island in downtown Richmond. The event — featuring multi-distance bike rides, a group trail run and group paddle — is a celebration of what we have here in Richmond: World class singletrack and whitewater in an urban environment. All proceeds go toward these groups that work so hard to maintain these amenities.

Last year, Richmond MORE’s Michael Taliaferro told me, they had about 150 people sign up for the bike rides and about a dozen do the paddle. This year they’ve added a trail run.

TDFL_Logo_Main“The paddle is a full run of the entire fall line,” he said. “It starts at 9 a.m. and we have room for 30 people on rafts. The cost is $40 which includes the paddle, beer afterward, and food from Lee’s Fried Chicken (or Mellow Mushroom for vegetarians).
The run leaves at 10:30 a.m., and is around six miles. It departs Mayo Island and goes to the Flood Wall, Slave Trail, and out around the “Poop Loop.”
“It’s a great opportunity for people to run some new trails with some amazing views of the river,” he said.
The bike rides are 50-, 28 and 14 miles. Both the 28 and 50 miler have some very technical sections, Taliaferro said. So be prepared to walk some sections if technical pieces scare you. The 14-mile course is for beginners and will be done as a group ride.
Click here for more information on the events and the afterparty.