Many people are surprised to learn that Long Island has an amazing array of options for mountain bikers. And no, I’m not talking about riding up Route 83 to the top of Bald Hill and back, I’m talking about great trail riding! All of the trails listed here are maintained by CLIMB (Concerned Long Island Mountain Bicyclists), and if you’re just getting into mountain biking or are experienced but didn’t know about them, there’s no better place to start. Check out their website at climbonline.org. There are a number of helpful links, regional maps, trail maps, forums, organized rides, up-to-date trail closings and more!
*Note – Directions are given from the most central point possible with consideration to the easiest route to follow.
A little over eight miles of beginner to intermediate, single track terrain, with an additional 1.5 miles of optional advanced hill climb trails. These trails are managed by the NY State DEC so a DEC permit is required (download the application here). From the LIE, take exit 69 North (Wading River Road) and make a right onto Middle Country Road (Route 25) where the parking lot will be on your left immediately after the Wading River Motel (about ½-mile).
A six-mile beginner to intermediate single track loop with over five miles of additional optional advanced hill climbs. These trails are managed by the Suffolk County Parks department so you’ll have to pay for parking; $2 with a green key or $4 without. From the LIE, take exit 67 (Yaphank Ave) north to Main St. Make a left and take Main St to the end where you’ll make a right onto Yaphank Middle Island Rd. Go about 1.5 miles and the entrance to the park will be on your left.
Over eight miles of beginner to intermediate single track trails maintained by the NY State DEC (permit required). Take the LIE to Exit 70 South (Route 111). Just before you get to Sunrise, take the exit onto Moriches-Riverhead Road and turn left. Take the second option for a U-turn and back-track about ¼-mile where the parking lot will be on your right.
A relatively new option, this track features over five miles of intermediate to advanced trails, with an additional 6 miles of optional advanced loops over difficult terrain. To get here, take the LIE to Nichols Rd north. Make a right onto Mark Tree Rd, and then another right to get onto Route 347 East. Make your first left onto Bell Meade Rd and travel about a mile. The entrance will be on your right (park along the side of the road).
Edgewood Oak Brush Plains Preserve
Deer Park’s 5.5 mile track features both trails and paved roads for beginner to intermediate riders of all ages that are marked with white disc trail markers for mountain bikers. Take the LIE to Commack Rd south (exit 52) and travel about 2.2 miles where you’ll find a parking area on the left hand side. This is a NY State DEC managed preserve so a DEC permit is required.
Glacier Ridge Nature Preserve
8.5 miles of intermediate to advanced trails behind Sachem East High School and Town of Brookhaven Town Hall with a number of options for additional loops of difficult terrain. From the Expressway take exit 63 north (North Ocean Ave) and travel a little over a mile to Bicycle Path. Make a right onto Bicycle Path and then a left onto Independence Hill Dr. Go all the way to the end and park close to the woods. The trail entrance is just to the left of the small white building.
Hither Woods State Park
With over 20 miles of trails, this is the largest and probably the most varied set of trails on this list, with some great views to be had as well. Take 27 east on your way to Montauk and stay left when Old Montauk Hwy forks off to the right. Park in the West Overlook lot and pick up a map at the kiosk to start planning your route. Trails vary from intermediate to advanced (not surprisingly) hilly terrain. There are tons of options so feel free to be adventurous!
This is a long loop (12+ miles) that boasts virtually no flat terrain and is definitely for the intermediate to expert rider. The trail is two-way for the first 3+ miles so you have a little bit of time to decide if it’s too much to handle before there’s no turning back. This trail also connects to the Eastport trails for some optional additional mileage. Take the LIE to exit 70 (Route 111) and head south for about 1.75 miles to Hot Water St. Pass the right turn and cross over the highway to make a left onto Hot Water St where you’ll find a gravel road marking the entrance to the parking lot. Follow the sign for the mountain bike trail head.
This 5 mile one-way loop crosses a number of horse trails so keep an eye out when crossing. The trail is an interesting, hilly, and technical set of intermediate to advanced terrain. To get there, take the LIE to Sunken Meadow Pkwy north and exit onto Pulaski Rd westbound. Drive for a little shy of a mile and make a right onto Bread and Cheese Hollow Rd. Take that for a little more than a mile before you make a left onto Middleville Rd. Bear right immediately to stay on Middleville for about ½-mile where you’ll make a left onto Back Gate Dr (toward the VA hospital) and find the parking lot immediately to the left.
Rocky Point Pine Barrens Preserve
Intermediate and expert riders take the LIE to William Floyd Parkway north and make a left onto Whiskey Rd. Drive about 3.5 miles and make a right onto Rocky Point Rd where the parking lot will be shortly on your left. Beginners and families can take William Floyd all the way to the end and bear left onto 25A. Take the bypass to the left almost all the way where you’ll find another parking and entrance on this side of the preserve. The intermediate and advanced trail offers over 13 miles of one-way riding with about seven miles of optional challenging expert terrain, while the beginner trail offers several miles of riding suitable for just about anyone! DEC permit required.