Friday, September 30, 2011

Inverness and the Withlacoochee State Trail

Our first ride of the year will be the annual fall ride on the Withlacoochee State Trail in Inverness, Florida. 

Inverness.  A quiet small town of 7000 or so in northeast central Florida.  It was settled in the 1860s.  A century later Elvis Presley visited to make the film "Follow That Dream."  That's about it for highlights of town history.  The historic downtown area centers on the county courthouse and an assortment of attractive historic buildings.  The Withlacoochee State Trail runs just behind the courthouse.  There are picturesque water views nearby (in pretty much any direction).  Think sleepy southern town with tons of oaks and pines dripping heavily with Spanish moss.

The Withlacoochee State Trail is a paved, 46-mile long former railroad corridor.  It has a popular annual bike ride, usually scheduled for the first Sunday in October. Riders can travel as little as one mile to as much as 100 miles along the Trail, which is mostly flat with gentle hills. Registration proceeds help provide enhancements to the Trail.

Sag stops along the way will provide water, sports drinks and food.  The fun of this ride is the food.  There are the usual things: bananas, orange wedges, peanut butter, and bagels.  But there are more fun stuff than at other rides.  Interesting sweets!  Neat special cookie treats.  Everything from the light continental breakfast, to the sag stops, to the light post ride lunch is provided by the Trail support group in a enthusiastic way.

Visit for the link "Bike Ride in October."  There is no mass start.  This is a fabulous beginning of season ride for riders of all types and interests.  It is very family friendly.  (We were also told about a good ride on this trail in March.  Check out .)