National Trails Day is celebrated across the country on the first Saturday of June each year. Based on feedback from bikers and hikers, the Town of Cary is recommending seven of its greenways to enjoy on Sat., June 7. The Town maintains just over 70 miles of greenway trails that connect businesses, neighborhoods and recreation facilities throughout Cary. Each of the following greenways has an asphalt surface and is open from dawn to dusk.
Black Creek Greenway at Lake Crabtree (photo courtesy Town of Cary)
Best Greenway for Running Errands: Black Creek Greenway
Totaling seven miles long, the Black Green Greenway is Cary’s longest greenway. Stretching from Old Reedy Creek Road in northern Cary and emptying into Bond Park in central Cary, Black Creek winds alongside shopping centers, restaurants, schools, subdivisions and employers.
Top Fido-Friendly Greenway: Northwoods Greenway
Originating at Northwoods Elementary School on Chapel Hill Road, Northwoods Greenway is slightly under one mile long and connects to Godbold Park on NW Maynard Road, home to Cary’s only off-leash dog park. Annual and daily passes to the Dog Park can be purchased at any Cary community center.
Best Greenway with a View: Symphony Lake Greenway
Circling Cary’s Booth Amphitheatre, the Symphony Lake Greenway is 1.8 miles of lakeview running at its finest. Earlier this year, the Town installed a 12-foot wide pedestrian bridge to better accommodate the foot traffic at Symphony Lake. The greenway is also critical to the annual Cary Road Race, held every April.
Best Greenway to Break a Sweat: American Tobacco Trail
Cary’s only trail in Chatham County, the American Tobacco Trail totals 23 miles long through Durham, Wake and Chatham counties, with nearly five miles in Cary. The rail-trail in this section passes through woodland, with occasional views of houses, farm fields, ponds and creeks. Marathon training? The American Tobacco Trail is home to Cary’s only marathon, held annually in March.
Best Greenway to Go West: White Oak Creek Greenway
Running or biking west? The White Oak Creek Greenway consists of trail segments that extend from Bond Park to Green Level Church Road, a combined distance of 4.7 miles. Paired with the Black Creek Greenway, the White Oak Creek Greenway represents one of two of the Town’s most important regional greenways. Once connected, these two trails will extend over a distance of 14 miles and link to the American Tobacco Trail, Durham, Bond Park, Lake Crabtree County Park, Umstead State Park, and Raleigh. For now, the trail crosses I-540, NC 55, Davis Drive and SW Cary Parkway.
Greenway with Artistic Flair: Hinshaw Greenway
Connecting Maynard Drive to Marla Dorrel Park, the Hinshaw Greenway boasts a 1.66 mile walk showcasing four pieces of public art. Crossing US Hwy 1/64 on a pedestrian bridge is the site of a public art installation, Bowstrings Vines. Remaining art installations are located where the greenway meets Marla Dorrel Park and include Botanical Benches, Oracle/Dinosaur Benches, and KATAL Dragon.
Best Greenway for Serious Shade: Trails at Hemlock Bluffs
Technically not a greenway, the loop trails at Hemlock Bluffs offer breathtaking views of the hundreds of trees that make up Cary’s treasured Hemlock Bluffs. Trails total over 3.5 miles, with multiple elevation changes and nearly 150 stairs to climb.
Share Your Trails Day Ride or Walk
The Town of Cary estimates about one million people use Cary’s greenway system each year. Planning to enjoy a Town of Cary greenway on Saturday in honor of National Trails Day? Share a photo of your favorite greenway using #CaryNTD. The Town of Cary maintains the following social media accounts: www.twitter.com/TOC_Fun and www.facebook.com/TownofCaryNC. To find the greenway closest to you, search “Bike and Hike Map” at www.townofcary.org or visit a Town of Cary staffed facility; for more on Cary’s greenway system, search “Greenways” at www.townofcary.org or call (919) 469-4061.