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Take the Path Less Paved: Off Road Martha’s Vineyard Bike Trails

BY VINEYARD SQUARE HOTEL | 29 July 2018

The road rides on Martha’s Vineyard are ridiculously scenic, but have you ever tried leaving the pavement behind for awhile? We aren’t hiding any gnarly downhill mountain bike courses around here, but there are plenty of forested paths for riders looking for a scenic route that’s more secluded. Explore Martha’s more remote side by venturing through one of these off road bike trails.

 

Take the Path Less Paved: Go Off Road on Martha’s Vineyard Bike Trails

Two people riding bikes on a dirt trail

 

Martha’s Vineyard Bike Rentals

First thing’s first, you’ll need a bike and gear if you don’t bring your own. Visit Martha’s Vineyard Bike Rentals on Main Street in Edgartown for mountain bikes, hybrids, and good advice if you want some. You’re covered beyond the bike itself, too — all rentals come equipped with a helmet, bike lock, and bike trail map.

 

Wapatequa Woods Reservation to Tisbury Meadow Preserve (Tisbury)

An easy ride and beautiful scenery — what’s not to love? Head to Wapatequa Wood Reservation and Tisbury Meadow Preserve to pedal through woods, along dirt roads, and past a spacious meadow. The 4-mile out-and-back trail that connects the two Land Bank properties is conquerable by all skill levels, and even features all-natural snack spots — keep your eyes peeled for blueberry and huckleberry bushes along your ride.

 

Herring Creek Road (Vineyard Haven)

In it for the destination more than the distance? Combine a quick bike ride with a beach day by heading down Herring Creek Road in Vineyard Haven. The flat 0.6 mile ride begins by the Herring Creek Beach conservation area, which you’ll follow throughout the trip. Ride the trail a few times, and you’ll have earned a dip in nearby Lake Tashmoo Town Beach.

 

State Forest to Thimble Farm (West Tisbury)

Manuel F. Correllus State Forest boasts over 5,300 acres of forest, with 14 miles of wooded and paved paths to explore by bike or on foot. Escape the road traffic and embark on an 8-mile loop that begins in the state park and ventures over to the Greenlands. Stop for a break by Little Duarte’s Pond Preserve before continuing on to circle Thimble Farm.

 

Pennywise Preserve and Dr Fisher Road (Edgartown)

Pedal a path with some history at the Martha’s Vineyard Land Bank’s Pennywise Preserve. The trails here can take you way back to the mid-1800s as you pedal the ancient Tar Kiln Path and along the old Doctor Fisher Path, where grain was once carried from West Tisbury to Edgartown.

 

Three Ponds Reservation (Chappaquiddick Island)

Bring your bike on the Chappy Ferry and see what our little island nextdoor has to offer for Martha’s Vineyard bike trails. Combine cycling and sightseeing as you explore Chappaquiddick’s Three Ponds Reservation and pass Buttonbush, Brine, and Winterberry Ponds. On a particularly hot day, bring along your bathing suit and some water shoes to take advantage of a cooling plunge into Cape Poge Bay.

 

Poucha Pond Reservation (Chappaquiddick)

If you’re a nature lover, it doesn’t get much better than a bike ride around Poucha Pond Reservation. The trails weave between forested sections and open fields, with many an opportunity to pause for a stunning view (on a clear day, you may even see the Nantucket Islands). Keep an eye out for birds when cycling past the Poucha Pond marsh, it’s a prime sightseeing spot for egrets and herons.

 

Group Ride with the Vineyard Off Road Bicycling Association (VORBA)

If you’re nervous about adventuring on new trails alone, meet up with a group of dedicated cyclists on a Sunday morning.The Vineyard Off Road Bicycling Association (VORBA) gathers every Sunday at 9 a.m. and can act as your trail guide to even more remote areas of the island.

 

Once the helmets come off, most riders crave one of three things: a good meal, hot shower, or a solid lounging spot. Muster up enough energy to wheel yourself from the bike shop to Vineyard Square, and we’ll have all three waiting for you.