While Central Virginia can’t lay claim to the rocky, mountain trails with long climbs and alpine vistas in the western part of the state, there is quite a variety of places to hike and trail run here — from city and county parks, to Pocahontas State Park to the Virginia Capital Trail and more. There’s a reason Trail Runner Magazine named Richmond one of America’s best trail-running towns in 2009.
The urban wilderness trails of the James River System consistently surprise out-of-town hikers and runners with its rugged singletrack and short, steep climbs. Especially in winter, when the trees are bare, you don’t have to walk far to find a view of the river, downtown or both.
In Chesterfield’s 8,000-acre Pocahontas State Park you can take a wooded hike along Swift Creek Lake without seeing another person or put in 30 miles of running without retracing your steps.
All throughout Central Virginia, parks like Deep Run, Powhite, Larus, Point of Rocks and dozens of others make it easy for everyone from neighborhood dog walkers to hikers and runners to pursue their passion while getting their feet a little dirty.