Clinton Nature Preserve
I've visited Clinton Nature Preserve five different times now and the route I'm sharing here is my favorite. This trail system can be configured several different ways, so take this route as suggestion and maybe head back a few times and dial it in to satisfy your preferences. I'm only documenting 8.5 miles, but there's a good bit more milage to add in if you're up for it.
The main reason for documenting the route is for exposure. I ran a poll on Instagram and over 75% of participants haven't visited Clinton. Maybe that's because the majority of the followers are into gravel riding vs mountain biking. Either way, this place is pretty close to Atlanta and mountain biking's rad. Also, underbiking's fun sometimes, so whatever rig you take, chances are... you'll still have an enjoyable time. To get start on this route head to Clinton Nature Preserve.
There's three special things about Clinton and why I think it needs to be in everyone's quiver.
- When it rains, it doesn't close.
- The terrain is truely unique.
- Rogue trails.
"Clinton's never closed", this is a quote you'll see floating around the interwebs and social media. Trails within a 30-40 minute car ride of Atlanta are typically closed after rain to help with trail sustainablilty. Leaving the next sunny day ruined... unless you go to Clinton. Which is exactly what happened and spurred the want to share my thoughts on Clinton. It'll be no surprise once you get out there to see why rain doesn't effect Clinton like the other trails. The soil is rocky and the granite slabs are great for drainage.
While out there you'll encounter granite slabs coated in lush moss with clear paths that are traveled on. You'll gaze at uinque trees that look transplanted from the Pacific North West. Not everything's unique though, there's plenty of pine and oak forest to carve through... but even those get funky at times.
The last thing to touch on are the hidden gems out there. I ran up on these trails my first time... so when I say hidden, I don't mean you need the secrete details to ride the rouge trails. In fact they aren't hidden at all. They are just there, homegrown signs and all. It doesn't seem like anyone's actively working on removing them, in fact I ran up on a retired fella doing some maintenance and had a quick chat. When I said "Thanks for your time", he simply returned with a "I'm just glad to see someone enjoying them."
That's it, scout out the route I've provided below and go give Clinton Nature Preserve a shot. I'd be surprised if you dont like it. Although if you're looking for jump trails and mega flow, there's better options at Blankets Creek.