Tag Archives: Smithfield

Leon willing, here’s where you can cross-country ski

Touring the bike & bridle trail at Umstead State Park in Raleigh.

It’s days like today that I pat myself on the back for a decision made 13 years ago.

I’d just finished a gorgeous day on the groomed trails at the White Grass ski touring center in West Virginia and was returning my rental equipment.
“How was it?” asked the ski rental guy.
“Incredible!” I oozed. “I can’t wait to go again.”
“You know,” he said, “Our rental skis are for sale.” At a price, it turned out, that was more than I could afford but too good to refuse. I’ve used them a dozen times since; I’m hoping to make it a baker’s dozen tomorrow.
As Winter Storm Leon (sheesh) makes its way up the coast, the prospects are good for cross-country conditions, from the Triangle into the coastal plain. As of this morning, parts of the Triangle were expected to get up to six inches of snow — with points east forecast to get 10 inches or more.
On the right kind of trail, six inches is all it takes to make or decent cross-country conditions. Where might one find the right kind of trail?
Glad you asked. read more

Two Piedmont greenways, two adventures

Downtown Winston-Salem looms at the end of the north end of the Strollway.

We’ve added two more greenways to our greenway guide, both of which offer a potential day of escape, especially for young families.

Smithfield: Buffalo Creek Greenway. When we stumbled across this work-in-progress in spring 2010, we were surprised by the audacity of such a project (a $1.2 million, 3.3-mile greenway) in a relatively small town (population 13,000ish). The greenway joins the  city’s historic center with new development on the north side of town. Starting at Bob Wallace Kiddie Park (and Riverside Cemetery, worth a visit in itself), the greenway skirts the Neuse River (passing the Neuse Little Theatre), then follows Buffalo Creek out to Smithfield Community Park, home of the new (2009) Smithfield Recreation & Aquatics Center, complete with indoor pool and splash park, indoor track, racquetball, basketball courts and more. Meanwhile, back downtown Smithfield’s wide streets and minimal traffic make exploring by bike enjoyable even for the newest of peddlers. Destinations include the Ava Gardner Museum and 75-year-old Howell Theatre and $3 movies. read more

Finding more greenways in North Carolina

Last week, we published a list of municipalities in North Carolina that we knew had greenways. Turns out there was a lot we didn’t know.

Since we published that list we’ve heard from an additional 14 municipalities with greenways, from Whiteville’s four greenways totaling a mile in length to Rocky Mount’s 7-mile system to Pinehurst’s 11-mile. Not only we’re we pleasantly surprised that so many municipalities in North Carolina have greenways, but that so many have plans to expand. And not just the Raleigh’s, the Cary’s and the Charlotte’s. Havelock, for instance, will soon add more than 4 miles to its 1-mile system, Albemarle is working on a 3-mile rails-to-trails greenway that will connect its Rock Creek Park and Montgomery Park to downtown, and Sanford, currently with 2 miles, intends to build a 20-mile greenway that will run out to and along the Deep River. read more