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Germania Dirt Trail

This little series of singletrack loops lies alongside the Jordan River in Murray. The main loop is about 0.8 miles long, at an altitude of 4250 feet, with virtually no climbing. Enclosed within this main loop, two small adjoining loops add another 0.6 miles of riding.

The trail, marked with carsonite posts (and temporary flags), is a narrow ribbon of dirt winding through a wild area in the Jordan River bottoms. Review November 19, 2009 by Bruce.

OK, so why is this tiny trail listed on a mountain biking site? The Germania Dirt Trail, as far as I know, is the only official bicycle singletrack on the Salt Lake Valley floor. It connects to the Jordan River Parkway trail, which sees a lot of bicycle traffic. So it offers some unique opportunities. The trails are stuffed into a small wild area between the paved Jordan River Parkway trail and the cindered "horse route" along the river bank. The trail has lots of twists and turns, and is fun for riders of all abilities.

Dan Cornelius rides the loop after a bicycle commute from his home via the Jordan River Parkway trail.

The Germania trails make a great family ride for kids who are ready to try some real dirt. There's a picnic pavilion right at the parking area, about 150 feet from the trail. There's grass for family games. And the Jordan River Parkway is right there, if somebody wants to crank out some miles.

The trail slips through groves of elm, russian olive, and cottonwood trees, among meadows mixed with clumps of phragmites. The white stuff along the trail is snow.

Beginners will find this a non-threatening bit of dirt to practice on. There's one little "mountain" with elevation change of about 20 feet. There are plenty of twists and turns to practice steering, and some speed change-ups can let you practice shifting gears.

Peeking at the Jordan River through the tamarisk as the trail temporarily hits the cindered horse path.

When winter comes, this trail offers dirt when everything else is buried under snow. The trail's curves make it a good practice loop for roadies who are graduating to cyclocross racing. 

It's easy to get to. Go to the Germania park in Murray, or ride your bike directly to the trail on the Jordan River Parkway.

The trail connects to the Jordan River Parkway trail.

This trail is the work of Dan Cornelius (photos above), who got the trail approved through Murray City and built it in fall 2009. The plan is to add additional bits -- perhaps an inner trail within the current dirt loop -- in spring 2010.
Getting there:  From I-15, take the 53rd South exit and turn west. After 1/2 mile, 5300 South has turned into 5400 South. Turn right at 1070 West (the traffic light just before crossing the Jordan River). Drive past the first parking area, and continue 1/4 mile to the Germania Pavilion. Catch the westbound paved trail past the soccer field (heading toward the river). Fork right when the trail splits, then spot the singletrack on your left about 40 feet after the trail fork. It's marked with a carsonite post. The dirt loop splits about 20 feet from the pavement. Ride either direction.

Facilities: Bathrooms at Germania pavilion. Apparently they're locked during the cold months (bathrooms closed November 2009).

Riding resources for this trail:
Single-page riding guide
Map for printing:  PDF satellite view Germania
GPS track files and route (right-click and "Save as..."):
   Garmin     GPX  (files include portion of parkway)
Lodging, camping, shops:
    Links to northern SLC resources
    Links to southern SLC resources

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