Durham Community Trail Watch

Durham Community Trail Watch Members at Event and A Man Biking on a Trail

What is the Durham Community Trail Watch Group?

The Durham Community Trail Watch (DCTW) group is a network of volunteers that monitor the hike and bike trails in Durham at their leisure. The group was originally formed to ensure that the American Tobacco Trail be a safe and enjoyable place for all trail users to experience the outdoors, whether they’re using the trail for recreational or commuting purposes. The group has since expanded its patrol territory to include all hike and bike trails in Durham County. DCTW continues to promote safe, clean and enjoyable trails through their trail clean-up days with the Durham Parks and Recreation’s Adopt-a-Trail program, the group’s informational Education Stations, and hosting their monthly Full Moon Fever Bike Rides.

How can I sign up?

Fill out a volunteer application form and the DCTW coordinator will follow up.

Full Moon Fever Bike Rides

Experience the American Tobacco Trail at night at our monthly Full Moon Fever Bike Ride with the Durham Community Trail Watch group! Rides are scheduled the first Saturday of every month.

Please note: the ride has two starting times and locations.

  • 7:30 p.m. - First Ride Start Time
    The first ride start is at 7:30 p.m. in front of Mellow Mushroom (410 Blackwell Street) in downtown Durham. That group will ride down the American Tobacco Trail and meet up with the second group that meets at 8:30 p.m. in front of Bean Traders (105 W North Carolina 54). This ride is approximately 32 miles.
  • 8:30 p.m. - Second Ride Start Time
    The second group will meet at 8:30 p.m. in front of Bean Traders (105 W North Carolina 54) on Hwy 54 at Fayetteville Street, and ride to the New Hope Church Road Trailhead, and then turn around. This ride is approximately 16 miles.

Both groups will ride together on the American Tobacco Trail to the end of the pavement at New Hope Church Road, and then turn around and head back towards Durham.

Riders are free to turnaround at any point and head back towards Durham or keep going past the end of the pavement to the end of the natural surface trail.

Riding pace is up to each individual rider, but is typically very casual. No riders will be dropped within the main group. The main group will not be responsible for supporting riders separating themselves from the group.

Helmets and lights are required.

Total mileage:
7:30 p.m. group = 32 miles
8:30 p.m. group = 16 miles

There is no cost to participate in this ride, and no sign up required.

COVID-19 Safety Precautions
• Riders will need to complete a participation waiver prior to beginning the ride.

Ride Cancellation Policy - Full Moon Fever Ride

Full Moon Fever Rides may be canceled if there is the possibility inclement weather.  Please check Parks and Recreation’s social media sites before you leave for the ride.  Ride cancellations will be posted up to one hour before ride time.  Rides may also be canceled at ride time or at any time during the ride if the weather turns. This is at the discretion of the ride support volunteer in conjunction with DPR staff. We won’t ride if the trail is significantly wet at the start time. You can use the criteria below to assess the chance that the ride will be canceled.

Ride Cancellation Criteria:

Rides will be canceled if any of the following poor weather conditions are predicted for the ride by Accuweather.com hourly and/or the WRAL weather app.

  1. Rain, sleet, or snow that will make the trail wet;
  2. Cold Weather Conditions: "Real Feel" temperatures of less than 40 degrees;
  3. Thunderstorm, tornado, hurricane, or winter storm warnings;
  4. High Wind Conditions: Consistent wind speeds of over 30 mph or gusts of over 50 mph

What if Riders Show up for a Canceled Ride?

If you go to a ride that has been canceled, you are free to ride with any others who show up.  However, the ride will not be an official DPR sponsored ride, and there may not be support volunteers.  North Carolina weather can be very unpredictable. No rider wants to be caught out in a storm!

What is the AccuWeather RealFeel Temperature?

The “RealFeel” Temperature is an equation that takes into account many different factors to determine how the temperature actually feels outside. It takes into account multiple factors to determine how hot and cold feels. Some of the components that are used in the equation are humidity, cloud cover, winds, sun intensity and angle of the sun. Humidity is contributor to determining the “RealFeel”, but the time of the day also is important, due to the angle of the sun. Wind is a component that determines how people perceive the weather. The wind can make a person feel colder because the cold wind blowing removes heat from your body.

Durham Community Trail Watch Resources