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AMERICAN TOBACCO TRAIL

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THE NEWS & OBSERVER
THURSDAY, AUGUST 2, 2007                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Life, etc.                                                                                                                                    5E
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Susie Post Rust




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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           St
                                                                                                                                                                                                   F          P W R                                                                                                                                                            pauses as she




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                                      The American Tobacco Campus/downtown Durham:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             rides with




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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Ma
                                      Plan to end your trip at the northern trailhead,                                                                                                                                                               Durham Bulls                                                                                                              daughter Rosie,
                                      then head across Morehead Avenue and under                                                                                                                                                                     Athletic Park                   Ma                                                                                        in carrier, and
                KEY                   the Durham Freeway to the American Tobacco                                                                                                                                                                                                             in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               son John on the
                                      Campus for pizza, sushi, a brewski or coffee in                                                                                                                   22 miles                                                                                  St
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    .




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Du
         P Parking                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Durham portion




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                                      the courtyard.




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             am
         W Water                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               of the American




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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                y.                                                                             Tobacco Trail




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       xb
         R Restrooms                                           BYP
                                                                                          Cor                                                                                      Forest




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                                                                                              nwa
                                                                                                  llis                                                                             Hills Park                                                                                                                                                                                  near the Durham
                                                                15                                                         Rd
         H Horse trailer                                       501                                                            .                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Bulls Athletic
           access                                                                                                  751                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Park.
                                                                                            BUS
         F Food                                                                              15
                                                                                            501
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Creek
                Busy intersection
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                1 MILE                                Primeval forest:                                                                                                                                                                                      Ro
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                                                      A mile-long stretch of forest shrouded
                                                      in kudzu shuts out the neighborhoods                                                                                                                                                                        Rock
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Creek
                  15                                  and businesses that lie just beyond.                                                                                                                          20.1 miles                                    spur
                 501                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Rd.




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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   AMERICAN
           Open late:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Riddle
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Road
           The American Tobacco Trail is open dawn to dusk,                                                                                                                                                     19.1 miles                                             spur
           except for a 6.6-mile section from N.C. 54 north to
           downtown Durham. To accommodate a growing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Mar
           number of commuters, this section of the trail is                                                                                                                                                                   tin



                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Co
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   TOBACCO
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    rn
           open 5 a.m. to 10 p.m.                                                                                                                                                                                                               h          er



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                                                                                                                                          DURHAM

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     .
                                                                                                                                                                       17.8 miles                                              Solite                                         .
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Pkw
                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Park 18.25 miles                                         y.
                                                                             Rd.




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                                                                                                                                                                                                              St
                                                                                                Creek




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     TRAIL
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                                                                                                                                                   16.6 miles                                           lle
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                                                                                                                                                                                   F
                                                                                                         Woodcroft
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                                                                                      Fork                                                             .
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                               Jordan Lake
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  W
                               game lands
                                                                                       F             P W R                                                                                               Southpoint Crossing shopping center:                                                                                   hen completed, the American Tobacco Trail will be the longest trail
                                                                                                                                                                                                         A good place to start and end your                                                                                     in the Triangle, stretching 22 miles from western Wake County north
                                                                                                                                                                                                         trip, with water, restrooms and various                                                                                to downtown Durham. At present, about 20 miles of trail are open:
                                                                          15.4 miles                                                                                                                     types of food.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  6.7. miles in Wake County, 4.7 miles in Chatham County and 9 in Durham County.
                                                                      Missing                                                                                                                                                        40
                                                                      bridge                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The main hurdles to completion: two bridges using old railroad trestles in Chatham
                                                                                                              Streets at
                                                                                                              Southpoint                                                                                                                                                                                          County and a pedestrian bridge over Interstate 40 in Durham near the Streets at
                                                                                                              mall                                                                                                            54
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Southpoint mall. Because of these breaks, the trail is divided into four sections.
                                                                                                                                   Rd.
                                         Creek




                                                                                                                                      .
                                                                                                                                   Rd                                              Gr                                                                                                                                The ATT is the backbone of a Triangle-wide effort to link as many cities and neigh-
                                                                                                                                                                                     an
                                                                                   Massey Chapel                                                                                            da                                                                     55                                             borhoods by greenway and bike path as possible. In one such scenario — a sce-
                                                                                                                          eville




                                                                                                                                                                                                   le
                                                                                                     P                                                                                                                                                                                                            nario that is about three-quarters complete — using ATT and other greenways,
                                                                                                                    Fayett
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            t




                                         Hop
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  it will be possible to ride a bike, run or walk from Raleigh, through Umstead State
                                                                                                                                          13 miles                           Water warning:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Park, Cary and Apex, then catch the ATT to downtown Durham.
                                                    w
                                                                                                                                                                             There is no water
                                                  Ne                                                                                                                         south of here.                                                                                                                          We made the Wake County end of the trail our starting point at the bottom of
                            Cr
                              ee




                                                                                       P W R                                                                                 Plan accordingly.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the map at left so the mileage marks are from south to north.
                                k




                                                                                     C.M. Herndon Park                                                    Scott King Rd.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   STAFF PHOTOS BY JULI LEONARD
                                                                                                      Creek




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     RTP
                                                                                                                                                        11.8 miles
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       DURHAM CO.
                                                        DURHAM CO.                                                                                                                                                                       WAKE CO.
                                                                                      d




                                                        CHATHAM CO.
                                                                                      oke




                                                                                                                       10.8 miles                                                                                         Bridge-to-Bridge stretch:
                                                                                   Cro




   Don’t ford the creek:                                                                                                                                                                           Kit
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The most natural part of the
   People have been known to                                                                                                                       Missing                                                                trail. Unimproved surface keeps
                                                                                                                                                                                                           Cree




   cross Northeast Creek —                                                                                                                         bridge                                                                 the aerobic types away, making
                                                                                                                                                                                                              k




   including a trio of mountain                                                                                                                                                                                           for a more peaceful, solitary
                                                                                                               k
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   bikers. But we don’t know                                                                                                         O’                                                                                   saunter. Eventually, most of this
                                                                                                           Cr




                                                                                                                                          Ke
                                                                                                                                             lly                                                                          4.7-mile stretch through
   how they did it and we                                                                                                                            Ch
   wouldn’t recommend it.                                                                                                                               ap                                                                Chatham County will consist of
                                                                                                       Northeast




                                                                                                                                                            el
                                                                                                                                                                                  Rd                                      a 10-foot-wide paved greenway
                                                                                                                                                                                     .
                                                                                                                        9.75 miles                                                                                        and a parallel 6-foot-wide
                                                              751                                                                                                                                                         screened, crushed gravel
   Ford the creek:                                                                                                                                                                    P                                   surface, making the 11.3-mile
   Though this bridge currently                                                                                                                                                                                           Wake and Chatham sections
   consists only of supports                                                                                                                                                                                              equestrian friendly. $2.2 million
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          has been awarded in grants for
                                                                                                                             Pan




   (and no decking), at low                                                                                                                                                                       ch
                                                                                                                                                                                                an                        this section of trail, including
                                                                                                                                                                                              Br
                                                                                                                                the




   water it is possible to cross                                                                                                                                              cy
                                                                                                                                                                           an                                             two pedestrian bridges to be
                                                                                                                                   r




   Panther Creek on foot. Watch                                                                                                                                        N
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                          built using the existing trestles.
                                                                                                                                            ee




                                                                                                                                                                                            Branch
   your footing, though; it’s a                                                                                                                                                    ris
                                                                                                                                                  k




   steep drop down to the creek                                                                                                                                                  or                                       The finished trail with bridges
                                                                                                                                                                             M
   — and an equally steep climb                                                                                           Ch                       Missing                                                                could open by the end of 2008.
                                                                                                     pe




                                                                                                                            urc                    bridge                                                                                                                                            Rd.            On the Wake County end, the ATT runs across Beaver Creek in New Hill.
   up the other side.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Station
                                                                                                  Ho




                                                                                                                               h                                                                                                     Carpenter                      Fire
                                                                                     New                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Other bridges need to be built to make the 22-mile trail complete.
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                                                                                                                                                    Tobacco Tra




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               rd                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          In the
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            Jo                                                                                                                                                                                                                       CARY                                                                                                                                  Jordan Lake
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                                                                                                                                                                                                            .                                                                                                                                                              Game Lands
                           TRAIL SURFACES                                                                                                                                                                                     Future trails:                                                                                                                               you might
        Screened, crushed gravel                                                                                                                                           6.7 miles                                          Eventual connections with                                                                                                                    spot a box
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Cary’s White Oak Creek
                                                                                                                                                           an




        Currently, an irregular surface consisting                                                                                                                                                                            greenway. This greenway will                                                                                                                 turtle. The
                                                                                                                                                        ric




        of dirt and some crushed gravel.                                                                                                                                                                                      connect with the greenway at                                                                                                                 Chatham
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        Eventually, this section will consist of a                                                                                                                                                                            Bond Park in Cary and run                                                                                                                    County
                                                                                                                                                                      Am




        10-foot-wide paved greenway and an                                                                                                   Rd.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              through Umstead State Park                                                                                                                   section is
        adjoining 6-foot-wide path of screened,                                                                             Shop
                                                                                                      er                                                                                                                      and into Raleigh, near N.C.                                                                                                                  the wildest
                                                                                                    wt
        crushed gravel.                                                                           Le                                                                                                                          State. More than half of this                                                                                                                part of the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              trail is complete.
        Currently, irregular surface consisting of                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         trail.
                                                                                                                                                                     Wh




        dirt and some crushed gravel. Eventually,
                                                                                                                                                                       ite




        this section will be a 12-foot-wide paved
                                                                                                                                                                         Oa




        greenway.                                                                                                                                                                                        P          R H
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Green




                                                                                                                                            5.3 miles
        Unfinished trail (this is roughly the route).
                                                                                                                                                                                      Chur
                                                                                               nch




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Level
                                                                                            Bra




        12-foot-wide paved greenway with
                                                                                                                                                                                          ch Rd.




        screened, crushed gravel shoulders.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Churc
                                                                                   Ford




                                                                                                                                   Gre
                                                                                                                                       en               Rd.
                                                                                                                                                  Level
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                                                                             Rocky




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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Cla
                                                                                                              WAKE CO.




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     If you are
                Mill




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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      out for a
                                                                                                                   CO.



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                                                                                                                  HAM




                                                                                                                                                                                 rly




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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   nature walk,
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                                                                                                             CHAT




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                                                                                                                                               3.65 miles
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              h




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   try the part
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    of the trail
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Rd.




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     marked in
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Rd.
                                                                                                White
                                                                                                                           Oak              Creek
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             nks                                                                    blue in the
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Je                                                               APEX    map. But be
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  sure to carry
                                                                                                                                   2.3 miles                                                                                                                                                                          your own
                                    Hardhat area:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        water.
                                    Watch for golf balls                                                                           64
                                    from the adjoining
                                    driving range.
                                                                                                                                                                                                             c  h
                                                                                                                                                                                                          an




                                                                                                                                    1.2 miles
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Br




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Mile marker:
                                                                                                  New




                                                                                                                                                                                e     dy
                                                                                                             Olive Cha                                                       Re                                                      A five-foot concrete obelisk
  Beavers at work:                                                                                                     pel
                                                                                                                                               Rd.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     bearing a “16” is a remnant
                                                                                              Hi




  A stretch of dead trees
                                                                                                ll -




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     of mile markers once found
  along the trail in wetlands                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Robert Frye
                                                                                          Oliv




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     along the old railroad.
  is the work of industrious                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            of Apex
                                                                                              e




  beavers who dammed a
                                                                                      Chap




                                                                                                                        r                                            Cre                                                                                                                                                                                                                walks his
                                                                                                                     ave                                                ek
  stretch of Beaver Creek                                                                                          Be                                                                                                                               DURHAM Area                                                                                                                         dogs, Willy,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         shown
                                                                                           el




  about five years ago.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        left, and
                                                                                                Rd




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Jake, on the
                                                                                                   .




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        ATT at New
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  WAKE
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hill. Frye
           Future trail:                                                                                                                                                                                              CHATHAM
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        walks the
           A 20-mile multiuse trail is                                                                                                     P         R           H
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        trail two or
           in early discussions. It                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     three times
           would extend to Harris                                                      0 miles
           Lake County Park and on to                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   a week.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         1
           Raven Rock State Park on                                                                                                                                                                                                 k                                               U.S.
           the Cape Fear River. Its                                                                                                                                                                                             Cr
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ee                                     Old
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Beaver
           working name: ATT South.                                                                                                                                                le
                                                                                                                                                                           Litt


                                                                                                                                                                                                                     STAFF ILLUSTRATION BY TOM MOSIER




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     5E-N, THURSDAY, AUGUST 2, 2007                                                                                      C M Y K
                                    10           20      30         40         50               60                  70                    80            90

				
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