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York River Backbone Trail

EASY 53 reviews
#1 of 11 trails in

York River Backbone Trail is a 3.8 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Williamsburg, Virginia that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 3.8 miles Elevation Gain: 95 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly


horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips


bird watching





partially paved



wild flowers



From I-64, take the Croaker exit (231B), go north one mile on rt 607 (Croaker Road). Turn right and go one mile and a half on rt. 606 (Riverview Road).

First run in Virginia, was worth the $5 parking.. Trails have numerous washes, sand and Rockies trails. Watch your footing.. killer plank bridges made it worth while with tons of awesome views..

3 months ago

Just bear in mind that backbone trail is supposed to be the access to the various trails in the park. As such, it is basically a gravel road.

3 months ago

So many winding trail systems that are awesome, bikeable and easy. They are well marked, However they are not frequently marked. So be mindful when you make a turn that it’s correct. Marsh views are beautiful and eerie and many days you have privacy on the trail for 15-20 minutes at a time.

11 months ago

The picture shown is not the backbone trail; it is the end of the Majestic Oak Trail. All the trails in the park off the Backbone Trail are super nice with great views of the water at the end. The main backbone trail is a less interesting connector that gets you to all the good stuff.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

well maintained trail, splits off to many other trails, saw a turkey in the woods, fun day hike

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Yeah, nice run did the creek loop North, pretty good hills Then did the river section South and it was nice and flat Nice nature center and camp store.

Monday, January 02, 2017

A beautiful park with views along river, beaches and plenty of miles to hike for the day.

Saturday, November 05, 2016

I love this park and have been here many times.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Beautiful views and nice easy trails. Very well maintained park facilities too!

Thursday, March 17, 2016

If you love York River State Park, you have probably done this one.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

I've run these trails 3 times now. If you want it to yourself then go early in the morning. There's usually plenty of shells to find on the beach. It is kept up very well, however the last time I went there was a tree down covering one of the trails. If you go when it is humid outside then be sure to bring bug spray. The best part in my opinion is how secluded it is. Will be going back this summer to run.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

The Taskinas Trail was great, beautiful views throughout the trail. Looking forward to exploring more of the park.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

I had planed on spending the day Saturday but it rained all day. Why hike in the rain if you don't have to? So I went today and it was sunny and cool Perfect hiking weather!!! It was so beautiful. The trees had small leaves and the dogwood were in bloom.

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Really nice trail approx. 2 miles - I think its best to hike not bike we did both. Be mindful that its east to get turned onto another trail when on here as we ended up doing 3 times. They all intersect and loop around each other. The markers can be a bit misleading, so if you want it to be a 5 or even 4 mile just pick up the Dogwood or Majestic when they intersect and you'll increase your mileage plus take advantage of the different terrains.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Love this Place, they offer a variety of trails for any level. A group of us have begun hiking and biking- we range from beginning to advance… Having stated that each person feels satisfied hiking here. I will note sometime going in the morning is a little busier than in the afternoon so if your looking for solace go at a later time. The views are spectacular. Taskinas is my favorite, it gives me the difficulty I like and the serenity I look for.

Monday, March 30, 2015

This park offers the most variety of any trail set in the region - from woodlands to open meadows, wetland vistas, fossil beach and great elevation changes with switchbacks. I stop here whenever traveling through the peninsula.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Short trail but lots of good photo ops on this trail.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Great selection of trails that are well maintained. Quite a variety of single track and double track trails. Very pretty overlooks that make the run that much more enjoyable. Taskinas creek trail was good single track with some decent elevation change. Mattaponi, backbone, and the trail from the visitor center to fossil beach are all pretty much flat double track.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

My friend and I hiked several of the trails there at Yorktown. We favored the Fossil Beach best, if you travel down further than what's normally expected you see a lot of untouched and non trashed parts of the beach. Watch out for the little sand crabs as your walking! I would also suggest not to go barefoot, there are a lot of barnacles and sharp shells that would destroy your feet and possibly send you to the hospital. We tried a little fishing and didn't catch anything sadly. All in all it is a fantastic park with many different trail options to choose from. I would recommend this to anyone and everyone.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Outstanding Fall day to hike this trail, short and sweet!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Backbone Trail starts at or near the York River visitor center, depending on how you interpret the map. Its starts off being a paved trail but quickly turns into a gravel road after you pass the entrance to the park. The entire length is about 2.04 miles long and although the trail is pretty uneventful keep in mind that just about every other trail in the York River park intersects or originates from the Backbone Trail. I recommend hiking Backbone Trail to the very end and working your way back to the Visitor Center via all the other surrounding trails.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

We hike this park often. There is lot of variety. The rangers are nice here too.

Sunday, June 09, 2013

York River is one of my favorite parks, although all Virginia State Parks are wonderful. I have the pass (available at any Virginia State Park) and I get a lot of use out of it. Some of the parks seem to have more of a theme while others like York River and First Landing have a wide variety of scenery. Be sure and do the Tankanis Creek Trail and Fossil Beach while you are there but there are many other great trails, from easy to leg burners.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Nice trails.....The day I went saw a couple lizards which always makes the hike more enjoyable.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

From the beautiful York River to the spender of the forrest. This is a nice trail on a nice day.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Extremely clean park areas and the trails were clearly marked. Great for an easy run, as there are practically no inclines. One thing I learned quickly about this park is to bring the bug spray! The biting flies are incessant. Other than that, very enjoyable and relaxing.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

It was a beautiful day for a walk. For a short beginners trail, this trail has a lot to offer. From big river to quiet woods. You walk past a fishing lake and a little furthur down you come to a side trail to Fossil Beach.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

We've done Taskinas loop and the leg to fossil beach. Great trails for kids. There is a lot of wildlife/interesting things to look at. $3 on the weekends

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

mostly easy hikes, good views of the river and nature. some trails are extremely crowded most times but others will almost always provide some solitude. dogs are allowed on a leash, and don't forget the park entrance fee.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Majestic Oak Trail---- This trail is visited by bikers and horseback riders more than hikers because of it's distance from the main day use area of the park. The trail is an old logging road and shoots off from the Pamunkey Trail. Rows of Mountain Laurels are on either side as the trail gets closer to the river. Near the cliff is the Majestic Oak. This trea is said to be over 400 years old. Follow the trail past the horse barrier and walk on the footbridge on the marsh to enjoy a view of the York and watxh for wildlife. Cross the bridge and hike the North Fork of the Powhatan Forks Trail

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