Cedar Creek Trail, Columbia

Directions: From Columbia, 63 South to Hwy Y at the Ashland Exit.  Take Hwy Y 7 miles East to the Pine Ridge Recreation Area.

Trail Information: The Cedar Creek trails has over 30 miles of trail that include technical, steep climbs and descents with creek-crossings, runs through meadows, connectors on country roads and trailheads at several campgrounds.  I start at the Pine Ridge Recreation Area, and immediately encounter steep declines and ascents which occur throughout the 3 miles to the Dry Fork campground.  The singletrack is pretty rocky, and at least once encounters the creek.  I've been able to rockhop across the Dry Fork creek all but one time, and that required taking on quite a soaker.  Trail maintenance seems sporadic.
All but the longest runs will be an out and back, as the entire trail is a 35-mile loop.  There is a 1/4 mile trek through a meadow near the Pine Ridge trailhead, and in the summer, it's tick heaven.  Insect repellant worked for me, though. There are water pumps at the Pine Ridge and Dry Fork trailheads, along with port-a-potties.  The closest place for drinks/snacks is Ashland 7 miles away, which is also where they'll cart you in case of injury.     

Miscellaneous Information: Watch for Nevins Homestead about a mile or so from the Pine Ridge campground.  It's an abandoned set of buildings from the mid-1800s, and is a neat piece of history.

Matt