Seven Bridges Road
Old Chatham, NY (Columbia County)
Chatham, NY is a special place for those who love dirt roads. Over half of Chatham's 97 miles of town roads are dirt and they are crisscrossed during annual large cycling events like The Farmer's Daughter. Chatham actually has a group of local boosters for its dirt roads– the Chatham Dirt Road Coalition. This organization advocates for preserving dirt road surfaces whenever possible. They tout their historical value, their appeal to tourists, and the safer experience for cyclists and pedestrians due to lower vehicle speeds.
Seven Bridges Road is outside of the Old Chatham center and is just under 1.5 miles long. Compared to the surrounding landscape, Seven Bridges has a gentler grade, climbing gradually when traversed from west to east. It does in fact cross many wooden bridges, although I've always failed to count them accurately despite resolving to do this on several occasions. This is probably because on the rides I've done here, this picturesque road is an ideal place to chat with fellow cyclists or just enjoy a relaxing stretch of well-forested road that doesn't require the focus or attention demanded by the steep climbs or looser gravel of nearby roads.
1.4 mi +209 ft / -7 ft
Look for: Seven(?) bridges
Possible loop: 2022 Gravel Goblin Course
Nearby dirt: Check out this dirt road map put together by the Chatham Dirt Road Coalition.
Surface: Packed dirt
Bike: Gravel bike or even a road bike with robust tires