Main Area West is a James River hidden gem

View of James River Railway Bridge from Main Section WestDid you know that much of the shoreline covering the area between the Powhite Parkway Bridge and the Boulevard Bridge in South Richmond is part of the James River Park System?

Trailhead from Riverside Drive to Main Section WestIt is known within the Department of Parks, Recreation and Facilities as Main Area West and the main trailhead is in the 5300 block of Riverside Drive. A 10 minute hike down hill and across the train tracks will lead river-goers to some of the best granite boulders, vantage points and adventures you can find on the James.

Exposed pipe in the James River at Main Section WestWhen water levels are low, this area has some of the best adventure hiking in the area. You can walk on top of the concrete pipelines that run through the area to reach remote rocks and islands. You can get underneath the giant arches of the James River Railway Bridge (also known as the Atlantic Coast Line Railway Bridge or Belt Line Bridge) and watch kayakers run the Choo Choo Rapids.

There are also plenty of shady areas to find a good fishing hole, pitch a tent or stash a cooler.

Main Area West google mapFinding parking on Riverside Drive is almost impossible and nearby New Kent Avenue has limited parking. I suggest riding your bike to the park and locking it to the fencing at the trailhead. Use caution when crossing the railroad tracks and remember to truck out whatever trash is left from whatever you truck in and pick up stray trash, please!


6 responses to “Main Area West is a James River hidden gem

  1. Shhhhhh…. Can’t you keep a secret?

  2. yea. if these articles keep appearing, all the idiots will migrate from belle isle and trash this section.

  3. 1. The JRPS would love to see less concentration at sections like Pony Pasture and Belle Isle and park system needs to spread out a little to relieve stress. It is public land and we can’t keep it all to ourselves.
    2. However, idiots can’t/don’t read, so we’re safe. 🙂

  4. I really wish you hadn’t written this article. Plenty of people already know about these parts of the river, (judging by the amount of trash I pick up, too many).

  5. I appreciate your sentiment. I pick up trash there too, in fact I pick up trash everywhere in the river. The river is public land and doesn’t belong to individuals, it belongs to everyone.

  6. Pingback: Crescent shape & bamboo structure need explanation | James River News Hub

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