You’ve got options: Long option, short option, in-between option.
The first decision you need to make is whether to RIDE or DRIVE to Chippokes Plantation State Park - the remote start for 3 of today’s 4 routes – which is located across the James River. Either way you will be taking the Jamestown-Scotland Ferry which crosses every half-hour. The ferry is FREE!!! Once on the Surry side, proceed to Chippokes Plantation State Park (CPSP).
P.S. Snack Shack is open at CRP and CPSP from 7 - 11am today.
Riding to Surry
Ride Distance from Chickahominy to Chippokes: 13 miles (not counting the width of the James River which is 2.6 miles) – [Keep your Garmin on to log more miles! – just kidding, or am I?] So, if you ride there and back, that’s 26 miles (or 30.8). Write that down.
Navigation provided on Ride w/ GPS;
Helpful Tip: If you ride to Chippokes, you can pedal right past the Park Ranger Station at the entrance. If you drive your car there, you will need to stop. There is a $7 parking fee. However, you are in luck because we have taken care of that and all you need to do is show your 3 Day Bike About wrist band and you’re IN!! Follow the signs to the Swimming Pool parking lot. From there it is a short walk or ride to the Visitors Center. We will be nearby in Shelters 1 & 2.
Driving to Surry
From Chickahominy Riverfront Park, turn east (left turn out of park) onto Route 5 and drive approximately 4 miles to Greensprings Road. (Intersection where Spoke & Art Provisions Co. is located.) Turn right and proceed to Jamestown Road. Turn right at the stop sign and proceed to the Jamestown-Scotland Ferry dock.
Address for Chippokes Plantation State Park is 695 Chippokes Park Road, Surry, VA 23883, or just ask your navigation system for Chippokes Plantation State Park. (I personally think the quickest way to get to CPSP once you exit the ferry is to proceed straight on Rolfe Highway (Route 31) for 4.4 miles; turn left at the stoplight in beautiful downtown Surry onto Colonial Trail (VA-10 E) for 1.8 miles; turn left again on State Route 634 (Alliance Road) and drive 3.6 miles to the park entrance.
- Your navigation system may have you turn left soon after exiting the ferry. We would prefer you do not go this way as that is the route the cyclists are taking and the less motor vehicle traffic on those roads the better.
- Remember, you don’t have to pay the parking fee if you show your 3DBA wristband.
Once in Chippokes Plantation State Park, follow the signs to the Swimming Pool parking lot then walk or ride to the Visitors Center. We’re in Shelters 1 & 2.
Where to go from here:
Described below are three loop options from Chippokes Plantation State Park (CPSP) which has bathrooms, a Visitors Center, a beautiful view of the river, and hiking/walking trails.
Our main Gathering Place for today is Shelter 1 & 2, but we hope you will also stop by the places mentioned below in Surry and Smithfield.
Note: Depending on the weather conditions and your need for food and water, please understand there are very limited resources on these routes. What there is we have listed, so make sure you take what you will need before starting your ride.
Now for your riding options:
BLUE - 20 miles - 12 miles into the ride and you are in beautiful downtown Surry which is only slightly larger than a postage stamp (just kidding).
As you start out on this route you will be riding past the Farm Museum and Sawmill Exhibit (on your right) and make a right turn just before reaching the Jones-Stewart Mansion. If you don’t want to visit these sites now, you can always return after your ride…less than 1.5 miles from the Visitors Center. For the next mile you will continue to cycle through a portion of the plantation. Lots of rolling hills and fields before reaching downtown Surry.
Restrooms and Water: Public restrooms and a water fountain are located in the Sheriff’s Office on the backside of the Courthouse building on School Street - first right after turning onto Rolfe Highway.
- Anne’s Pizza & Italian is located at 128 Colonial Trail East (on the right after you turn off Rolfe Hwy and before you turn right on Bank Street). Opens at 11am.
- Just 4 Kicks Cupcakes & More - (the “more” means ice cream) is on your left before you make the short loop around downtown and head back to Chippokes Plantation State Park. Opens at 10 am.
- Meats of Virginia is located at 11381 Rolfe Hwy (turn left onto Rolfe Hwy after you pass the Government Center - it’s about ¼ mile up on your right). Opens at 10am.
From Surry you will retrace the inbound route for about a mile or so then turn onto Brownsview Lane. Use CAUTION when you turn right onto Colonial Trail at 15.5 miles and then left onto Alliance Road.
At 19 miles and you are turning back into Chippokes Plantation State Park.
PINK - 28.4 miles. This route takes you to Surry in the opposite direction of the BLUE route - out the front gate of CPST and on into the town of Surry at 7.7 miles. Use CAUTION when crossing Route 10 (Colonial Trail at MM 4.3 (it’s a right turn then a quick left). Leaving Surry you will wander about the countryside for a bit before returning to CPST. Use CAUTION when crossing Route 10 again at 24.3 miles.
Two short but (kinda) steep climbs on this otherwise rolling hills/flat route, 10 miles on Lebanon Road. and 27.2 miles on Alliance Road
GOLD - 42.9 miles. Definitely worth the mileage if you are looking for an excellent bakery or lunch or cruising around a quaint little town to see all the different architectural styles on display (Georgian, Romanesque, Federal). There are over 50 buildings in the Historic District. You can pick up a map at the Smithfield and Isle of Wight Visitor Center (319 Main St) to take a self-guided tour if you are so inclined. www.smithfieldva.gov
It’s a 23 mile ride to Smithfield with few amenities (i.e. food/water/restrooms) along the way so be prepared, especially with extra water if the weather warrants it.
After exiting the Park, you will be on Route 10 for about a mile. This is a busy road so stay alert.
*Bacon’s Castle Market - 4.8 miles into the route is at the intersection of Route 10 and White Marsh Road. You will come to this intersection on both your outbound and inbound routes.
A left turn at 22 miles puts you on Main Street and on your way into downtown Smithfield. Stay alert! This is a busy street with parking on both sides.
Restrooms & Water are located in the Visitor Center.
Smithfield Gourmet Cafe & Bakery - serves breakfast, brunch and lunch. Menu has such mainstays as the Main Street Monte Cristo, The Bakery Burger, the Piggly Wiggly and the Windsor Castle. It is not only a favorite among local cyclists, but often the destination on a Surry County ride. www.smithfieldgourmetbakery.com
Smithfield Ice Cream - old-fashioned counter & booth setup serving traditional ice cream & deli-style sandwiches. www.smithfield-ice-cream-business.site
Yummaries Bakery - only open on Saturdays so visit while you have the chance. www.yummaries.com
Taste of Smithfield -serves fresh authentic, signature dishes unique to Smithfield. www.tasteofsmithfield.com
Wharf Hill Brewing Company - relaxed brewpub serving food, craft beers, wine & spirits in historical digs. www.wharfhillbrewing.com
The Restaurant at Smithfield Station - an award-winning restaurant with an extensive menu of fresh seafood, Smithfield ham and an ever popular Sunday Breakfast buffet. Dine on the deck overlooking the marina. www.smithfieldstation.com
After a short cruise around Smithfield you are headed back to Chippokes. At 38.5 miles you will pass by Bacon’s Castle - the oldest brick dwelling (1667) and site of Bacon’s Rebellion in 1676. The house is an example of High Jacobean architecture. The home also features a reconstructed 17th century English formal garden. www.preservationvirginia.org
Chippokes Plantation State Park:
- One of the oldest continuously operated plantations in the nation. Established in 1619 by English Captain William Powell, the plantation changed hands many times but was eventually owned by Mr. & Mrs. Victor Steward who willed it to the Commonwealth of Virginia in 1967 for the establishment of a museum of Virginia's agricultural history They are buried on the property. www.dcr.virginia.gov.
- The farm museum, along with the plantation house and various farm buildings, may be open for tours. Check with personnel in the Visitors Center.
- Smith’s Ford is the site of Captain John Smith’s proposed “New Fort” and is located directly across the James River from Jamestown. The site still has earthworks that mark the spot of the unfinished fort site partially completed in 1609 before being abandoned. The current house is situated on land given by Chief Wahunsenacawh (Powhatan) as a dowry for his daughter Pocahontas’ marriage to John Rolfe in 1614. The manor house on the property was built for Jacob Faulcon circa 1761 and retains much of its original pine woodwork.
- In 1886 Smith’s Fort was purchased by a collective group of Black families including Bolling Morris, John and Carter Hardy and Roberton Simmons.
- Smith’s Fort was acquired by Preservation Virginia in 1933 after it was resorted by John D. Rockefeller, Jr.
- Location: 217 Smith Ford Lane. Just off Route 31 about halfway between the Jamestown-Scotland ferry dock and downtown Surry.
- St. Luke’s Historic Church and Museum – 14477 Benns Church Blvd, Smithfield. The church was built in the 17th century and is a National Historic Landmark. www.stlukesmuseum.org (St. Luke’s is not on the tour routes but worth a visit if you decide to drive to Smithfield.
- Bacon’s Castle - oldest surviving brick dwelling in North America. Built 1665. Site of Bacon’s Rebellion. www.preservationvirginia.org