Mountain biker Jeff Lane rides on the Fox Connector trail on Redstone Arsenal
1 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Mountain biker Jeff Lane rides on the Fox Connector trail on Redstone Arsenal (Photo Credit: Erin Elise ) VIEW ORIGINAL
Erin McMahon rides the Claymore Trail on Redstone Arsenal.
2 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Erin McMahon rides the Claymore Trail on Redstone Arsenal. (Photo Credit: Erin Elise) VIEW ORIGINAL

Redstone Arsenal boasts some of the best bike trails in the region, and they aren’t just for people who live or work on post.

Anyone who completes the paperwork and passes a background test is eligible to receive a recreational badge that allows access to the Arsenal and use of its bike trails and other outdoor recreational facilities.

Brian Reinwald, chief of physical security at Redstone, said the process is quick, easy and free.

One, stop by the Visitors Center at Gate 9 on Rideout Road.

Two, receive a document listing rules and regulations that must be followed on post, including requirements for helmets and reflective vests.

Three, complete an application for a recreational badge, which also gives permission for a background check.

The background check looks at the applicant’s criminal history and driving record, Reinwald said. Anyone who has been convicted of a felony or who has a questionable record, such as repeat DUI offenses, will likely be denied access to the Arsenal.

The entire process can be done while you wait, depending on how busy the Visitors Center is at any given time, Reinwald said.

“It generally takes about five to six minutes,” he said. “They can go there, we can do everything. If they pass the background check, they can have access that day.”

The recreational badge is a card similar in size and appearance to a Civilian Access Card, and includes the user’s photograph.

Access can be made to the Arsenal with the recreational badge at Gate 9 on Rideout Road or at Gate 8 on Goss Road.

Tom Pyburn, director of sports, fitness and aquatics at the Arsenal, said recreational card holders can access the many bicycle trails on post and the seven-mile greenway trail.

Bike riders can also ride on the roads themselves, with less traffic and more safety offered on the weekends.

Maps of the Arsenal’s bike trails, which indicate their levels of difficulty, can be found at Redstone.armymwr.com.

Erin McMahon, vice president of the Huntsville Area Mountain Bike Riders (HAMR) and a Lower Tier Interceptor configuration management analyst at the SHIELD (Short and Intermediate Effectors for Layer Defense) Project Office, said the bike trails offer something for everyone.

“There are some easier trails for newer riders, plus a few technical downhill trails, and a lot in between,” she said. “The convenience from my workplace can’t be better, either.”

Recreational badge holders can also use Redstone’s Disc Golf Course and its two boat launches on the Tennessee River, Pyburn noted.

Stephanie Stone, marketing manager for Morale, Welfare and Recreation, said recreational badge holders can also use such facilities as Redstone Lanes bowling center, Links golf course, and Flying Activity with access to flying lessons.

The recreation badge also allows card holders access to some restaurants on post, including the Java Cafe, Greek Gyros Express, and The Summit at Redstone and gives them easy access to special events on post.