MTBing Texas State Parks...- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1

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    MTBing Texas State Parks...

    With fuel prices being what they are now, I thought I'd start trying to find trails closer to home. (I live in Denison on the Texas-Oklahome border) Anyway, The wife and I have a camper and are looking for Texas St parks with some good trails. We go to Big Bend in the winter (a looooong drive) ...but what are some other parks we're missing out on?

    I've been looking at the Texas Parks web site but would like to hear from ya'll...the ones that actually ride the trails.

    Thanks,
    Mikey

    EDIT: Photos would be greatly appreciated...
    Last edited by MikeyLikesIt; 07-26-2008 at 10:37 AM.

  2. #2
    govt kontrakt projkt mgr
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    Tyler state park is long, buff, flowy, and a series of switch backs. It is a most outstanding trail. Johnson Branch near DFW is also good as is Huntsville near H'town. Huntsville is rather easy though.

    Oh San Angelo is also worthwhile.

    I haven't figured getting firefox to let me put the cursor where i want to, the above about a switchbacks meant to say it incorporates a section of neat uphill switchbacks.

    Yes, many Texas state Parks very good.

  3. #3

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    Thanks, I don't live far from Johnson Branch, but every time I've planned to ride there it rains the day before and they close the trail. Maybe I'll ride it in the morning...we need the rain.

    I live about 5 miles from Eisenhower St park on Lake Texoma and it has a really nice trail...a little short, but fun and rocky with some difficult sections...it makes for a good workout in the evening after work. As soon as I figure a way to carry my camera I'll get some photo's.

    I may have to try Tyler...I lived in Palastine many years ago. Beautiful area.

    Mikey

  4. #4
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    Johnson Branch is nice and so is Isle DuBois (both on Ray Robert's lake). Bonham SP has a fairly good trail. Tyler is best known and most ridden. Also about 25 miles into OK is Lake Murray, which if you start from the South side, is a GREAT ride.

  5. #5

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    Thanks Dangeruss, I was just talking to a fellow MTBer yesterday about Bonham SP. He says the trail is easy but lots of fun. Also, Lake Murray is on my 'to do' list.

    Johnson Branch and Isle du Bois look like good trails...I think maybe next weekend I may go camping at Lake Ray Roberts and do some biking at both areas. I'm riding at Cross Timbers, on Lake Texoma, in the morning with one of my sons...not a state park but is the best trail in this area, IMO. Maybe Bonham in a couple of weeks.

    BTW, I'm not just interested in parks in North Texas but good trails anywhere in Texas. We like to camp when on vacation and we're looking for alternatives to Co. and NM. I've been looking at the TPWD listing...
    http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/a...ke/index.phtml

    Anyone ride any of these ????

    I've now got my camera 'attached' to my pack so I'll start posting some pics of the trails in this area. I may have to start a new thread... 'photos of state park trails'.

  6. #6
    govt kontrakt projkt mgr
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    i've riddeen palo duro, tyler, huntsville, and san angeloangelo and tyler off of your list. they are all fun.
    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyLikesIt
    Thanks Dangeruss, I was just talking to a fellow MTBer yesterday about Bonham SP. He says the trail is easy but lots of fun. Also, Lake Murray is on my 'to do' list.

    Johnson Branch and Isle du Bois look like good trails...I think maybe next weekend I may go camping at Lake Ray Roberts and do some biking at both areas. I'm riding at Cross Timbers, on Lake Texoma, in the morning with one of my sons...not a state park but is the best trail in this area, IMO. Maybe Bonham in a couple of weeks.

    BTW, I'm not just interested in parks in North Texas but good trails anywhere in Texas. We like to camp when on vacation and we're looking for alternatives to Co. and NM. I've been looking at the TPWD listing...
    http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/a...ke/index.phtml

    Anyone ride any of these ????

    I've now got my camera 'attached' to my pack so I'll start posting some pics of the trails in this area. I may have to start a new thread... 'photos of state park trails'.

  7. #7
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    Be sure to try out Flat Rock Ranch , www.flatrockranch.net, near Comfort & Camp Eagle, www.campeagle.org, near Rocksprings. They aren't State parks but they have some of the best riding in Texas. Both offer camping.
    I'll second Palo Diro, great trails & scenery, & San Angelo, lots of trails. Try to hook up with someone from there, Ive ridden there several time & still haven't found all the trails.

  8. #8

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    Thanks, guys. I'm putting San Angelo and Palo Duro on my to do list. Those other camps linked to look good as well. The wife travels down to that area occasionally... I may have to plan a little side trip.

    Mikey

  9. #9
    Livin' the Dream
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    Cedar Hill State Park is one to consider as well.
    DO RIGHT AND FEAR NO MAN

  10. #10

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    Yep, I've been checking out the Cedar Hill trail on the net. I camped there the day the park opened. I beleive it was Memorial day...don't remember the year. It was a mad house...tornadoes everywhere...a non stop parade of cars with their bases boooooming, and fire ants like I've never seen before or since. I've never been back...but the trail sounds fantastic. I may have to re-think things. Plus I have family in Grand Prarie, bout 5 miles up the road. The trail sounds chalenging at the least.

    I've got a nephew in Glen Rose (Dinosaur Valley SP anyone?) that MTBs...I'll have to see if he can meet me at Cedar Hill sometime. I'll bring bug spray and ear plugs.

    Mikey

  11. #11
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    Not a stae park, but have you been to The Breaks at Bar H? It's in Saint Jo, which shouldn't be too much of a drive for you. They have a good variety of trails and hookups for your camper. The trails at Lake Murray are good also.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by c_m_shooter
    Not a stae park, but have you been to The Breaks at Bar H? It's in Saint Jo, which shouldn't be too much of a drive for you. They have a good variety of trails and hookups for your camper. The trails at Lake Murray are good also.
    Thanks shooter,
    I know several people that have done the Breaks at Bar H and they say it's great. It's been my understanding that they had the trails closed for quite some time due to all the flooding we had up here last year. I assume they are open again and will definately go there when the wheather cools just a bit. (I don't camp in 100* temps without hookups. I know...I'm a softy) We have a trip planed for Lake Murray in September.

    (I am a roady that recently took up MTBing if you are wondering why I haven't done all these trails up here yet...I've got a really nice Merlin road bike that's collecting dust because I haven't touched it since getting my $400 Giant last fall...I'm having a blast!)

    Mikey

  13. #13
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    There are hookups at Bar H. Some of the trails are tore up because of a big grassfire a couple weeks back. The fire department did some damge with their bulldozers, and a lot of the west part of the property is pretty burnt. Most of the trails are in great shape, we had a six hour race out there on Saturday. A lot of maintenance was done to get the place ready to ride, the trails that are open are in as good of shape as i've seen them.

  14. #14

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    Thanks again shooter...HOOK UPS? Well...I'm there.

    Mikey

  15. #15

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    MikeyLikesIt said..."Thanks, I don't live far from Johnson Branch, but every time I've planned to ride there it rains the day before and they close the trail. Maybe I'll ride it in the morning...we need the rain."

    Well, the wife and I, along with our youngest son decided to try Johnson Branch SP again today. Temps in the 100s for days on end...dry as a bone...so we get there about 7:30am. (It's a one hour drive from our house.) Sign at entrance says 'DORBA Trail CLOSED". THEY'VE HAD RAIN! Oh well, I'm glad someone is getting rain here in N Texas.

    I will never go to JB again without calling ahead first...no matter how long the drought!

    BTW, the IDB trail was open...but by the time we checked out the park (really nice) it was already starting to cook so we just rode the paths and roads and headed home. And we still had fun...

    Mikey

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyLikesIt
    I've now got my camera 'attached' to my pack so I'll start posting some pics of the trails in this area. I may have to start a new thread... 'photos of state park trails'.
    BTW, last week my son and I road Cross Timbers trail and before I got 100 yds of the pavement I endoed and busted my camera. No pics of any trails for a while as promised...shopping for a new one.

    Mikey

  17. #17
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    San Antonio/Hill Country.

    Close to SA.

    Government Canyon SNA

    Hill Country SNA, Bandera


    FRRider also mentioned Flat Rock Ranch and Camp Eagle. Flat Rock has RV hook-ups and Camp Eagle has awesome facilities
    aLaN AT BikeMojo DOT com

  18. #18

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    Thanks for the links Mojo. I came this close (holding my figers an inch apart) to riding bandera...the wife had buisiness down there, last year, and I had planed to go with her...her trip cancelled at the last minute. Oh well. (I like trips that are paid for by someone else )

    Just downloaded the map of Government Canyon...looks like a must do when I'm down that way.

    Mikey

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyLikesIt
    Thanks for the links Mojo. I came this close (holding my figers an inch apart) to riding bandera...the wife had buisiness down there, last year, and I had planed to go with her...her trip cancelled at the last minute. Oh well. (I like trips that are paid for by someone else )

    Just downloaded the map of Government Canyon...looks like a must do when I'm down that way.

    Mikey


    Drop me a line if you are headed to the SA area.


    There is enough here to make your trip worth while...

    GCNA
    HCNA
    Flat Rock Ranch
    Camp Eagle

    Perfect quadrupleheader
    aLaN AT BikeMojo DOT com

  20. #20

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    Thanks Mojo, will do. Nothing in the works as of now, but I'll remember your invitation.

    Mikey

  21. #21
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    If you decide to check out San Angelo, let me know. We're out there fairly often. We have loops that vary from 6-25 miles of almost all single track.

    Lots of mesquite and cactus out here, so when you head our way, make sure you have Stan's or Slime running in the tires. We fix lots of flats.

    More info here:

    http://www.sanangelobicycle.com/

    We also have a 6 hour race coming up on September 20.

    Y'all come on out.

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by kpomtb
    If you decide to check out San Angelo, let me know. We're out there fairly often. We have loops that vary from 6-25 miles of almost all single track.

    Lots of mesquite and cactus out here, so when you head our way, make sure you have Stan's or Slime running in the tires. We fix lots of flats.

    More info here:

    http://www.sanangelobicycle.com/

    We also have a 6 hour race coming up on September 20.

    Y'all come on out.
    Thanks for the invite and the link, kpomtb. San Angelo definately on my to do list...but, I do want to ride with someone familiar with the trails...miss too much otherwise.

    If you don't mind, PM me next time your headed that way (and visa versa) and I'll see If I can make It...it's a long drive but not so far that I couldn't do a weekender.

    Don't think I'm ready for the race...yet.

    Mikey

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyLikesIt
    If you don't mind, PM me next time your headed that way (and visa versa) and I'll see If I can make It...it's a long drive but not so far that I couldn't do a weekender.

    Don't think I'm ready for the race...yet.

    Mikey

    It's a 4 mile drive to the park for me so whenever you have time to make the trip out, just let me know. I'm free most weekends.

    Oh, and you could always do the race as a 2 person team.

  24. #24

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    Thanks, kpomtb.

    Mikey

  25. #25
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    If you haven't ridden Dinosaur valley yet you should plan a trip to visit your nephew and check it out. Not too hard climb wise, but very scenic with some technical rocky areas, creek beds etc. lots of fun... also great for camping (hook ups). Then about 20 miles east on hwy 67 there's Cleburne state park, with an easy inner loop with lots of shade, an outer loop with a bit more sun exposure and some lung busting (for me) climbs, also with RV hook ups and a small lake to cool off in this oppressive heat.There are usually group rides with the LBS on Tues. and Thurs. evenings, so a great way to experience the trail!

  26. #26

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    Thanks KeithRad,
    Yeah, I've done Dinosaur Valley and may head back down that way in the next few weeks (maybe Labor Day weekend?). I haven't done Cleburne yet but some of the local guys say it is a real nice trail...I'll have to take the time to ride it when we're down there. The owner of my LBS says he likes Cleburne better than DV.

    I'm going to Johnson Branch again Friday if the trail is open...wish me luck.

    Thanks again,
    Mikey

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeyLikesIt
    ...I'm going to Johnson Branch again Friday if the trail is open...wish me luck...
    Well, no such luck. Open all week, but rained once again the night before...trail closed. I'd like to ride this trail someday, but I'm beginning to think someone up there doesn't want me to.

    Not complaining (much)...we needed the rain.

    Mikey

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