EKG | Prairie Loop | Fun Town
• Park open 5 a.m. to 10 p.m.
• Trailhead located in North West corner
When you arrive at the
trailhead, one of the first things you will probably notice is the impressive
map that is posted. The only problem is that it isn’t exactly accurate,
as it still shows the original loop (all 2.86 miles of it). With that
in mind, it is highly encouraged that you print off the map we have
here; not that you will necessarily get lost, but you will have a better
idea of where you are at.
Shortly after heading down the trail it may seem like there are trails going everywhere…and there are. If you look at the map, however, you will see that sticking to making lefts will keep you on track to riding the entire series of loops that comprise River Legacy Park’s trail system. What’s the difference between going left and right? Well, most of the time taking a right turn will cut your ride shorter, as many bypasses exist for those that wish to avoid any of the loops; in other cases, the trail may split only to come back together, one route being a little more technical or fun than the other. Either way, if you want to keep things simple, take only lefts; you won’t be disappointed. Also, at many intersections there are either arrows or named signs indicating which way to go or the options you have.
About a 1/2 mile into the ride you will come to the split leading to the South Loop. At this point you also have the option of riding EKG. EKG offers a little more rolling terrain with some decent down and ups that seem to keep coming, though they might be a bit too challenging or fast for most beginners. EKG can certainly get the heart going (or at least smiling). For the beginners, don’t worry, there are still plenty of whoop-dee-dos along the South Loop itself to keep everyone entertained.
Next on the trail comes Prairie Loop. This loop lets you relax a little as you wind along the tall grasses and occasional trees on your way to West Loop and Fun Town. Just remember, prairies typically have plenty of grass, but few trees. If the sun is blazing down you might consider taking the bypass and avoiding Prairie Loop, though.
After following along Loop 2 for a little ways you will arrive at West Loop; again, you have the option of taking the bypass, but there’s no good reason to do so. The West Loop is a nice ride as you wind your way through the trees, occasionally dipping in and out of the sun, on your way to some of River Legacy’s most fun and expert sections, appropriately named “Fun Town.” If I seemed to discourage new riders from EKG, rest assured I would certainly do the same at this point. Fun Town starts out with a steep, quick descent leading into a quick climb as it banks right and takes you a long a rolling stretch of singletrack…then comes perhaps one of the most thrilling sections: a quick down, a short little up, down again into a banked turn (practically a wall ride) that sends you right back up and out. If you aren’t smiling at this point you might consider seeking professional help. The trails of Fun Town continue winding and rolling, with several offshoots that offer up even more fun (hence the reason this section of the map appears like a twisted mess). Once you get the flow of Fun Town’s trails, however, you could probably ride here for hours.
As you make your way out of Fun Town and the West Loop, you will continue along Loop 2 until you reach the North Loop. Again, the option to bypass is yours. The North Loop offers up nearly another mile of fast, winding, hard packed singletrack, suitable for riders of all levels. Continuing on along Loop 2 will bring you to Ramp Loop. As the name implies, this very short loop features a wood ramp for your air-catching pleasure. Riding with someone not so fond of both tires being off the ground? Don’t worry! There’s a path that circumvents the ramp. Feel free to repeat. Moving on, you will hit the Little North Loop for roughly a 1/3 of another mile of singletrack. Shortly after is Log Loop. Similar to Ramp Loop, the option to bypass the obstacle is there.
River Legacy Park is certainly a well-laid out trail and plenty of fun to ride, whether your pace is fast or not so much; however, its real beauty lies in the fact that it accommodates any and all riders equally and, thanks to the many bypasses and trail splits, allows you to customize your ride in any way you want.
~ MountainBikeTx.com(Aug 2010)