by: megan winkler
It’s that time of year again…New Year, new fitness resolutions. One of our favorite ways to stay fit is to take the workout outside of the walls of the gym and explore nature, whether on bike or on foot. At Walsh, over eight miles of 5’, 6’ and 10’ trails will give our first residents access to explore the beauty of their neighborhood, connect with new neighbors and enjoy nature in some of the most beautiful, rolling prairie you will find in Fort Worth. Until then, and because we are all starting our New Years resolutions now instead of later, we thought we would share our favorite hike and bike trails that are immediately accessible. Fort Worth is home to striking hike and bike trails with difficulty levels ranging from beginner to expert, all sure to make those resolutions a lifestyle by the time you move into Walsh.
Nearly 400 acres of pristine park land can be found on the east side of Eagle Mountain Lake off Morris Dido Newark Road. With five miles of maintained hiking trails, Eagle Mountain Park allows for a comfortable hiking experience, regardless of age or experience level. Six separate trails, including the scenic quarter-mile Overlook Trail, offer a variety of hiking options. The free park is open during the day and provides public restrooms, water fountains, and incredible lake views.
The Fort Worth Nature Center & Refuge boasts more than 20 miles of hiking trails. Just a half-hour from downtown Fort Worth, the nature center features wetlands and forest that make trail runners feel further out of town than they really are. Free-roaming wildlife including prairie dogs and bison, and educational programs throughout the year, mean even the youngest guests will love a day at the refuge. There’s a small charge for admission: $5 for adults, $2 for children ages 3 to 12, $3 for seniors. Be sure to check the website for upcoming events and seasonal schedules.
Gateway Park is the second trial project adopted by the Fort Worth Mountain Bikers’ Association. Split into two sections – one on the west side of the Trinity River and the other on the east – the trail offers six miles of gentle terrain. The west side of the trail is a 3.5-mile-long loop, while the east side is 3.5 miles of hilly terrain. Both sections are ideal for beginner mountain bikers, although intermediate cyclists enjoy taking to the trails here as well. Leashed dogs are allowed, and trails are open to the public for both hiking and cycling.
Maintained by the Fort Worth Mountain Bikers’ Association, Marion Sansom Park offers several interconnecting loops of trails near Lake Worth. The park is free to cyclists and hikers who will enjoy winding loops of expert trails throughout; it’s a favorite among area enthusiasts. Beginning bike riders will find the trails to be a serious challenge and might be better off hiking first to get a feel for them.
If you’re willing to travel to Grapevine, North Shore Trail is a must for cyclists. The trail runs for about 10 miles along the north side of Lake Grapevine – from Rockledge Park to Twin Coves Park – and features moderately difficult trails, with three different trailheads: Twin Coves Park, Murrell Park, and for a small fee, Rockledge Park. There are public restrooms, pavilions, grills, and picnic areas along the trail, but don’t expect this one to be an easy stroll. The terrain is described as pretty rugged in some areas and is better suited to biking.
Oakmont Park is just part of the more than 70 miles of hiking and biking trails that make up Trinity Trails along the Trinity River. Located at the southernmost part of the trails, Oakmont Park is open for both hiking and cycling. Beautiful bridges and lush scenery make it a favorite for locals, while the paved trail means it’s perfect for all ages and skill levels.