SFA Trails in July

It’s been awhile since my last post. Grad school is keeping me busy. So are trips to Schlitterbahn and yard work.

Yesterday saw a slight cool-down due to northerly breezes and I took advantage. It was in the mid-90’s when I left and down to the mid-80’s when I finished up.

Last week we had a last maintenance day before Michael’s (the man in charge) last day before his move. He has left the trail work under the watchful eye of his grad student. We have a couple minor projects to do…but we’ve got a major one to do. We’ve got a bunch of signage now that we need to install. I hear that folks are riding our trails from as far away as Houston and enjoying them except for the fact that our signage isn’t so good. We’re still waiting on our kiosk signs for three of our trailheads, but having signs on the trails themselves should be helpful. We also got a new jump built on the downhill loop that sends riders over the maintenance road. It’s really more of a drop, but since the trail is already going downhill, you can get some substantial air on it. It helps us out from a maintenance standpoint because there’s a long wooden bridge leading up to it that crosses over an area that gets very soggy during the wetter times of the year.

My ride was an enjoyable one. I’ve been trying to get some folks together to do some night riding, but again I’ve got a no-go. I had another night ride a few weeks ago (that I did not post) and had similar results. I announced it, but nobody showed. I did meet Jim out on the trails (one of the other builders), though. But he was just finishing his ride while I was only about halfway through mine.

The trails are holding up well in our super dry weather, to be honest. We’ve got one area that always gets tough with deep, loose sand this time of year, and it’s just the same as it always is in the summer. Otherwise, everything looks pretty good. We’re having some minor trouble with people shortcutting switchbacks and creating a new entrance to the trails off of Starr into the lower traffic circle. Please don’t do this, folks. Normally the vegetation grows vigorously enough to keep these lines from getting more attention, but this year if just one person goes off trail, it starts to look like an actual trail because the vegetation isn’t growing back very quickly. Timber has been placed over these lines to block them, but more drastic measures may need to be taken if people keep moving the timber. Think of the barriers on the pipeline right-of-way. We have extra materials available. If you really want to cut into the trails from Starr, look for where the service road comes out. Enter there, don’t create a new entrance through the woods.

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