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The Greenway Trails of San Antonio - Part I

29 Jun 2014

By Rob Tillman, author of Vapors Rising

Part I:

Salado Creek route on a hill north of runway 22
Lions Park lake
Crossing at river at Mission Reach
Navigating a switchback at Medina River

San Antonio constructed over 85 miles of greenway trails that run along major streams of the city—the San Antonio River, Salado Creek, and Leon Creek. Since the beginning of 2014, Solid Rock Riders captured many of these trails on video. You can view these at our YouTube link

We present you a synopsis of these trails. At the conclusion, we list trails that we plan to review for Part II during this summer.

Salado Creek North (McAllister to Fort Sam Houston segment)

This segment connects McAllister Park Dog Park to Lady Bird Johnson Park and Robert Tobin Park. The trail is a very popular destination for cyclists and joggers in northeast San Antonio who frequent McAllister. The most popular trailhead is at the "Dog Park". As a highlight, the trail tracks across the northern portion of the airfield of San Antonio International Airport. This provides an opportunity to watch jetliners scream overhead. Please don't wander off the path while on airport property; otherwise, alarms are tripped and the police are called.

Due to construction delays, riders are having to cross a make-shift crossing over Wurzbach Parkway; however, once complete, riders will be routed under the Mud Creek overpass. Also, construction at Rittiman Road poses obstacles for riders who wish to continue their ride to the backside of Fort Sam Houston.

Salado Creek South (West of Fort Sam Houston to Lions Park)

This leisure trail runs between the Sequin Rd. trailhead located across from Howard Johnson's and tracks through several city and county parks before it reaches South Side Lions Park. A good part of this trail is shaded, thus making it a good choice during warmer days. Plans call for extending this trail further south to SE Military Drive and Republic Golf Course.

Mission Reach

This premiere trail serves as an extension to the San Antonio River Walk at the Blue Star Arts Complex and ends at the Mission San Francisco de la Espada, about 9 miles downstream. For the history buffs, this trail provides easy access to the four missions in the San Antonio Missions Historic National Park. Parts of this trail have paths on both sides of the river; most of the ride is under open skies.

Medina River Natural Area

This venue is situated on archaeological grounds that date back 15,000 years. In 1992, voters halted the Applewhite Reservoir project that would have destroyed the preserve. The main trailhead is on Hwy 16 and another trailhead is on Applewhite Road; the trail runs seven miles and ends at a cul de sec. Due to terrain, there are six switchbacks that can make this trail challenging for inexperienced riders. Substantial parts are under open sky.

Future Trails to be reviewed:

River Walk (from Blue Star to Zoo)
Salado Creek (Walker Ranch Park to Huebner trailhead segment)
Leon Creek (Valero Park to Ingram Park Mall segment)

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