Saturday, May 21, 2011

Nice Place to Run: Sansom Park

This morning I met up with a couple dozen new friends and familiar faces at an NTTR club run at Sansom Park.  Fred and Char Thompson organized the run, fresh off their epic Rim to Rim to Rim Grand Canyon adventure (this is one run I'd love to do one day; read about the Thompson's experience at  We met up at the parking lot in progress and hit the trail at 8.

For some reason, I have never made it over here before.  It's about as far from home as Cedar Ridge or Oak Cliff Nature Preserve, if not a little closer, and every bit as enjoyable.  It's more technical than Oak Cliff, maybe not quite as technical as Cedar Ridge.  The advantage it has over Cedar Ridge is that it drains much better.  We've had some pretty good rain the last couple of days, but the trails were in great shape.  It was just muddy enough to keep the mountain bikers home, but not so muddy that runners ended up with mud bricks over their shoes.
Trail running at its best: single track through leafy woods, hardly a flat spot in sight!
As is often the case with trails like this, created and maintained by mountain bikers, there are lots of loops and interconnecting trails.  The big loop the Thompsons marked out was about 8 miles, but you can easily find longer or shorter routes.  The first loop I ran with a couple of different people, then set out on the second alone.  I was going so slowly, and stopping to take pictures, that I thought surely someone would catch me, but they never did.  I would have liked someone to pace with; the second loop ended up being as much nature hike as trail run.
This is a beautiful spot, located near the dam where Lake Worth spills into the Trinity River.  The cactus blossoms have come and gone, but the yucca and lots of wildflowers were blooming.  I saw some squirrels, of course, saw several cardinals, caught a glimpse of a pair of deer bounding away through the underbrush, and scared away some lizards, who scurried away in the leaves.  There are views of Lake Worth and Carswell Joint Reserve Base, and of the waterfall just below the dam.  Most of the time, there was so little noise I could convince myself I was miles from civilization, until the silence was shattered by a jet taking off from Carswell!
Waterfall and a fishing spot just below the dam.
Another view of the waterfall.
It got a little hot and humid by the time I was done, but this was a great run at a great spot.  I'll have to come run there again soon!
Bluffs above the trail.
It's hard to see them in this picture, but this hillside had lots of little flower.
 And here are more flowers:

No comments:

Post a Comment