singletrack; wide path
• Barbeque pits
• Basketball, tennis and volleyball courts
• Disc golf
• Fishing piers
• Soccer and multipurpose fields
• Picnic tables and shelters
• Reservable facilities
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• Sections of trail intersect or travel along the equestrian trail
Mary Moore Searight Park
may not be the first trail that comes to mind when you think of what
Austin has to offer; as a matter-of-fact, as this review is written,
MountainBikeTx.com is the only mountain biking site that you will find
Austin’s Mary Moore Searight Park listed in detail, so it may not come
to mind at all. Nevertheless, the trails found here can be fun, even
if they aren’t the most technical in the area.
When you are driving to Mary Moore you definitely have to keep an eye out for your turn, as the park sign is partially obscured by a nearby tree. Once you find the turn, however, follow the road on back to the main trailhead. The trail itself begins by the restrooms as a paved trail and immediately crosses a small creek, after which it splits. Go left, as indicated on the map, unless you have the desire to ride with horses and there are horses out here.
If you continue along the paved path you will find that in some cases sections are in bad shape and broken up. Some sections are practically nothing more than a gravel path. This paved loop is about a mile and half long and would be ideally suited for someone just getting familiar with mountain biking, since the broken up sections mimic riding off-road. That’s about all the paved loop is good for, unless you consider the workout stations along the length of it that can be used for a circuit training workout.
Unfortunately, the map doesn’t distinguish between paved path and singletrack, though it does differentiate between those and equestrian trails. Just keep in mind that the paved path is the big loop just south of the main trailhead and the singletrack is all the rest to the southeast of the big loop. Just know that if you pay attention to the map as to where you are on the map you will be fine when it comes to navigating the network of singletrack.
I’m not sure why, but when a trail runs along a river or creek, I dig it, and Mary Moore provides just that type of experience. Some sections running along Slaughter Creek even have benches so that you can sit and enjoy the creek and the local wildlife.
Since the trail lacks any established direction of travel (and how could it given the network that it is?) it’s probably easier to simply mention the various types of terrain you will find. There are a few rocky climbs or descents depending on your direction and occasional ledges. You’ll also find a couple root-laced sections down closer to the creek and a couple water crossings (if there’s water). Speaking of water, like many Austin trails, I’d give this one a day or two to dry after a decent rain.
The 4.5 miles of singletrack is winding at times and all in all isn’t too bad. It actually mingles with some of the outlying paved path that serves as a link from singletrack to more singletrack. Something to keep in mind, though, is that there are some sections that are not noted on the map. I am not sure if these will eventually find themselves on a new map or if they are rogue trails, though. Like I mentioned earlier, nothing too technical but a nice change of pace from the usual Austin trails. All in all, a good beginner trail that can even be fun for the more experienced.