We are a pretty active family and always enjoy a great hike. Now that our kids are older, though, they are also able to mountain bike while we run along beside them. We’ve discovered new local trails in the process, great for mountain biking beginners, in addition to our tried and true favorites like Twin Falls, Sculpture Falls, Spy Glass, and Bull Creek.
- Sunset Valley – For those in South Austin there are a few miles of easy trails off of Brodie Lane and south of Jones Road. We usually park just behind the Sunset Valley shopping center and hop on them. You can grab dinner after at Doc’s backyard with their new play area.
- Slaughter Trail – Pretty fun, easy trail. Some wide open fields and some shaded paths. We grabbed burgers at P. Terry’s on way home.
- Onion Creek – Not too technical. We just headed out and back, crossing over the creekbed. We ate dinner at Chipotle on Stassney on the way home.
- Walnut Creek – Fun twists and turns on “Tangle of Loops” trail. And a few fun downhills that kids could tackle well. Jumped in pool afterwards and grabbed Korean food on North Lamar.
- Mary Moore Searight Park – We’ve run this trail many times. Can grab dinner at Jason’s Deli after.
I’d encourage any family with kids to take them mountain biking! (as a selfish incentive for runners, it is always more fun to run on a trail anyway) But it also boosts the child’s confidence in crazy ways as they learn to take fun risks. They have to look ahead, look down, think fast, and act quick all at the same time. Total focus. Their sweaty, dusty smiles at the end prove that they had a blast – and give us our reward as parents.