I was looking for something to insert between bookended meetings in Fort Worth. I found it in the form of a trek on the Trinity Trail. Trinity Trail | IOS App is a system of trails between Benbrook, a community south of Fort Worth, circling West then North the East of downtown Fort Worth before ending at Gateway Park. Its a 60+ mile return but I only had time for the 20 mile return from Benbrook | Art Cowsen Trailhead to University Drive | Crystelle Waggoner Trailhead. This path I saw as three segments (1) Benbrook to Bellaire Blvd (2) Bellaire Blvd until Trinity Chapel (3) Along the river to University Dr.
Excellent. In all parts of the trail there was a paved path, very wide and clearly marked. In most parts there was also a parallel dirt path which, along the river, was also very wide and clearly marked. The paved paths looked brand new!
None. There was no change in surface elevation, no natural obstacles, and very little hairpin or switchback turns. The only challenge will be accomplishing the distance you want in the time you want.
There were portapotties and drinking fountains (both human and pet) every 2-3 miles. The trailhead in Benbrook had about 30 parking spaces, it was nowhere near full when I arrived, nor when I left. I noticed no stores/kiosks/restaurants along the path I took, except at the end near University St. Park benches were about every quarter mile.
The first segment from Benbrook was largely wooded, occasionally broken up with large patches of wildflowers, and pastoral scenes with horses and cows. There were a number of creeks with narrow bridges.
The second segment along Bellaire Blvd. took me through an older, immaculately manicured neighborhood. All lovely but it was a neighborhood, so not interesting for me. This segment was the shortest and ended at the Trinity Chapel.
The third segment was the path along the river. It seemed better to be on the North (West) side of the river (there are trails on either side). This way I had the river view overlooking the large acreage estates, country clubs and golf courses on the South (East) side as scenery. Occasionally downtown Fort Worth stuck it head out above the treeline to remind me of my proximity to the city.
The majority of people on this trail are cyclists. Not your my-doc-told-me-to-exercise-my-fat-ass variety, rather the ones with focus and intensity, which to me meant, seriously competitive cyclists. They were very aware of and courteous to pedestrians. The “bike left”, “passing left” vocal warnings were common and appreciated.
Along the first segment I was somewhat overwhelmed by the smell of roses and honeysuckles but this ebbed and flowed as the scenery changed from dense woods to pasture. The shade along this segment was welcomed in the afternoon sun.
“The trail” in the second segment was actually just walking along the bike path in the street. It was a wide path and the motorists were very aware of and courteous to pedestrians. This was a boring stretch but it was also the shortest.
The third segment was people dense and more prone to joggers, large groups traveling together and women with strollers. At the end, near University Dr, the smell of barbeque and coffee made itself present thanks to a number of eateries on the surface streets just above the trail.
Overall a good 20 mile walk! I’ll be back to walk another segment of the Trinity Trail sometime over the summer!