May 15, 2015
This week’s half-day-Thursday, ran a little late, and I didn’t get to the trail head until 4pm. I decided to hit Slate Lick area, which is an amazing area that is very popular with excellent trails and creek crossings. With Slate Lick most equestrians pull down the long entrance road to a field on the left where there is ample parking, and generally other horse trailers.
I did this and then headed down the road, and took the right split, 230 Slate Lick.
This is well maintained fire road, and cars can still drive down and park closer in just before a closed gate.
I passed the gate, and a family going fishing, and headed along, over a few creek crossings and to the lake.
On some previous posts I rode from Turner Run down to Slate Lick. the photos below point to the areas that I came/in at.
After passing the lake I headed into the woods, and followed the well marked twisty trail over creeks and through the trees. At one point there is a left hand turn, that goes up the hill, veering back, that cuts this loop more than in half. I probably should have taken this turn.
I saw these cool, fresh mushrooms on this tree.
This trail eventually winds out, maybe 6 miles along, into a sort of grassy clearing.
Turning left puts you onto a fire road, 240 I believe, and eventually becomes an incredible uphill climb. I kept thinking, geeze, this has got to end soon. Nope, it just kept climbing. Of course there were some great views on the climb, but my goodness, keep on going. This was certainly the least exciting part of the loop.
Eventually there is an open gate, and then a bit of a clearing with a marked trail, 422, on the left.
Right after starting out on 422, the trail splits. the left hand branch is just about as dominant as the right hand, and I am calling it the 422 North since it sits north of the main 422. It is heavily ridden and well established. It winds pleasantly through the woods. I was cantering along part of the trail and saw this little man built shelter. Not the best photo, but it gave me a chuckle. “Did someone find it was too late to make it back before dark?”
Somewhat more than half way along this section of trail another trail meets up with it from the left coming up the hill. This is the split that could have been taken many miles ago. But continuing on, this trail eventually pops back out at the Hog Pen side of the fire road, and right back to the parking area.
Its a pretty good length loop, and I don’t know what I was thinking taking it on a Thursday afternoon. It was a great day for a ride, in the upper 50s and sunny. Ill have to spend some more time at Slate Lick in the coming months. There are so many little trails and places to adventure and explore. And its nice to be on well established and used horse trails.