Santa Fe Trail and White Rock Lake Trail Link: Saddle Up!
It’s open for business, and you heard it here first! Unless you got the same email that I received this morning from the “Friends of the Santa Fe Trail“. I have been waiting for this day for quite some time, but I figured that there would be some sort of Grand Opening for such an important event. Once I knew that the trail connection was complete, I vowed to leave work early to ride across that Garland Rd. bridge. And so I did.
Leave early………it was the completion of the Winsted Bridge that had been holding it all up, so I drove by that on they way home to verify. Yup! I see a bicyclist:
I got on my recently restored and refurbished Fuji road bike and hit the trail. Sure enough, right there behind the Spillway at Garland Rd., the link to the Santa Fe Trail from the White Rock Lake Trail is open:
How exciting! I’ve been watching this construction for several years, and now it’s finsihed. I immediately saw a guy coming down the trail from the other direction.
The heavy use of the trail link on Day One was gratifying to me. I saw a constant stream of riders and walkers in both directions the entire time that I was there. Here is the completed bridge over Winsted (the same bridge in the first photo):
Again, constant trail use. This photo shows both the Winsted Bridge and the Garland Rd. Bridge in the distance:
And look at this cool bike that I saw!
Oh, wait. That’s my bike. My 1978 Fuji S12-S LTD, rebuilt from the ground up.
Finally, to the bridge over Garland Rd. When I heard this bridge was open, there was no way in hell that I wasn’t going to ride across it on Day One. Here is the view down Garland Rd. looking north:
See that Volkswagen down there with the sunroof? The woman in the car was taking my photo, so I took hers and waved. Her positive response was typical of the responses of everyone that I talked with and saw there today.
This nice Mom and Daughter were so excited, because they live across Garland Rd. from the Lake. Until now, there was no safe way for them to cross the road and enjoy the Crown Jewel of the Dallas Parks System, White Rock Lake Park.
Here is Garland Rd. looking south from the bridge:
It’s nice to be on a bike and see that and not worry about rush hour traffic one bit.
I might not have been the first one to ride my bike across that bridge, but I was the first one to give it a proper salute on Day One!
It’s a lovely bridge, and an important link. As I rode home, on the day before Thanksgiving, I reflected upon the transformative effect that such trails, and links, have upon cities and neighborhoods. They bring us together. They connect, rather than divide. And for a little while, at least, they get us out of our cars and let us stretch our legs a bit.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.
Michael W. Hubbard
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