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The Parklands

Trail Review: A test ride on Karst Climb

If you were in Broad Run Park on Friday, October 14, 2016 and heard an exuberant “Woohoooo!” coming from the woods, I hope you weren’t alarmed. It was just me test-riding the new Karst Climb trail.

I was burdened with this terrible task* earlier that week when I received word that the trail was nearing completion and we wanted someone with “fresh eyes” to check it out and write up a quick synopsis. Well, the trail has been tested and here’s what I think:

I’m in love. (Did my first sentence give that away?)

This short trail is a great, soft-surface alternative to the Louisville Loop for folks wanting to get from the south end of Broad Run Park (near the Cliffside Paddling Access) up to the Highland Crossing trail. I logged 1.9 miles from the Cliffside Paddling Access parking lot up to the top of the trail near Highland Crossing and back down to the lot where I started.

It’s worth noting that the Karst Climb was given its name for a reason. The trail is a steady climb to the top, but mellow enough that I never felt like I had to dismount my bike. Also worth noting: I am not one of those ultra-fit cyclists who enjoys climbing (not hating on you guys and gals) and I may or may not have had cookies for breakfast that day. Just wanted to you to have some context for my definition of a “mellow climb”.

The entire way up, I was in awe of how beautiful this trail is. I was treated to a views of a multi-tiered waterfall (sans water – it hadn’t rained for days), I rolled through a secluded cedar grove, and I got to test my skills on some of the rock gardens along the way. Once I got to the top, I was ready for a fun descent, and I wasn’t disappointed.

The near-constant twists and turns kept me from gaining too much speed, which is a good thing – it’s important to remember that in the future I won’t be the only one on this trail and keeping a safe speed is a big part of respecting your fellow trail users. The rollers along the way is where the “whoohoo!” came in to the story, and there is no shortage of them to keep things fun.

I can’t wait to hear what everyone thinks of this trail once it opens. It’s a fun shortcut for the adventure-minded and I don’t think it will take people long to fall in love with it, just like I did.

*Kidding of course. This is one of the many reasons I love my job.