Exploring the Sugarcane Trail: A Cyclist's Paradise in Minden's Kisatchie National Forest
Nestled in the heart of Louisiana's Kisatchie National Forest, the rolling trail around Caney Lakes offers riders an immersive experience into nature's bounty. With a backdrop of verdant forests, this 10-mile loop promises not just a ride, but an adventure.
The trail unfolds a series of treasures:
- Breathtaking wildlife: Expect encounters with deer, ducks, raccoons, and the occasional skunk.
- Challenging terrains: From serene lakeside paths to the adrenaline-pumping Lost Woman segment.
- Bridge Crossings: While most stand firm, a few have succumbed to nature's fury, giving riders a little extra challenge.
What Cyclists Are Saying
- "The trail, part of the Sugarcane circuit, provides fantastic climbs and descents. Adding Sugarcane and Kona's Run makes the total trip around 9 miles."
- "Remarkably well-maintained. However, be prepared for a plethora of roots that can test even seasoned riders."
- "Excellent for beginners. Some parts, like the Clockwork Orange section, up the ante with increasing difficulty."
- "The Lost Woman, often dubbed as the 'expert trail,' stood out as a rider's delight during a recent visit in early February."
- "Beware of the occasional slippery bridge, especially after rains. But overall, it's a picturesque ride, especially during fall."
How to Get There
Start off on I-20, leading to 371 north, directed towards Minden. From there, navigate to Pine (also known as 3008) heading north. Signs will guide the way to the recreation area. A mere mile further will lead to the trailhead, located on the right. For an initial relaxed experience, take a left; but for those seeking an immediate challenge, take a right.
Tips for the Ride
- Entry Fee: Upon entering, a day fee of $3 is charged at the park's kiosk.
- Bring Companions: For safety and shared experiences.
- Maintenance: While the trail is majorly well-kept, occasional overgrown patches or fallen trees can be encountered.
Whether one's an amateur rider, a parent introducing their child to the world of mountain biking, or a seasoned pro, the trail around Caney Lakes caters to all. The mesmerizing landscapes, diverse terrains, and well-marked paths make it a top choice for cyclists visiting Minden, Louisiana. So, gear up and embark on this memorable journey through the Kisatchie National Forest.