Amid the lush landscapes of Mandeville, Louisiana, lies a trail that might surprise a few cycling enthusiasts. St Tammany Trace Bike Path, primarily a hiking trail, now doubles as a serene escape for cyclists. While it doesn't offer the adrenaline rush of an intricate mountain biking trail, its simplicity and nature-centric ambiance are its main allure.
- Distance: 6 mi
- Level: Easy
- Route type: Loop
- City: Mandeville
- State: Louisiana
Often, the charm of a trail isn't in its challenges but in its environment. The St Tammany Trace Bike Path is testament to this. The route is characterized by its:
- Flat terrain: Making it ideal for novice cyclists or those just looking for a relaxed ride.
- Double-track structure: As it's groomed mainly for hikers and maintained with golf carts and 4-wheelers.
- Natural scenery: Offering riders a break from urban settings and an immersion in Mandeville's picturesque nature.
However, ensure to have insect repellent handy, as this nature ride does come with its share of little winged companions.
Located on US190, just to the east of Mandeville, Louisiana, accessing the trail is a breeze. The St Tammany Trace Bike Path seamlessly intersects the upper portion of the State Park, making it a convenient and direct entrance for riders.
- Though scenic, some riders feel the trail lacks challenges and is more suited to those prioritizing a nature-focused ride. Its expansive and flat path, interspersed with gentle turns, is more of a leisurely ride than a technical workout.
- Watch out for spiders! Notably, there are large webs and banana spiders overhead. While these creatures are harmless, they can be a bit unsettling. Being engrossed in dodging them can distract from the trail's minor obstacles like small holes and roots. For spider-wary cyclists, perhaps a cooler day might reduce the sightings.
- For those seeking a break from urban cycling or wishing to introduce young ones to the joys of riding, the trail serves as a relaxed afternoon escape.
In a world where challenges often take precedence, the St Tammany Trace Bike Path reminds riders of the simple pleasures of cycling. While it might not refine trail riding skills, it promises a peaceful ride amidst nature, proving that sometimes, a laid-back pedal is all that's needed.