I rode Keg Creek on Sunday, July 29, 2018 to the Split Rock on Mistletoe and back via the connector having first spent 30 minutes trying to figure out where to park. I had never ridden this trail but had seen the trail markers on Washington Road some years ago and assumed that they were still in place...not so. I ended up parking on the east side of the bridge on Washington where the trail marker used to be and found the entrance to Keg, somewhat littered but visible. I began to wonder early on if the trail had been abandoned as there was fall-down seemingly every fifty yards and the path was at least an inch thick in spongy pine needles, and oh my, the spiders: if bike-trail spiders were black widows, I would have been dead within a 100 yards. I carried on though, and took the old forest service road up to Keg Point Road and on out to Mistletoe; lost sight of the trail a couple of times near the Split Rock, but then decided to turn around there having run out of water. I made it back to the west side of the Washington Road bridge and only then discovered the parking spot on the north side of the road at Keg Creek Drive. It had begun to rain, but I rather enjoyed it, and finally crossed over the bridge back to my vehicle. All in all a "discoverable" ride, very tedious but interesting; about 21 miles.
Thanks so much for the update and for riding the trail.
The trail isn’t abandoned but it has not been actively maintained recently for three reasons.
First was a bridge that was out for a long period of time meant anyone who rode there couldn’t simply complete the loop they would have to backtrack each time they rode the trail. That was a deterrent to some people continuing to ride this trail and regular riders are critical to trail health.
Second was loggers who had permission to log near the trail inadvertently dropped trees across the trail at one point and it was quite a while before the trail was even passable again.
Third is simply the lack of volunteers to get these trails cleaned up. We have about 150 miles of trail locally (the furthest just over an hour) that have to be maintained. The furthest, the Long Cane Horse Trail is well maintained by some cyclists in Greenwood (about 26 miles). The three most heavily used trails close to Augusta (FATS app 36 miles), Bartram (app 17.5) and the Augusta Canal single track (app 4 miles) get the most attention since they are used the most. The remainder of the trails (Modoc, Turkey Creek, Hickory Knob trails, Wine Creek, Horn Creek, Mistletoe and Keg) which make up the rest of the 150 suffer from lack of attention. It’s really a shame because these are the old school, classic singletrack trails in the area.
We have the annual Mowathon scheduled for Turkey Creek on Sunday, August 26th. If you’d like to come give us a hand (or anyone reading this) please reach out to us at email@example.com
We hold Explore the Trail rides each month fall through spring on the outlying trails. Next trail ride up will be Turkey Creek/Wine Creek on Sep 1st. The weekend after the Mowathon. Next trail ride will be the Hickory Knob Trail in October so we’ll try to schedule a work party in September for that trail and so on. We’ll post the work parties and the rides here on the forum, we hope you will come participate in both!