Thursday, February 15, 2018

Myers Park's Hidden Trail

If you don't know it's there, it is easy to miss the Briar Creek Greenway tucked neatly behind Myers Park High School. But it is well worth seeking out.

The 0.91 mile (one way) gravel trail, which follows Briar Creek behind the school between Colony Road and Runnymeade Lane, serves as the home cross country course for Myers Park (Go Mustangs!).
As a high-schooler, I put in many fun, exhausting miles there. Back then, though, it was a little more than a beaten path and some drain pipes. Now, it's a bona fide greenway, wide, smooth and well maintained.
Less than five miles from uptown, it's a lovely option for taking a hike in the woods without committing to a commute. With smooth, rolling terrain, it's also good for beginner mountain bikers.
If you’re feeling adventurous, you can check out some of the natural paths carved in the wooded area on either side of the main trail. See trail map.

This section of greenway is home to river otters and other water critters. There are benches along the creek to take a break and enjoy wildlife.
You'll also find the remains of the foundation remains of the old Isaac Newton Alexander grist mill, circa 1857, which is listed on the Mecklenburg County Historical Registry. The remnants are substantial and marked with an informational sign.
Though it is short and tucked between high-traffic areas, the trail is quiet and secluded. If you're itching to escape to nature close to home, I think you'll find the Briar Creek Greenway satisfying and enjoyable.

Note: The Briar Creek Greenway will eventually run 6 miles. through Charlotte, connecting to the Little Sugar Creek Greenway. There's currently another accessible short section between the Plaza Midwood and Merry Oaks neighborhoods. At this time, there is no targeted timeframe for development of the rest of Briar Creek Greenway, but one day there will be sections running from Central Ave. to Commonwealth Ave., from Bay St. to Monroe Rd., and from Manning Dr. to Marion Diehl Park.

How to get there:

Park at Myers Park High School at 2400 Colony Rd. Charlotte, NC 28209 (after school hours and on weekends). On foot, follow Colony Rd. away from the school. The trailhead will be on your left at the creek before you reach Picardy Pl.
Don't forget to pack:
  • Comfy hiking shoes:
  • Mountain bike and helmet: This is a very easy beginner trail.
  • Sunscreen, hats and sunglasses: This is a shady trail, but has bright, open stretches.
  • Water: Stay hydrated!

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