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Hike & Swim It's a Doggie Thing!

Since Spring 2002

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All PHOTOS can be viewed at the Yahoo Group "HikeSwim"  photo gallery. We currently have photos up for most of our favorite parks. Anyone who has any doggie recipes for doggie biscotti or cookies and such - please upload those to the Yahoo Groups database for recipes. Holiday and other favorite recipes are also welcome. Thanks!

Click thumbnails below to view Hike & Swim Photos for t-shirts, mugs and more!!!

 

 

Shiloh Springs and Big Springs Nature Trails

A Secret Oasis Up for Sale...!

 

 

Our favorite and most precious wilderness area is up for sale! Because much of the Big Springs area lies on private land along side a major highway, the city has zoned it commercial and for sale signs are popping up all along the highway. The Dallas Central Appraisal District maps show that the very best of this acreage belongs to major Dallas developers who are bound to destroy this area strip it of it's trees.

Shiloh Springs and Big Springs Nature Trails are located in the area formerly known as Big Springs on Big Springs Rd. renamed and redirected after the construction of the George Bush toll road/Highway 190. The road has been renamed and redirected since then.

Shiloh Springs is the park area that adjoins Spring Creek as it cuts a path southeast while the trail area is called Big Springs. The land is made up of Austin Chalk and springs that contribute to Spring Creek's steady volume of ice cold water.  The small park area features a paved jogging trail and a pond with pier along side the creek. 

The biggest secret is the maze of unmarked pioneer trails that are hidden beyond the tree line. As a warning, this forest is mostly confined to vacant, commercially held private property so to venture within is considered trespassing. At the most, two residences are located on the perimeter about a mile from the park close to Hwy. 190.  The trails are quiet and mostly traveled by mountain bikers and people walking their dogs. The trails immediately inside the tree line along a spring tributary are the ones primarily used since this is the border line of the park's public property. While people do occasionally venture further into this wilderness, it is not advised. Children specifically should not go here because this primitive area naturally is home to many wild creatures such as snakes and coyotes. There are also several abandoned wells built by the original pioneer owners of this land that can be dangerous if not deadly were a child to fall in.

The Big Springs Trails meander through the wilderness along the creek and then into the evergreen forest. The forest is comprised of mostly Mountain Cedar, which is a variety of Juniper. They resemble 20-foot tall Christmas Trees and blanket most of this land. Junipers require lots of water so they do well in this land of springs.

This 500-plus acres are the most intriguing and unique in all of D-FW. Our biggest fear is that soon this area will be plowed under and leveled since there are a couple for sale signs posted near the highway.

On the trail next to the creek you can view the creek's 30-foot limestone bluffs, expansive rocky beaches, a secret mountain bike gymnasium built by "elves", a paintball hideaway plus small crystal clear spring pools bubbling up from the ground. Wherever you see mossy green rocks in a creek bed, this is the tip off that springs are keeping the area moist as they bubble up from the aquifer below. The trails crisscross each other over the limerock and undulating ground.  This is the rolling terrain that once existed over all of Dallas, before developers got their hands and their bulldozers on it, making it a flat, cement prairie. The trails are too numerous to count  and many times you have to walk off trail to find your way around tributaries and other obstacles. In the fall, native Shumard Red Oaks dot the area with brilliant reds.  We are preserving this area in photos for that time when it is all gone.

 

Please check out the Dog Blog to see what our members are saying about this trail.

 

DOT PHOTO T-SHIRTS:

 Below are large photos that areDotPhoto.com Logo available at Dot Photo for T-Shirt Designs or for imprinting on mugs, mouse pads, etc. Text on the pictures can be changed by me. Just let me know in advance. All Hike & Swim members who have attended at least one meeting are eligible for discount pricing.

Quick Links for Other Parks

Sign up for Hike & Play Weekly Email Notification!

Shiloh Springs & Big Springs Nature Trails

Spring Creek Forest Preserve

Spring Creek Nature Trails @ Foxboro Park

Breckinridge Park Nature Trails

Shiloh Springs Nature Trails

Spring Creek Park Preserve

Holford Springs Nature Trails

Lookout Park near the Spring Creek Nature Trails

One Eleven Ranch Park

Hidden Springs

Duck Creek Park System

O'Banion Park on Duck Creek

Rowlett Creek Mountain Bike Trails

Rowlett Creek's Spring-Fed Pond

Rowlett Creek Mountain Bike and Nature Trails

RISD Environmental Center at Hidden Springs
 

Shapes for: Top - T-Shirt,  Deck of Cards. Bottom - Square or circle fits any item.

 

Janet and niece at Shiloh Springs.

DOT PHOTO GIFT ITEMS: All photos can have a custom saying across the bottom. Just call or send an email to me with your requested saying and I will upload it to DotPhoto!

To view the thumbnails of all available photos at DotPhoto, click here! If one is missing just email me and I will upload it.

 

 

Buffie the Golden and Rosie fetching

The photo below will be available shortly as soon as I add text to it.

Black Labs fetching and running!