I'm down in New Orleans for the weekend, visiting my friend Jocelyn and enjoying some of the exciting parade season. Since our beautiful dirt trails are all snowed in up in New Hampshire I absolutely had to take the chance to hit some trails while I was down here. A quick search of local trails turned up the Bonnet Carre Spillway trails. This is a ~5mi loop of MTB trails taken care of by NOMAMBO (The New Orleans Metro Area Mountain Bike Organization). Just 30 minutes from the city, this is a sweet gem that is home to the Spillway Classic Trail Run hosted by the New Orleans Track Club.
The trail starts out from a boat launch and recreation area with ample parking. There's no map at the trail head, just a board with warnings and trail rules, but there's no reason to fret since the trail is an easy to follow out and back loop right along the spillway. When I'm running on MTB trails I prefer to run counter to the regular flow so I can see the bikers coming down the trail. This might tick off the bikers, but it ends up being safer for everyone
These are some absolutely beautiful trails. Nice and flowy with no elevation gain other than slight mounds, short steps, and some bike bridges. The trails are well broken in and it looks like NOMAMBO takes good care of them, only one instance where the trail was blocked by branches. The trail is clear single track lined with thin trees and attractive undergrowth, at times making for a beautiful green carpet spread along the trail.
After taking it slow this winter in NH, just enjoying time on the trail, running this trail was a blast. The colors, the flat trail, the warmth and humidity, it was exactly what I needed. Though there was a light rain it only made for some fun mud puddle stomping. All together this was an awesome little set of trials. There must be more gems like this hidden around these parts. I'll have to do some more exploring!