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The rushing water, thick vegetation, green hills on all sides and ominous clouds above the ridgeline gave the Spring Valley Creek trail a tropical feel Sunday — a great getaway from the city.
The single-track trail is a mild hike, with less than 500 feet of climbing, and a great option for dogs (but they must be on-leash). An out-and-back route covers about 6.4 miles from the public parking for the Avimor development’s trail system.
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From the parking lot, veer to the right to find the trailhead for Twisted Spring (9A). After three-quarters of a mile, you’ll turn right on Spring Valley Creek. The creek often is just a few steps away and in a couple of spots you’ll need to step carefully to avoid getting your feet wet.
For bikers, the trail is fairly easy with a few difficult sections that can be walked across if necessary.
“I would classify it as an easy blue trail with some rocky sections that may feel black for beginning riders,” said Marc Grubert, the volunteer trails coordinator at Avimor. “Overall, an easy trail with some technical sections. ... For hikers, I would call it pure gold and not overly technical.”
The trail ends at Cartwright Road — a rough, dirt road. You can go south on Cartwright to explore the remnants of the town of Toll Road and catch Burnt Car (10) for a quarter-mile climb to a city view.
For more on the Avimor trail system, visit avimor.com.
▪ Stats: The end of the Spring Valley Creek trail is 3.2 miles from the trailhead parking lot. The elevation increase is 477 feet.
▪ Getting there: Take Highway 55 north of Shadow Valley Golf Course. Turn right on Avimor and left on McLeod. The trailhead parking lot is adjacent to the tennis and basketball courts.