Monday, May 31, 2021

Sykes Park

At the end of the last post, I think I said that my knee feels fine. Turned out no. It did feel fine at the time I wrote that, but started feeling more fragile the next day, and sore after that. I'd not only twisted it, but also bruised it in like 4 different places. One bruise was from the rear skewer whacking it over and over in the same place during all that hike-a-bike, but the others... no idea. But, it was bruised all over. I don't really know what the opearative injury was - the twist, or the whacking, but whatever it was, my knee was giving me trouble all week, and I felt like letting it heal.

This past weekend, I took a road trip up to Oak Ridge to pick up an old G4 Macintosh, and took care of some stuff around the house. It's Memorial Day today though, so as I had the day off, I figured I ought to see how the old knee is doing with some easy, short miles.

I've been wanting to check out Sykes Park in East Point for a while, but it's only got like 3 miles of trail, total, so I've never made the effort. It seemed ideal today though.

Siri nav'ed me to the west entrance, which was closed, and the sign for the park itself also indicated that the park was closed.

Sykes Park Sign

Hmm... Turns out it was all misinformation. The east entrance was open, and there were cars in the lot.

Sykes Park Lot

The park didn't look like it had gotten much recent use though. Everything was open...

Sykes Park Pavillions 
	Sykes Park Playground

...but everything had that "I haven't been used or maintained in a while" loop to it. The bathrooms were locked.


I spun around the various park roads. There's this one main circle that leads away from the playground and tennis courts, and it looked like it had been closed for a loooong time. There were like 5 pavillions back there, which had at least 2 seasons of leaves on them.

Abandoned Pavillions at Sykes Park

I did find a trail map though, as well as some carsonite signs.

Sykes Park Trail Map

And the trail itself was in decent shape. It looked like it had been built, ridden a bit, then not ridden much after that. Like it had never REALLY been worn in. It's kind of a shame to because it's a great trail. Well built, fast, long lines of sight...

Sykes Park Shred

...with fun obstacles, and interesting stuff to see.

Cool Rocks at Sykes Park

There were 3 main loops - a green (beginner) loop with some blue (intermediate) spurs off of it, a blue (intermediate) outer loop, and what looks like a flow-trail in-progress. It looked like whoever was building just had to stop when COVID hit, and never really got cranked up again. Eg. this side trail with all kinds of rock laid down, that was never finished.

Future Rock Garden

The Moontower trail was another example...

Moontower Sign

Its sign was kicked off to one side, and there are safety barricades up. Looks like a work-in-progress, on hold, indefinitely.

It took me a minute to figure out what "moontower" meant. I think it refers to the water tower nearby.

The Moontower

Heh. Moontower.

There's a pump track too, and it's rideable, but the grass around it is a bit overgrown.

I spun two laps of everything, in both directions. I was surprised to see another rider hitting the trail as I passed the lot. Maybe it does get some local use. Later on I passed him as he crossed the road, hopped the curb awkwardly, cased it, and then proceeded to yell "shit! shit! shit! shit!" while pounding his seat. I couldn't tell what was going on, and I didn't want to know.

I think I may also have interrupted a couple's romantic afternoon at one of the old pavillions. Sorry about that.

At any rate, I had an unexpectedly good time. The knee held up, but still felt fragile after, just not any worse. IDK, I'll give it a few more days.

If you're in the area, ride Sykes, it's worth your time.

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