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Level: Intermediate
Length: 8 mi (12.9 km)
Surface: Singletrack
Configuration: Figure 8
Elevation: +238/ -178 ft
Total: 133 riders

Mountain Biking Madrone Trail

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#6 of 277 mountain bike trails in Texas
#352 in the world

The trailhead starts off with a small hill. Take a RIGHT at the intersection. At this intersection is also where you finish should you ride the trail correctly. You will encounter considerable amount of elevation change throughout the loop, technical climbs and descents, and drops- it's a great trail. The trail will cross the actual paved park road many times. You should not have trouble finding the continuing trail across the road- use your instincts. In some instances you can see the ribbons marking the trail. The second half of the trail has a lot of canopy. There is a section of the trail that will take you along a paved road with overgrown vegetation on both sides. Follow the ribbons. The trail should pick up on the left after a few hundred feet. There is usually a roadblock steering you to the trail. There are great views all along the trail. This is a great trail to ride and explore. You might be prone to flat tires. Take plenty of water.

First added by jphl on Jan 21, 2005. Last updated May 10, 2020. → add an update
Before you go
  • Drinking water: unknown
  • Lift service: unknown
  • Night riding: unknown
  • Pump track: unknown
  • Restrooms: unknown
  • Fat bike grooming: unknown
  • E-bikes allowed: unknown
  • Fee required: unknown
This trail information is user-generated. Help improve this information by suggesting a correction.
Getting there
In New Braunfels: From IH-35, go west on hwy 306 for about 20 minutes until you reach Canyon Lake. It's a straight shot. You will be in Canyon, the city. At this point, the lake should be on your left. Take a left on Canyon Rd to enter the actual park. There is an Exxon on the right at the Hancock Mini-Mart at the intersection where Canyon Rd is. You will recognize the road by the series of really tall telephone poles aligning the right side of the road toward the interior of the park. This road will take into the inner island where the trailhead will be. Drive into the park. There will be a parking area immediately to the right, once you pass the small beach on the left and the tall telephone poles. Note: If you reach a tollbooth, you've gone too far. The parking lot on the right should be the first thing you see. Once in the parking lot, you will notice the trailhead on the front right.
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Madrone Trail Trail map

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Trail conditions

Good (on Sep 30, 2018)
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Madrone Trail videos

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Madrone Trail, Canyon Lake Texas -…
Madrone today clip 46
canyon lake madrone trail
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Rider questions

Q: can i ride my trident trike on these trails
A: I wouldnt

Q: Can I take my dog on this trail

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  • inlinesean

    Just like everyone is saying. Fun trail but pretty technical on all the rocky sections. Needs better signage. Just simple markers would be great. There are a few (6-7) but the entrance needs better guidance/markers.

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  • keke14

    Thus far this is my favorite tail! Loved the log featute that they had there! It was my first big drop! Overall the trail definitely holds up to being intermediate, but if yor new feeling brave and wanting to challange yourself i 10 out of 10 recommend Madrone!

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  • Nikki Tangtiphongkul

    my fav, very good trail a lot up and down and good amount of good roll up and roll down. technical terrain good for someone who like rock garden. almost mini Georgetown lake. tip: use restroom conoco gas station before come into the park.

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  • Benjas

    November 5 Park Closed for season hunting!

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  • NBshredder

    Madrone is a fun ride; there's rock everywhere, there's some drops, a switchback and some pretty technical places.

    There's absolutely ZERO trail markings, but just use your instinct and watch the flow of the trail and you will be okay!

    If the US Army Corps of Engineers would get out there and build trail signs and do a little tree trimming this place would be awesome.

    Bring water - the sun out here by the lake will beat you to death! Also, wear padded underpants or you'll be regretting it the next day :D

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  • Mrsgrabert

    Rocky terrain but fun. Maze style trails can lead to water for a quick cool off. Bring GPS and hit bathroom at gas station before hand. '

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  • Craft

    Trail is great! Markings aren't great but an easy one to learn. Be careful with recommendations on jumping in the lake to cool off - if you want to venture off the trail, you MUST have a park pass. The beauty of this place is that it's in a park, but they allow hikers/cyclists access to the trail without paying a fee. But if you want to go to campsites, lake, off the trail...you have to pay the fee. Please follow the rules so we don't lose our access! http://www.swf-wc.usace.army.mil/canyon/Recreation/Trails/Madrone.asp

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  • F5Rider

    This trail has great potential if only it had some serious trail work done on it. There isn't much in the way of climbs or descents at all, but it has a lot of fun twists and turns, some moderate short ups and downs, and enough obstacles to keep a good rider interested. Never do you get much cardio or speed due to the very rough trail conditions. Tons of rocks and roots everywhere that only serve to beat you to death over 8 miles of trail. The trees do provide some good cover from the sun that will be great later in the season when it's hot. The signage needs help, and the shortcuts need to be blocked. Too many shortcuts tend to make following the correct path difficult and it also just tracks up the natural scenery unecessarily. Recommend a full suspension bike, but even that will only help the rough ride so much. The campground is still closed, but it's also in desperate need of repair. Looks abandoned back to nature, overgrown, and in disrepair. Too bad because this would be a great place to camp and ride if the whole park were well maintained.

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  • seadart

    Pretty rad trail, 7 of the fun factor. Trail is a great combo of fast single trail, rocky climbs with technical sections. Not much in the way of big puffy climbs. Boney rocky tire popping sections, nice little pump trail with a sweet little plank drop. 1hr from central Austin. Nice change of scenery.

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  • Tate2o

    Nice solid trail. This trail has it all, Smooth single track section, short rocky descends with some fun drops, smooth climbs with your technical rocky climbs, there are also some technical flat sections. This trail is a smoker but a lot of fun if you are an experienced rider. This trail is not hard tail beginner friendly. I have seen a lot of people take hardballs in and not make it out due to getting flat tires. Tubeless is best to ride on this tail, with the rocky sections you will be extremely prone to pinch flats. If you take tubed tires i recommend running at least 40psi. It will make for a rougher ride but less likely having to walk back to the car. The shaded areas on the trail are nice for those hot days. If you are looking for a nice technical trail and a good workout this trail is the trail for you!

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  • John Guerrero

    Great trail for Intermediate riders, some really nice singletrack and technical aspects to the ride. Love the decent sections along with the tight squeezes that are spread out here and there. Rock garden's make climbing challenging and fun, they also make going downhill quite challenging but at the end, rewarding.

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  • timbauer09

    Just a heads up the trail is closed till December 20, 2015 at 3 PM for wounded warriors hunting

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  • [email protected]

    The road that gives you access to the trail is currently underwater! The trail is not currently accessible.

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  • Audrey Rodriguez

    This trail is so fun. Once you figure out how to navigate the trail has good flow. The two times we went, never ran into anyone on the trail, but of course people were there because cars were at the trail head.Yes it has lots of rocks, but very doable for an intermediate. the 1st section-probably the most technical, we tend to get lost in that part b/c we there are some service roAds that intersect it and there is lots of white rock, makes it hard to determine what is trail and not trail. We then just skip over the roAd which is not hard to find b/c you can hear the cars nearby, to the second part (on left). You will cross the road about three or four more times to the (right) making your way back in loop fashion back to the trail head. The trail is not well marked in the first part, but next sections are somewhat better marked. I have not had any tire flats. There are cactus right next to the trail in places, so maybe some people are going a little wide and off trail into the cactus. I took a nasty wipe out taking a corner on one of the dirt portions, I got cocky having done so well on ALL the rocks, I was going too fast and my rear tire slid on some fallen leaves as I was taking a corner. Can't wait til knee sprain is better to go back. It is not particularly pretty scenery, I read elsewhere that you have to stay on the trail, in order to ride the 'paved roads' in the marina you have to pay entry fee-so stay on trail. The trail does have air of neglect as they do not have money to maintain. No restrooms, areas over grown. We were on the trail for almost two hours, take plenty of water if it is hot out. Toward end we were panting and finding the short climbs tiring.

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  • NeverSawBigfoot

    Nice trail, very technical. I ride a 29er singlespeed hardtail and my bike took the rocks just fine. Several spots where you go down rock steps, very fun. It's slow-going, so don't let the 8.5 mile description fool you- allow plenty of time, at the very least two hours, the more the better.

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  • et69

    This is a 8 mile fun and technical singletrack trail. It is fairly well marked, but not to well maintained. The trail has about 40% nice fast singletrack, and about 60% rocky and technical singletrack with some short climbs and descends. This is NOT a beginners level trail, and full suspension bikes are recommended.

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  • Landcuda

    great trail, bring plenty of water during hot months

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  • jkeith

    Had been wanting to try this trail for a while now that I moved closer to it. All the previous reviews are pretty much spot on. This was one of the funnest trails I have been on in a while. The scenery is awesome, there are a lot of smooth areas and a lot of rocky areas but nothing too loose. The trail is easy to follow, there are a couple of places that were a little confusing but if you look around you can find the ribbons or trail entrance from the roads pretty quickly. I did puncture a tire about 1.5 miles in, but it sealed up quickly and the rest of the ride was trouble free. It can be very technical in some spots and has a few drop offs, but there was nothing that scared me or my son (who is a beginner) and a few of the really technical places had a bypass around them, my son did walk a couple of small sections. I would recommend this trail to anyone, if your a beginner just pay attention keep your head about you.

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  • awshuckss

    Awesome trail.

    Well maintained, and well marked. If you ever feel lost look for the ribbons tied to the trees. The trail runs into roads so be aware of that and just look for the continuation of the trails across the roads. There are mile markers at each mile. When we finished we had done a little over 8 miles. This trail is very rocky and technical, but in all the right places. It was a blast.

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  • saahirahmad

    So I had seen this trail a year ago and I didn't have a bike then, but I had made up my mind that when I buy a bike I'll definitely ride this trail. I bought a bike recently, so it was time for me to ride this trail. I drove down from Austin to camp at canyon lake and ride the trail. I got to the trail and was really excited to ride. I had not gone too far maybe about 2 miles when I got a flat and I had to carry my bike on foot all the way back, but this trail is really good. You'll find all kinds of obstacles, up hills, downhills, a lot of rocks, jumps and a lot of cool stuff. A few things to keep in mind are that make sure you bring a lot of water. This trail has a nasty image of causing flat tyres, so come prepared for that
    I'll definitely come back again to this trail soon, but I'll be prepared for flat tyres this time

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