San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

Interactive Map | Following repairs to damage from last year’s historic floods, Lower Purgatory Creek Natural Area [1] will reopen to the public on Saturday, March 5. Explore the city’s parks and trails systems here. 


Trails in Lower Purgatory Creek Natural Area will reopen Saturday, March 5 but work continues as crews repair the extensive damage caused by last year’s historic flooding.

“Though the park is open, certain areas are cordoned off and closed to the public until city crews and volunteers can finish repairing the trails. The closed areas suffered major damage in the flood and present many hazards,” said parks operations manager Bert Stratemann.

Visitors can still expect rough conditions on the open trails and caution should be exercised in all open areas. Open trails can be accessed via the entrance located at 2102 Hunter Road.

The San Marcos Greenbelt Alliance is working in the closed areas and will be re-routing some trails to bypass the most heavily damaged areas.

City officials also want to remind visitors to stay off of any flood control dams, as they are not part of the city’s parks system and are off-limits to the public. Visitors are advised to stay on marked trails to avoid hazards and off-limits areas.

As an alternative to Purgatory Creek natural areas, visitors can use Spring Lake Natural Area, located at 685 Lime Kiln Road, or Ringtail Ridge Natural Area, located at 1814 Old Ranch Road 12. These two properties total 298 acres.

City parkland along the San Marcos River at Thompson’s Islands are still closed for flood damage repairs. The city’s other parks and natural areas are open although some still have repair work needed or underway.

COVER: A sunset at Lower Purgatory Creek Natural Area in February 2014. SAN MARCOS MERCURY FILE PHOTO

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