Purgatory Trail Run Volunteers Needed

We’re not asking you to run, just stand around and point. Core Running is hosting a trail run with proceeds benefiting the SMGA on Saturday morning, February 23. Volunteers are needed at trail junctions to make sure participants know which way to go, to help at the start/finish line, and also at aid/water stops. The race starts at 8am but volunteers will need to be there a bit earlier. At least 20 volunteers are needed. If you are interested, please contact Dave Moody with Core Running directly at david@corerunningcompany.com for details and to sign up. This is a great way to support SMGA without breaking a sweat!

Spring Events Calendar

SMGA and friends lead public hikes throughout the Spring in the natural areas. Check the website for trailhead directions, maps and the LOOP newsletter for late news.

Birding Hikes, first Saturday every month, contact stephen@birdsiview.org
Early morning hikes led by Stephen Ramirez, the hikes typically last 1.5 to 2 hours on a discovery journey that has included raptors, songbirds, sparrows of all kinds and even a turkey vulture or two.

Texas Outdoor Woman Network (TOWN) hikes Monday mornings through April, contact Judy 512.558.1032 or Donna 512.395.5374. Fast-paced hikes for healthy exercise in a different natural area each week.

2/24 Kid friendly hike Spring Lake at 2 p.m. -- Maggie Hutchins will lead a kids hike, exploring the natural areas from a kid's eye view. We will meet in the Meadows Center parking lot.

3/17 Bug Discovery at Prospect Park 9 a.m. -- Val Bugh can find and explain the many different insects found on wildflowers, trees and traversing the ground in one of the original natural areas. Approximately 2 hours -- this is a favorite for kids of all ages.

3/22 World Water Day

3/23 Prospect Park and Bobcat Build -- Remove invasives and plant natives, improve the trails. More details to come on this community service project sponsored by Texas State University.

4/7 Photo walk Ringtail Ridge 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. -- The wildflowers and all that bugs them should be out in full-force. Members of the Hill Country Photographers Club will lead the walk that gives you an opportunity to ask questions and hone those skills.

4/21 Nordic Hike to the top of Spring Lake mountain and back 2 p.m. -- meet in the parking lot of the Meadows Center and bring your poles. Barbara Piersol and Marilyn Brister will lead a healthy hike that works the upper body in addition to the legs. Approximately 1 to 1.5 hours.

4/22 Earth Day

4/26 National Arbor Day

5/6-12 National Wildflower Week

5/18 Spring Lake Natural Area -- hike with Todd Derkacz, president of the San Marcos Greenbelt Alliance. Learn about endangered species and another reason we have the natural areas we enjoy. Start time and location to be posted later.

Vision San Marcos Update: Map, Goals, Objectives

The Vision San Marcos process continues, and the City has posted the latest version of the vision map and goals and objectives. Provide feedback to dream@sanmarcostx.gov.

Invasive removal is task of new volunteer group

Mike and Kennth examine a seed pod.
A baker's dozen volunteers arrived at Ringtail Ridge natural area Sunday afternoon, Feb. 10th and when they left there were fewer cockle burs and bastard cabbage plants on the ground.  Led by Master Naturalists, Donna Browning and Leah Laszewski, the volunteers filled numerous bags of the invasive plants in just two hours of work.  The volunteers were a mix of master naturalists, SMGA trail crew members and a pair of Texas State students interested in stewardship of our natural areas.
Many of these bags were
filled by the volunteers.

 In addition to removing the invasive plants, Texas native grass seeds were sown in hopes that the drought would be kind.  Goldenrod was also left in place to attract pollinators to the 45 acre natural area. 

Library display posts spring/summer hikes

Charles O'Neil, stewardship committee chair, stands next to the San Marcos library display cases.  Working in partnership with the library, San Marcos Greenbelt Alliance posts the schedule of hikes for the Spring and early Summer.  Books from the library are also show-cased to encourage families to read and discover their natural areas in the San Marcos city limits.