The Dornwood Park Nature Trail is a wonderful place for the furry residents of Topeka to get some fresh air and exercise without having to stray too far from home. This 7-mile loop trail boasts both convenience and beautiful scenery for both two- and four-legged city-dwellers to enjoy. This is a very pawpular path for cyclists and runners, so your best bet to avoid crowds will be to visit during the early morning.
This isn't your typical run-of-the-mill city park trail; if you didn't know any better, you would think this path was carved out of a nature preserve. As you set off from the trailhead, you will pass the remains of an old stone dairy barn. From here, most of your trek will be through dense forest; there are some very steep inclines and rocky surfaces along your way, so be sure to watch your step! Keep an eye out for wildlife on this portion of the trail. Raccoons are common in Kansas and typically start to emerge around dusk. Since the trail is open late, there is a good chance you could see one of these masked critters!
Further down the trail, the landscape will transition from dense forests to grassy prairies. The path continues along the high banks of Deer Creek, which is an excellent place for the pack to grab a fresh drink and cool off from the journey. As you loop back around, you will find yourself at back at the main portion of the park. Here, you'll find everything you need to recharge from your adventures, like picnic tables, restrooms, benches, and water fountains. The trail is open 7 days a week from 6 am to 11 pm, so a daily walk here can fit in any dog's schedule! Tail-wagging good times are in store for your pack on the Dornwood Park Nature Trail -- just don't forget the leash!