We frequently walk (and bike) the old, retired railroad grade to the dam. All the ties and rails were removed long ago, so it's really just a wide, relatively flat dirt road (should I cross-post this to that thread?).
The grade starts 1/3 of a mile from our house and then goes 5 1/2 miles to the dam. It's been a great source of fun for us over the years: walks, hikes, bike rides, (one) horseback ride, and running. All the way to the dam, or just out a mile and back. Lots of room to explore down from the grade to the ditch too (locals don't call it a canal, we call it the ditch; and the trestles are flumes).
Tricia was just out there biking with a friend yesterday.
There's a few ferrel apple trees about 3/4 of a mile out. Right near the two acre blackberry patch (we go there for desert on some summer evenings). Wild roses are seen - in season - right on the side of the road. And, if you know just where and when, there's a patch of wild strawberries about halfway between the grade and the ditch.
Stop by some time Dingus and do the walk with us. Late summer is probably best.
Sasha told me about the railroad grade after we saw some bikers on it.
We came in from the other side. Our approach involved considerably less walking and way more rattling, hah.
Didn't realize you lived so close to that. Pretty cool. We ended up spending more time in there than we thought and had to skedaddle once we got back to pavement. Next time, I'll ping you first, but we were sorta rushed by then.