On the Trail


Photo by Nina Koch

White Rock Lake Trail is one of the most scenic spots in Dallas to take a stroll, ride your bike, or take a heart-pounding run.


White Rock Lake boasts the crown jewel of Dallas’ trail network: a 9.3 mile trail that circles the lake and gives runners and walkers of every fitness level a scenic, enjoyable workout.

Don’t want to hit the trail alone? Join the Dallas Running Club, the White Rock Running Co-op or check out one of the many Meet Up groups that have regular walks or runs at the lake. And don’t forget the dozens of officially sponsored walks or runs held by charitable and fundraising organizations at the lake every year. Check out our Calendar  for a list of upcoming events.

If you’re training for a marathon and 9.3 miles isn’t long enough, the lake trail hooks up with the 7.5 mile White Rock Creek trail at the north end of the lake, making for a 24.3 mile round trip.

Safety Tips for the Trail:

  • Always be aware of your surroundings.
  • Pedestrians always stay to the right while on the trail, but on the left when on the road or subject to vehicle traffic.
  • Be predictable; don’t wander across trail suddenly.
  • Look carefully before entering or crossing trail.
  • Listen for audible signals from passing cyclists.
  • Check behind and ahead before moving left or crossing.
  • We discourage the use of headphones or earbuds while on the path. If you must use them, keep the volume low enough to hear what’s going on around you.

Bringing your best 4-legged friend? Dogs are welcome at White Rock Lake (check out our wonderful Dog Park). Please remember that Dallas law requires that all dogs be on a leash and within control of the owner at all times. Dog owners must also pick up waste after pets. Again, it’s the law.


White Rock Lake is quite simply biker heaven. The only downside is that its popularity often brings with it heavy traffic. So if you’re looking to avoid the crowds, come during the work day or very early on weekend mornings. Check our Events calendar before coming to make sure there’s not a major event being held at the lake that could impede your ride.

Most cyclists stay off the trail and ride in the road. The road loop is approximately 11 miles (as opposed to 9.3 miles on the foot path). Looking for a longer ride? Hook up to the White Rock Creek trail on the north side of the lake. That will take riders on a 7.5 mile trip up to Hillcrest and LBJ, where they can stop for a rest, maybe take in a kids’ soccer game, and head back home having done a 26 mile round trip.

The Greater Dallas Bicyclists Association holds regular rides at the lake (and other sites around Dallas), so you never have to ride alone.

Looking for a rental? Richardson Bike Mart, on Garland Road, offers a wide variety of rental bikes at reasonable rates.

Some important reminders:

  • Dallas has a helmet law for bicyclists, so remember to wear a helmet!
  • Bicyclists are required to follow all traffic laws.
  • If you’re riding at night, city law requires bicyclists to have a light on the front of the bike “that emits a white light visible from a distance of at least 500 feet in front of the bicycle; and (2) on the rear of the bicycle: (A) a red reflector that is: (i) of a type approved by the department; and (ii) visible when directly in front of lawful upper beams of motor vehicle headlamps from all distances from 50 to 300 feet to the rear of the bicycle; or (B) a lamp that emits a red light visible from a distance of 500 feet to the rear of the bicycle.”

Rules of the Road from Greater Dallas Bicyclists Association:

  • Obey all traffic laws.
  • Yield to pedestrians.
  • Give audible warning when passing (bell, horn, voice).
  • Slow down and ride single file when trail congested.
  • Use streets if you want to ride fast.
  • Pedestrians always stay to the right.
  • Be predictable; don’t wander across trail.
  • Yield when entering or crossing trail.
  • Listen for audible signals from passing cyclists.
  • Check behind before moving left to pass.