Purgatory Creek is one of those places that is great to ride if you are passing through, but probably won't make a worthwhile destination if you were heading a long distance just to ride it. Heading down is pretty straightforward as the trail is less than a mile from I-35 and if you want to do a couple of laps, there is a lot of fun to be had.
Some sections are smooth single track, but there is a lot of rocky trail along with some rocky climbs and descents; think of it as cheesegrater with some elevation. However, elevation is not the reason to ride the trails. Part of what makes them fast is the lack of elevation. We had less than 500 feet of climbing in the 7 miles that we did. I could easily see this as the kind of place where you will do multiple laps.
Location: San Marcos, TX
Directions: Take I-35 south and get off on Route 12 that takes you through the middle of town. You'll head less than a mile west on 12 and you'll hit Hunter. Take a left on Hunter and the parking lot is right past the intersection.
Technical Level: Low to medium
Length: About 7 miles
Trails: A wide variety of trails, some smooth, some rocky. Reminds me of the greenbelt in a few areas and like MacAllister park in others.
Trail Map: City trail map
Shade: Very shady, it was actually hard to take pictures because of the tree cover
GPS Map: GPS map
Post-ride Beer: Zelicks is right up the road. We rode up there to get a beer, and unfortunately they didn't open until 3
Links: City web site