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The Redbud Trail takes users on a journey via the former BNSF railway corridor that slices right through downtown Wichita and its surrounds. The railroad was once the lifeblood of the growing city, and played a crucial role in the development of the region. It was used to export local agricultural commodities like hay and livestock, and brought in manufactured goods from across the country. The corridor has now been remade as a linear park, with a 10-foot wide trail for walking, jogging, biking, dog-walking and other non-motorized uses.
Beginning from the western end, the park passes by residential areas, churches and parks up to East 17th Street, close to Wichita State University. It then heads directly east until it crosses over into Butler County, where it begins to angle to the south slightly. The trail crosses over many roadways along the way (occurring every mile or so), all of which are at-grade and many of which feature no marked crosswalks or even curb-cuts. Thankfully, projects are underway to help improve the trail experience and install safer and more convenient crossings, but in the meantime, be sure to exercise extreme caution.
The trail is paved for the first 6 miles in Wichita, while much of the rest is surfaced with gravel or crushed limestone. Again, plans are in the works to pave more of the trail, but cyclists are advised not to ride the unpaved sections after recent rain to avoid damaging the path.
The Redbud Trail intersects with the K-96 Bicycle Path which in turn links to the McAdams Bike Path as well as other Wichita trails. The trail was extended eastward into Butler County thanks to local officials and trail groups - this section is also known as the Andover-Augusta Rail-Trail, and is paved between the county line (N 159th Street) and East 13th Street in Andover, with the remaining trail to the south featuring a crushed limestone surface. It currently ends at US-54/400 outside Augusta, although long-term plans call for extending the trail across the highway and into the town of Augusta proper.
There are 3 trailheads, marked by distinctive steel arches. The trailheads, known as pause points, feature amenities such as benches, signage, and parking.
Trailheads can be found at:
Additional parking can be found in the following locations (from west to east):
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