GEORGE COUNTY, Miss. (WKRG) – Students at George County High School now have a chance to mountain bike after class with a new trail on campus.

The Foxhead Trail was developed by the forestry class over the last year. While there was already a cross-country course in the 16th section timber land behind the school, staff wanted to expand the use of the woods.

“I started looking at what our students had to do and how often they spent time in our forests. And that just kind of led naturally to exploring ways that our students could engage with the forest around them, and the world around them,” said Morgan Dean, assistant director of career and technical education (CTE).

A grant from Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi helped to purchase 30 Trek bikes and helmets for the high school. Another group of students in the construction CTE program helped retrofit a barn behind the school to store the bikes and equipment.

Any GCHS student, with a permission slip, and staff can join the group to go on a weekly free ride around the mile-long loop.

“This is a big range of kids, a lot of different backgrounds here. So we’re kind of a diverse group, which is awesome,” Dean said. “As this grows, we hope to expand it into more outdoor opportunities: hiking, camping, things like that, just to give the kids more experiences.”

Trail development continues with the vision of a four-mile-long loop on the school property. 

There is also future potential for the GCHS “Box Turtle Mountain Bike Club” to become a sanctioned club by the National Interscholastic Cycling Association. An emerging league is formed in Mississippi with plans to start competitions between schools in 2024.

Other opportunities could include riding trails at the University of South Alabama and the De Soto National Forest trail in Saucier, Dean said.

While trail development is ongoing and the district explores liability and usage rules, the trail is not currently open to the public.