Apex Nature Park and Seymour Athletic Fields, a new park complex in Apex, opened back in March.
The 160-acre park at the corner of Apex Barbecue and Evans roads offers your typical park amenities - about three miles of walking and jogging trails; two shelters with restrooms; a playground; youth and adult lighted tennis courts; sand volleyball courts; and basketball courts. There's also an outdoor amphitheater with room for about 400 people, an 18 hole disc golf course and a two-acre dog park.
Two parking areas serve the park - one near the playground and ball fields and, just up the road, for the amphitheater.
I spent the morning on the playground with my younger daughter a few weeks ago. The playground is what we'll focus on here.
I'd planned on checking out a couple of playgrounds that morning, but we ended up staying here for a couple of hours instead. This isn't a huge playground, but the play pieces offer some fun twists on the usual monkey bars, balance beams and other standard playground fare.
The play piece for older kids - ages 5 to 12 - has a tree house theme. The two-story structure includes two pretend tree trunks that kids can play inside. Kids can hide inside one. The other tree trunk has a ladder that kids can climb up to access the slides. A rope bridge connects the two trunks. It sits high off the crowd and my four-year-old wasn't crazy about it, but a three-year-old boy scrambled across it with no problem.
There are some other interesting pieces here, including several rock climbing walls. Kids can climb from one of those rock climbing walls by pulling themselves along a metal bar that's pretty high off the ground to the second floor of one of the tree trunks. Again, this was tricky for my four-year-old, but not at all for that brave three-year-old boy who was crossing it like some kind of superhero.
That rope bridge and bar, however, are definitely something parents of young kids will want to keep an eye on when they visit.
Another play piece for younger kids - ages 2 to 5 - offers some stepping stones and more metal bars that kids can walk across kind of like a balance beam. I liked the added touch of the tree stump, which kids can use to climb up to access the top of the slide, here. It is a nature park, after all.
There are no swings, but there is piece that kids can spin around in.
A paved trail sits along one side of the playground. And, mercifully, there is a picnic shelter with bathrooms right next to it. A Go Ask Mom reader shared on our Facebook page that the disc golf course meanders through the woods in a quiet part of the park. Some of the areas are hilly and the terrain is natural, which might make it tricky for a stroller.
She was there soon after the park opened when crews were still working on the park, but she did share that the course was pretty muddy when she visited. The course is free, just bring your own Frisbees, she shared.
Watch the video for a look at the playground. Apex Nature Park is at 2600 Evans Rd., Apex.