Explore the Texas Hill Country in Colorado Bend State Park

From prickly pear desolate tract to verdant gorges, this hike exhibits off the variety of the Lone Star Utter.

The day previous to this, I navigated cactus-dotted scrubland caked in orange dirt. As of late, I’m negotiating a slick gorge decorated in inexperienced hanging gardens. It looks like two varied journeys, and, in a sense, it is: I threaded collectively a dozen trails to float the desolate tract and upland savannah correct into a damp karst canyon that hides a 65-foot-true waterfall. In doing so, I’ve created a multiday legend that touches every highlight on this dayhike-oriented park. That’s the approach it may perhaps probably perhaps mute be: The longer you locate, the larger you survey.

Turn-by-turn from the Cedar Chopper Loop trailhead

Like most backpacking journeys in Hill Nation, this one requires creativity: Originate up in the midst of the resolve eight (hotfoot away yourself a cache to your car for day two), and hyperlink the Lemons Ridge Cross, Crammed with life Loop, and Windmill Trails 4.4 miles by a desertscape to the Windmill Backpack Camping Save .

Next day, string collectively the Windmill, Crammed with life Loop, Gorman-Windmill Connection, and Gorman Falls Trails Three.4 miles to a tributary of the Colorado River.

Project upstream on the 1-mile, out-and-wait on Gorman Spring Path to locate the namesake bubbler (scan for Texas’s disclose fish, the Guadalupe bass).

Wait on at the Colorado River, to find Extinct Gorman Avenue (grime doubletrack) south to the Cedar Chopper Loop parking zone and your cache at mile 10.5.

Tack on leg two: Skedaddle Three.5 miles east by karst Dogleg Canyon (trailside sinkholes and enable-most productive caves right here) and up the shady River Path to the River Backpack Camping Save direction, which wends upstream to campsites by Texas’s Colorado River.

Wait on on the main path, thread collectively the River and Lemons Ridge Cross Trails 4.2 miles to conclude the circuit where you started at the Cedar Chopper Loop parking dwelling.

Campsite 1: Windmill Backpack Camping Save (mile 4.4)

Pitch your tent in the prairie, where mountain cedars present some shade. Nonetheless this mute desolate tract set feels straight-up Texas, complete with prickly pear cactuses and slow night coyote yips. Discover: BYO water.

Campsite 2: River Backpack Camping Save (mile 14.4)

Camp on a flat space trimmed with Queen Anne’s lace and cattails. Uncomplicated access to the indolent Colorado River makes water duty a inch—and approach you’ll rating thirsty company, like armadillos.

DO IT Trailhead 31.041102, -ninety eight.485403; 30 miles west of Lampasas on CR 446

Season October to Can also Enable None, nonetheless it be distinguished to notify campsites on-line for $10 apiece. Custom blueprint($15) 

Originally posted 2018-02-11 22:25:28.

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