Park #2 on our quest to visit all 93 State Parks of Texas was Pedernales Falls State Park.
Pedernales Falls State Park is in Johnson City, TX about 35 minutes outside of Austin.
Park 2/93 February 9, 2013
Pedernales Falls State Park is one of my favorite parks. I’ve visiting many times and could write for hours about the Wolf Mountain Trail and about the falls themselves. This visit only included a short hike around the falls where we spent an hour exploring the boulders that are normally hidden by water during the wet seasons. We stopped by the headquarters and got our lapel pins, maps, and well-wishes from the park rangers. From the headquarters we headed down the winding, hilly road to the falls. You can park at the end of the road at the large parking lot/restroom area. From there we headed down the gravel-paved path to the falls. This is about a quarter of a mile path that is really easy to make for most people. From there you can take pictures from the multiple overlooks. If you’re feeling more adventurous take either path down to the falls from the main overlook. We took the path (left from looking out over the falls) and continued across the falls. It was relatively dry when we were there so we were able to walk straight across the falls without having to get wet at all. If you have the time (and there’s no chance of rain) head further North and explore some of the beautiful rockscapes formed by the river. There’s a great formation of rocks which is pretty difficult for me to describe so I’ll let the picture below do the talking.
There’s a “floating” boulder inside of the “eye” in that formation. The light in that picture wasn’t great.
We had another state park to visit that day so we headed back to the car after getting some pictures of that formation.
Park #1 on our quest to visit all 93 State Parks of Texas was McKinney Falls State Park.
McKinney Falls State Park is in Austin, TX.
Park 1/93 – January 26, 2013
Map of Park
Map of Trails
We started at the Park Headquarters which is just off of McKinney Falls Pkwy. We picked up our lapel pin and headed to the trail. We decided to do the Homestead Trail. It was not marked well at all and instead of a 3 mile quick hike we ended up walking over 7 miles. It was good exercise, but overall a disappointing way to spend out time at the park. The trail forked a lot with no marker to tell you which way is the trail and which is a maintenance drive or private property entrance. We seemed to always choose the wrong path at the forks. The falls were ok and I’m sure they will be prettier in the Spring (we visiting January 26, 2013). Watch out for the iron rebar sticking out of the rocks at the falls. They stick out of the slippery rocks by the falls/trail. While an oasis in the city, it’s not exactly the best park the state has to offer.
At some point all of us ask ourselves, “What do you want to do before you die?”
When asked this question recently I answered without pause.
“I want to visit all of the State Parks of Texas.”
At first, it seemed like a daunting, out-of-reach goal. Well, my friends and I are 8 parks into this epic adventure and I can’t wait to see the remaining 85 parks. I am going to keep track of our trips on my blog. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to contact me.
A must-have for anyone attempting this amazing bucket list item is a Texas State Parks Pass. It’s a ridiculously cheap annual pass and will save your group a lot of money.
Things I’ve learned/added in the past week:
I added some categories for my posts. I’m still trying to figure out how to use categories as pages like my friend’s blog. Hopefully she can show me next week.
I added a slideshow to my recent post on Homer Bailey’s No-hitter. That could be a useful feature for my next post about a hike.
New cover photo:
I took this picture on my recent hike at Doeskin. It was much better quality than the other picture I was using.
Saturday September 22, 2012
I went on a hike at Doeskin Ranch on Saturday. This hiking area is part of the Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge. The entrance to Doeskin Ranch is located at Mountain Creek Road and FM 1174 Northwest of Austin.
There’s just over 5 miles of trails at Doeskin. I covered the entire distance in just over two hours. I stopped a few times to take pictures, rest, and of course enjoy the amazing views.
Check out the Friends of Balcones site for more info.