Friday, December 21, 2007

Brazos Bend State Park

Where: Brazos Bend State Park, Texas
Trail: Red Buckeye and White Oak Trails
Difficulty: Easy
Distance: 1.5 mile loop and 1.8 mile loop
Adventure Rating: 1 Star
Pets: Allowed on leash

Being that it was December, the park was brown and not very scenic. Still, it was a nice hike and beautiful weather to enjoy it.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Sheldon Lake State Park

Where: Sheldon Lake State Park, Texas 
Trail: Pond Loop, Bent Pine, Swamp Rabbit, Kinglet, Armadillo Trails
Difficulty: Easy
Distance:1.5 miles
Adventure Rating: 1 Star
Pets: Allowed on leash

Since there were few trails, we hiked them all. The Pond Loop trail allows you to observe each pond--which we did after seeing the beware of alligators sign. We finally saw an alligator at the second to last pond. It was laying in a tree, which I still find weird. Other than the alligator, the park wasn't all that exciting. Perhaps the canoe trails would've been more interesting.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Lake Mineral Wells State Park

Where: Lake Mineral Wells State Park, Texas
Trail: Primitive Campground Access Trail
Difficulty: Moderate (first 1/2 mile has steep grades)
Distance: 2.5 miles, one way
Adventure Rating: 2 Stars
Pets: Allowed on leash

Lake Mineral Wells is just west of Dallas/Ft Worth. The park has one interesting hiking trail. The other trails are multipurpose. It was on this trip that I learned a valuable hiking lesson. If a trail allows horses, it's probably not going to be that interesting. We hiked a bit on one of the multipurpose trails before switching over to the primitive trail.


The second thing I learned was that it's a good idea to bring along a change of clothes so that you don't have to ride home (4.5 hours back to Houston) in hot, sweaty clothes. And they were hot and sweaty since the temperature reached into the 80s that day. In the sun, that was pretty hot. Which leads to the third thing I learned, and that is 80 degrees is a little too hot for hiking for Toby (my dog).

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Where: Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, Texas
Trail: Summit Trail?
Difficulty: Moderate
Distance: 1/2 mile, one way
Adventure Rating: 2 Stars
Pets: Allowed on leash

The trail markers weren't easy to follow, so I'm not 100% sure that we stayed on a trail or how much distance we covered exactly. The enchanted rock is a huge dome rock and you can just climb all over it, which is what we did.

Big Bend National Park

Where: Big Bend National Park, Texas
Trail: Window Trail
Difficulty: Moderate to Strenuous
Distance: 5.6 mile round trip
Adventure Rating: 4 Stars
Pets: Not allowed on trails

Big Bend National Park was my first real hiking trip. Go big or go home, right? The park is over 800,000 acres, so there was no way we could see all of it. We chose the Window Trail because it seemed to be the most scenic. The hike out is downhill and much easier than the hike back, which was all uphill. The elevation change on this hike is 980 feet, which you will notice when you're on your way back. We started our hike in the morning because we knew the afternoon would be too hot. But it's Texas, so even in the morning, it was pretty warm out.