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Friday, September 5, 2014

Hiking Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

The “Grand Canyon of Texas” is a myriad of recreational opportunities,rich history and colourful geology.The Canyon is 120 miles long and 800 feet deep,and the second largest canyon in the USA.

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

 

Palo Duro has a rich history ,Native American tribes in the area included Kiowa,Comanche and Cheyenne were defeated by  Col. Mackenzie in 1874 and were forced to leave the place.

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

We stood in the summer warm winds facing the outstanding vistas,rocks and colourful formation trying to imagine the lives of the first settlers in this remote wild area hoping it will be kept as it is without “modernizing” it any more, it has already a paved road,electrical hook ups and an amphitheater …..

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

We love all forms of wild nature , it brings us closer to creation and find it very easy to make friends that are nature lovers,and we will continue hiking as long as our knees and hearts will allow us to do so.

Every turn every step we took in the Canyon reviled a new panorama and it was tough to chose the right shots especially when Shula would always guide me to another picture angle…so here are some selected pictures .

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TX

Click on any picture to enlarge.

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

All the  pictures above can be taken by driving a car in the canyon and some times just few feet from the car,no need to hike and all this can be seen in just 2 hours….

On the next day and after this “orientation” drive through Palo Duro we decided to take the time to hike and see what is beyond the driven path but before doing that we “needed” an ice cream soda in the local ice cream parlour in Canyon TX,an old nice establishment with a nostalgic atmosphere.

Canyon TX

On the following day at 0730 we woke to see this beautiful sunrise over our camp , a good sign for the rest of the day.

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

got our hiking gear and headed to the Canyon ,  we chose  to hike the LIGHTHOUSE trail that is considered to be the most scenic,popular and crowded (we meet only 2 hikers and 6 on a bicycle….)

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

The trail length is 5.5 Miles round-trip ,moderate difficulty except the last 400 feet  that are strenuous,the trail can be seen on the map above ,starting at the parking lot near “YOU ARE HERE” all the way to the lighthouse peak(the blue line).

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TX

During the 13 years since we started RVing we hiked quite a bit and I can sincerely say that this is one of the best sceneries I have experienced over the years , it can be compared to hiking in the Bryce Canyon S.P in Utah.

When we started the hike the temperature was around the 80’s but it heated up fast to 93F…..

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

We made sure to take it easy ,take pictures,look around and back to see how the scenery changes as we hike,there was no dole minute but the peak was after 2.5 miles when we suddenly saw the “Lighthouse” from far away.

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

Climbing up and down the last part was on a slide steep sandy path but it sure worth the effort.

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX  Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX 

This is how it looks at the peak,could not go higher…happy I brought my tripod.

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TXPalo Duro Canyon S.P TX     Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

The view from the top is breathtaking ,we forgot all about the heat,the sweat and just took it all in…

Palo Duro Canyon S.P TX

This hike was our last on this trip and a great way to “close” the season,it was fun ,colourful,interesting and we are already looking ahead to our next trip in summer 2015.

Thank you all for visiting our blog,hope to “see” you all again.

2 comments:

Claire Kennedy said...

Love your pictures. This is on my bucket list and can't wait to go. The geography looks fabulous.

Karen and Tony said...

Beautiful photos! I love the rippled rock that you're standing on in the last picture. It's so interesting to think about the amount of time that has passed since water made those marks.