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  • Our first stop on our road trip was out to Caprock Canyon State Park. We took U.S. 287 from Fort Worth out past Mineral Wells Wichita Falls, a town I’d never been too and I was surprised that it was a decent sized city, and on into the rugged, western setting of Texas. We thought we’d prepared and brought everything but once on the road we realized we’d forgotten our dinners. We’d decided to buy those heat and serve frozen meals, like Berrtolli or Stouffers, since they are easy to cook and pretty tasty so we pulled over into a dinky little town with a tiny grocery store to buy more. Well, apparently small towns jack up prices because they were wanting over $9 for those meals when in a normal town you could get them for $5 or $6. We passed and continued on until we found a bigger city.

    Sometime in the afternoon we finally made it to Caprock Canyon SP where we quickly realized it was going to be a very quiet spot. The lady at the front desk told us to be careful with our water consumption since the trail we wanted to go on had no water and you could quickly become dehydrated, but she also warned us of potential flash floods since Tropical Storm Hermine was going to be narrowly touching the park that night.

    We grabbed our gear and set off for a hike down the Canyon Loop/Upper Canyon trail. Somewhere along the way I decided to turn around and let Chris keep going since I felt a bit rushed to do a 7 mile trip in only a few hours when I wanted to stop and ‘smell the cactus’ so to speak. We agreed to meet at the other end where he’d come out at so I turned around and went back to some spots that I’d skipped by in our haste to keep going. I ended up going to a few other spots and tinkering in a creek bed for awhile. It was fun to step in the clay mud and look for tiny little nuances and perfect scenes.

    Here are the photos I took that I decided to be for the blog. I’m still working on the ones that I think are ‘best’ and will show those at a later date.

    Oh, here is a post on another blog with more detailed information about the park: Blog. If you are looking for a quiet park to do some exploration, this is the park to go to!

    white flower

    I’m actually amazed at how many sunflowers dot the roadsides and fields around Texas.


    cracked earth




    western diamondback flickr
    We drove down the main road at night to see what kind of animals we might run into when we saw this western diamondback snake. It was friendly enough to let us take some shots and I got out my 300mm so I could take a few. Our first western diamondback!

    deer flickr
    The next morning we drove outside of the park and saw some scissortail flycatchers and spotted these, well, what I believe to be, mule deer. Either that or they are a very dark morph of a white tailed deer.

    Of course I didn’t have the right lens on or enough time when we spotted some bobwhite running around on the side of the road, so I only go this shot…

    And this one of a group flying away.

    I wish I could have spent more time at this park but we moved on the next day. I’d love to go back and do more of the trails and even do some backpacking in the park. It is truly a unique place!

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    1. Patrice L says:

      Wow! This park looks DIVINE!!! It reminds me a lot of Arizona (we lived there for 5 years and sometimes I miss it until I look at their summer temperatures). Anyways, as usual, you are a fantastic photographer. I hope the job hunt is going okay. I just gave up a big freelance project (too much stress), so I am hoping to pick up some other work elsewhere. BTW, I saw Grace Potter at a Farm Aid concert a few years ago and thought she was fantastic. Oh, and your niece is really cute!

    2. Curtis says:

      Are you sure 287 goes through Mineral Wells????

    3. mlittle says:

      Yes, I just wrote the wrong city. hahahah!

    4. Curtis says:

      Okay. That’s much better. I thought I was going crazy for a moment.

    5. Donald Beard says:

      Glad you enjoyed your visit! It is a truly magnificent park and we hope you come back to see us soon!!!

      By the way, that was Mule deer that you were seeing.

      Donald Beard
      Park Superintendent
      Caprock Canyons State Park

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