Valley Spring Creek Trail | Inks Lake State Park


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Ovate-leaf Cliffbrake, Pellaea ovata

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Tradescantia sp.

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Ovate-leaf Cliffbrake, Pellaea ovata

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Blunt Woodsia fern, Woodsia obtusa

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Fairy-Swords, Myriopteris lindheimeri

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Corn Gromwell, Buglossoides arvensis — non-native

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By far the most popular spot at Inks Lake State Park is the Devil’s Waterhole and Valley Spring Creek Trail. Located at the far northeast end of the park, the area is full of rocky boulders that lure both kids and adults into climbing up on them and when the season is right, swimming in the Devil’s Waterhole. It’s absolutely scenic, if not crowded, and would be a great taste of the park if you don’t have much time to spend or are driving through the Hill Country.

Chris and I came through Inks Lake back in the fall of 2011 when we did our Texas State Parks road trip. Unfortunately I don’t have many photos of this time because that hard drive I was using broke, and apparently I didn’t write about it either. But I do know that we did walk to the Devil’s Waterhole though I can’t remember us doing much else in the park!

The rocks were what drew Forest’s attention and we first climbed up a 4′ ledge to see what was on top, thinking that it was a way down to the waterhole. We found a great view but were stuck in that location without a safe way down and had to climb back down the ledge and walk a bit further down the trail. The waterfall area was busy but not as busy as I would expect it to be when the temperature heats up, and with the low water flow you could easily have waded or rock hopped to the other side of the creek and picked up the Devil’s Backbone Nature Trail on the other side. Instead we continued down the Valley Spring Creek Trail to the crossing at Park Road 4 and then looped our way back on the south part of the trail to get back to the parking lot. That section of trail was significantly quieter than the lower trail near the creek—I don’t think we can ran into anyone else. It doesn’t take much to lose the crowds when you get away from a super popular part of a park!

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