It was January 2022 the last time we did a First Day Hike, that time we tromped around Tandy Hills and the newly opened Broadcast Hill trail system. Last year my parents were at our house for New Year’s so we didn’t get out for a hike. This year we spent the week after Christmas in DFW before Chris and I drove to Wichita Falls on New Years Eve to stay at our favorite B&B, the Harrison House in Wichita Falls. We first stayed there in late 2021 after our Charon’s Garden Wilderness Hike in the Wichita mountains and stayed there again on our drive back from New Mexico in June 2022. It was a nice detour this year and I couldn’t believe it had been a year and a half since we’d been up there. Time flies and all of that…
So, we left Forest with my parents for this week between New Year’s and the return to school next week and drove up to Wichita Falls for the night. Yesterday morning we made the drive back home to greater Houston, stopping at Lake Arrowhead State Park on the way out of town. The day was cold and I was thankful my SIL had given me another fleece for a gift because it ended up coming in handy for the chilly wind and cloudy, drab weather. The state park itself was mostly quiet, though there were a few hikers and some campers still out there. Neither of us had been to Lake Arrowhead so it was nice to see a new to us state park. I would definitely go back during the spring or summer to see the blooms as there were a ton of American basketflower seed heads and I can imagine they look pretty spectacular when they are going off.
Fasciation on a prairie coneflower (Ratibida columnifera)
This was at a really cool area on the north end of the Onion Creek Trail and I should have looked in the area bit more after checking the trail map out later to see that it was labeled as a Sandstone Outcrop! I suspect there are some cool plants here during the blooming season. The lichens were really lovely here!
If you are anywhere in the DFW area it is worth the trek out for the day to enjoy this park. Maybe try to visit in the spring when everything is in bloom!