It’s hard to believe that Julie and I only have a few more days here at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area. Today we work, tomorrow we work, and then we have two days to get ready and it’s time to go!
With time running short, we’ve spent quite a bit of time the past week hiking and climbing. I hope you all enjoy these pictures.
The park encompasses five peaks. In order of height, they are: Enchanted Rock (the one 95% of visitors climb, elevation of 1,825 feet), Little Rock (the one visible out of the rear window of Cas, seen in an earlier post), Turkey Peak (the less domed one that stands near Sandy Creek), Freshmen mountain and Buzzard’s Roost, which have more vegetation and sort of run together.
Why do the rocks at Enchanted Rock look so odd? It’s an old magma field that spreads out about 100 sq. miles in this area.
Countless millions of years ago, Texas was situated in a tall volcanic mountain range about the height of the Himalayas today. Enchanted Rock and the other granite peaks in this area were all far underground, part of a heated underground pool of lava. Over a very long period of time as tectonics shifted, and the magma slowly cooled in layers.
Over an even greater period of time, the mountains wore down, exposing their ancient centers of lava – now turned to granite.
Granite weathers slower than the surrounding limestone, so while the limestone continues to erode away, the granite resists and becomes the peaks and domes you see today.
I’m not sure if I ever mentioned this before, but for those interested in visiting Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, the cost is $7 per person 13 and older, unless you own the Texas Parks State Pass. Tent sites start at $18 a night, extra fees apply for more people or vehicles, there are no RV spots. There is however about 10 bus and RV parking spots up near the headquarters, so RVers can visit for the day. The lot isn’t very level though.
The Summit Trail is 0.6 miles one way, and goes up to the top of Enchanted Rock – the most popular trail in the park. Because of the 400 ft. elevation gain, expect it to take 30-45 minutes to go up depending on how athletic you are. The loop trail is 4.1 miles long, and circles all five peaks (this is the one Julie and I go jogging on). Turkey Peak Pass and Echo Canyon Trails cut across the loop trail between various peaks.
For some people, saying goodbye to a place is really tough. I rarely have that problem though – I know there are a lot of excellent places still to see, and because of the flexibility of the lifestyle I live, getting back to places and people I miss isn’t that hard.
Where to next? I’ll be dropping Julie off in Wisconsin to get back to her real life and visiting friends and family there for about a month before I head out to Yellowstone for the summer. In the meantime, we’re planning to stop in the Ozarks and St. Louis on the way up to WI – not to mention getting my water heater replaced finally(!).
I’d also like to thank each and every one of you who bought a copy of ‘Solo Full-time RVing On A Budget’. I hope those of you looking to start full-timing get a lot of use out of it, feedback from those who have already finished the guide has been overwhelmingly positive. Sales have been a lot higher than I expected too, and I believe it’s because a lot of my readers who are already on the road bought a copy just to show their support, and I really appreciate that. If you haven’t gotten the guide yet and are interested in it, the introductory special price of $4.99 will be ending tomorrow night (the 28th, at 11:59 pm central daylight time).
On Sunday Julie and I are driving out to Pedernales Falls State Park for a day trip, so expect to hear about that next!
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