|High Point, Davis Mountains State Park|
All I can say is it certainly was hot when we got back to Texas. Odessa was in the 100s but when we got back to Alpine, things had cooled down to the low and mid-90s. The mountain towns, Alpine, Ft. Davis and Marfa typically manage to stay about 5 to 10 degrees cooler than the surrounding areas. It may not seem like much, but those degrees can make a difference especially when there are evening breezes. Though it has been much warmer than the mountains of Colorado and New Mexico, we are adjusting and even participating in outdoor activities.
The Alpine Cowboys baseball team is in the playoffs! We went to our first Cowboy game a few nights ago with some friends and really enjoyed the game and the weather. The Cowboys won but it was a close and exciting game. The weather got into the spirit of things, cooling into the 70s by 8 pm with a very steady breeze that almost made me want a light sweater (well, ok, that is stretching it a little).
|On the trail to High Point|
Sunday, we went for a High Point Hike at Davis Mountains State Park. Supposedly Saturday was “Summit Day” encouraging people to climb something so when we saw that the local Master Naturalist chapter was offering a High Point Hike at the state park, we were all in.
|Views from half way up the trail|
The hike started early so we had to get up and drive 30 miles to be at the state park by 7 am. David and I hadn’t been getting up much earlier than 7 so we were surprised at how cool many summer mornings can be here. We dressed for the heat and both of us stayed a little cool for the first hour or so of the hike. But of course, we knew that would not last. Still it was such a pleasant morning and the mountains shaded us during most of the hike to the high point. At the start of the hike, the trail descended a little so that we hit the park’s lowest point of elevation. After that it was a steady climb to the high point in the park at almost 1000 feet higher.
|We made it! High Point at Davis Mountains State Park.|
The breeze on High Point was great and our group of 9 hikers plus the two park rangers enjoyed a snack and some stories on top. Tyler, the interpretive ranger, had some interesting stories of early ranching days in the area which we all enjoyed. We learned of the legend of Delores Mountain which I’ll share one of these days when David and I hike up Delores Mountain. You will have to wait for a little cooler weather though.
Master Naturalist, Steve, is the first to sign the register
that we placed on the high point. Other hikers can now
enter their names in the book, but we were first!
I’ll have to say going down was not quite as fun because we were not in the shade of the mountain anymore and the morning breezes faded to nada. Exposed on the southern slope, it was hot going down. Also, how come the trail never seems quite as rocky when you are going up? We felt those rocks rolling under our feet and had to watch the trail carefully not to stumble.
Joe and Steve heading up towards High Point.
This is one of the gentler sections of the trail.
Though not the elevation gains of some of the hikes we did on our recent trip to Colorado and New Mexico, High Point was challenging because of the heat and rockiness of the trail. Also, it was almost 9 miles, so we had a workout right here in our own backyard. We will be checking out other hikes in our area but maybe not until it is just a little cooler.
Ranger Tyler Priest explains what that white stuff in the creek bed is.
Can you believe, dried algae? The creek was flowing not too long ago.
In the last week we have unpacked and settled back in. Silver is cleaned up and ready for some fall and winter camping before too long. So, I’ll plan to keep adding some blog entries this fall and winter. We should be checking out lots of great places in the Big Bend area over the next six months or so. Then we will have to see what happens. Someday in the next few years, we may go back on the road again full time. But in the meantime we will stay fairly close to home, adventuring where we are.
|This bunch of sticks in the walking stick cholla is a cactus wren nest.|
Days Hiked 1Total Miles Hiked 8.5
Total Elevation Gain 1,050
|High Point View|