Caprock Canyons State Park and Trailway
|Caprock Canyons State Park and Trailway|
|State Park of Texas|
View from Haynes Ridge
|- elevation||950 m (3,117 ft)|
|- elevation||660 m (2,165 ft)|
|Area||61.97 km2 (24 sq mi)|
|Management||Texas Parks and Wildlife Department|
|Website: TPWD: Caprock Canyons|
Caprock Canyons State Park and Trailway is a Texas state park on the Caprock Escarpment in Briscoe County, Texas, United States, approximately 100 miles (160 km) southeast of Amarillo. The state park opened in 1982 and is 15,313.6 acres (6,197.2 ha) in size, making it the third-largest state park in Texas.
In 1993, a hiking, biking, and equestrian rail trail opened that stretches through the park through Floyd, Briscoe, and Hall counties. The trailway was created after the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department acquired 64.25 miles (103 km) of right-of-way from the abandoned Fort Worth and Denver Railroad's lines between Estelline and the South Plains.
Side canyon carved by erosion.
The park is located in West Texas and has a semi-arid climate. The average January minimum temperature is 19 °F (−7 °C) and the average July maximum is 91 °F (33 °C). The park receives 20.4 inches (520 mm) of precipitation annually.
Flora and fauna
The Park hosts the Texas state bison herd. At the urging of his wife, Charles Goodnight preserved several plains bison from those that were being slaughtered. This herd became one of the genetic sources from which current bison herds descend. The state herd only contains plains bison which have no cattle DNA.
African aouodad sheep (barbary sheep), mule deer, white-tailed deer, coyotes, opossums, raccoons, bobcats, foxes, porcupines, numerous species of snakes and lizards, and over 175 species of birds including Golden Eagles are found within the park. Lake Theo contains bass and catfish.
Greater roadrunner (Geococcyx californianus)
Mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus)
Texas plains bison (Bison bison bison)
- Yellow House Canyon
- Palo Duro Canyon
- Blanco Canyon
- Mount Blanco
- Caprock Escarpment
- Mescalero Escarpment
- Caprock Canyons State Park from the Handbook of Texas Online
- "Caprock Canyons State Park and Trailway". Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Retrieved 31 May 2009.
- "Texas State Bison Herd – Preservation of the Bison". Austin, TX: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.
- McCorkle, Rob (Nov 2011). "Home on the Range". Austin, TX: Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
- Caprock Canyons State Park and Trailway from Texas Parks and Wildlife (TPWD)
- Facilities and Fee Information from TPWD
- Caprock Canyons Facility Map (PDF) from TPWD
- Caprock Canyons Trailway Map and Guide (PDF) from TPWD