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Help with planning a trip this weekend!

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Offline txhiker

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Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« on: September 16, 2009, 04:22:43 PM »
Howdy folks,

I was planning on going to hike the Eagle Rock Loop in Arkansas this weekend (leaving tomorrow, return on Sunday) however looks like it will rain and the river is high. So now I need to find somewhere else to go. I am looking for a 25+ mile trip than can be done over 2.5 days. It should be within 4-5 hours of Dallas (more is ok if worth while) and hopefully a loop.

Here are the current options i am looking at:

Goodwater trail by Georgetown (26 miles) or Horsetheif/Billy creek trail (27 miles) in Oklahoma.

Does anyone know of a 25+ mile loop other than these? If not a loop...something that is over 25 miles that is worth while? I know about the LBJ grasslands but that doesn't appeal to me too much. I know about the trailways at Mineral Wells, Caprock canyon but those don't appeal to me much either.

I will be sure to post a trip report when I return!
"I wasn't born in Texas, but, I came here as fast as I could"
<---- Eating a prickly pear cacuts fruit as seen on Man Vs. Wild.
Mesquite, TX

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oldfatman

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2009, 04:47:59 PM »
No personal experience, but maybe the Wichita Mountains in OK.

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Offline txhiker

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2009, 05:23:25 PM »
I've thought of the Wichita mountains however they have very limited trails (longest is 5 miles).

PS. I've been reading your blog and really enjoy them. When I get a little older my wife and I plan to do the same :-)
"I wasn't born in Texas, but, I came here as fast as I could"
<---- Eating a prickly pear cacuts fruit as seen on Man Vs. Wild.
Mesquite, TX

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Offline Roy

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2009, 06:27:21 PM »
Well,  there's plenty of trails in the piney woods.  Don't know of any loops but you should be able to figure out something in this area:

http://www.fs.fed.us/r8/texas/recreation/sam_houston/lonestarhiking.shtml

Might still be pretty soggy with all the rain last week, tho.

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Offline chuckt

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2009, 06:40:28 PM »
What's wrong with Caprock Canyon? It seems much more interesting than Lake Georgetown. I've
gone mountain biking at LGT several times (though the entire loop isn't open to bikes yet) and it doesn't seem like it would be worth the trip if you've done a lot of backpacking before. It might be a could training/warmup for something more remote I guess.

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Offline txhiker

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2009, 06:56:09 PM »
Roy: thanks, I'll take a look at the LSHT, I saw something about it 2 or so years ago and hadn't thought about it.

Chuckt: Caprock Canyon doesn't really have enough consecutive trail miles to make a good trip. I've done Goodwater before and though it doesn't have the scenary it still is a loop without many thrills but good to get out there. CC has several good trails but I wouldn't use them for backpacking...I've done the trails as day hikes and enjoyed them. The trailway is good for bikes mainly..at least that is my point of view.
"I wasn't born in Texas, but, I came here as fast as I could"
<---- Eating a prickly pear cacuts fruit as seen on Man Vs. Wild.
Mesquite, TX

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Offline cjacob

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2009, 07:41:35 PM »
Drive to Big Bend @ 130 mph.  Good Luck finding a trip.  What about Palo Dureo Canyon?

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Offline dkerr24

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2009, 08:34:48 PM »
Unless this *&!!@@! low pressure system that's been stuck over TX and OK for the past week moves out soon, doubt you're going to find anywhere within 4-5 hours of Dallas that isn't soggy and muddy.

While the Wichita Mtns are a great place to do shorter training hikes, the park just doesn't have enough room open to the public to allow for overnight hikes without repeating a lot of trails.  I wish they'd open up the other half of the park that is off-limits to the public for backpackers.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2009, 08:37:50 PM by dkerr24 »

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Offline TexasAggieHiker

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2009, 10:54:28 PM »
Here's the website for the Lone Star Trail Hiking Club.  http://www.lshtclub.com/Default.htm  Lots of info and maps that cover the entire trail.  The trail itself is 128 miles from one end to the other.  There are several loops on the west side that would be exactly what you are looking for.  And the west side is also in a wilderness area.  There's a section that is over grown, but there is an old forest road that parallels the section and is clear.  There is plenty of ponds along the way for water.  And if you do a section along Lake Conroe, there is a REALLY nice place to camp.  It's a great hidden treasure.  You'll probably go the entire trip without seeing anyone else.

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Offline walkingman06

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2009, 01:18:56 PM »
You will get a good workout on the HorseThief Springs/Billy Creek trails in the Winding Stair Mountains although the length of the loop is less than 25 miles. I did this last November and enjoyed it as a warmup for the OML.
http://www.ouachitamaps.com/Horsethief.html

There is another option, the Talimena-Bohannon Loop in the same location, again though these are about 17 miles in length.
http://www.ouachitamaps.com/TalimenaBo.html

Here is a good site for more options http://www.ouachitamaps.com/index.html

These trails intersect the Ouachita Trail http://www.friendsot.org/ that you may follow as far as you would like into Arkansas.

As dkerr24 told you, we have had a week of rain, so most trails in the eastern part of Oklahoma are going to be wet.

Have fun and post a trip report (with pics for Homero)
Moving in silent desperation
Keeping an eye on the holy land
A hypothetical destination
Say, who is this walking man?
James Taylor
Posted from Tulsa, OK

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Offline txhiker

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2009, 09:54:54 PM »
TexasAggieHiker: Thanks for the tip on the LSHT. I looked it up and can get a nice trip there, however Hunting season began a few days ago and you can now only camp at designated campsites. Water I was told wasn't very available because they haven't had much rain and what is there they suggest we don't filter. There are 2 campgrounds but from what I heard only 1 had water cause they were digging a new well at the other. I was considering starting at Hunstville SP and hike west doing an outer loop but just there isn't a campground at a good location. I'll keep it in mind for the future though.

Walkingman06: I decided not to go to OK because of the heavy chance of rain for tonight and over the weekend. I might end up doing the HorseThief/Billy creek trails in November if I get a chance. I didn't know about the Talimena-Bohannon trail although I have done the Old Military/Boardstrand trail. I appreciate the link as I love doing loops and always try not to go back the way I came.

In the end I'll go to the Goodwater trail in Georgetown. I've done it before but its the only place that has good weather, water, is a loop, and has enough mileage to not have me sitting around camp for hours :-)
Thanks all for your help! I'll post pics and a trip report on my return.
David
"I wasn't born in Texas, but, I came here as fast as I could"
<---- Eating a prickly pear cacuts fruit as seen on Man Vs. Wild.
Mesquite, TX

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Offline txhiker

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Re: Help with planning a trip this weekend!
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2009, 04:50:04 PM »
Hello all, been very busy and haven't had a chance to write up a trip report. In the mean time, i've posted some pics http://outdoors.webshots.com/album/574745024GyLJmd. Will write up soon.
"I wasn't born in Texas, but, I came here as fast as I could"
<---- Eating a prickly pear cacuts fruit as seen on Man Vs. Wild.
Mesquite, TX

 


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