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There are dogs all over this park but most people appear to have cleaned up. The main trail is just a gravel road down to the lake. You can detour up a hill and find yourself on Dana Peak,very rapidly. Hang left on the way up to get the best vistas while walking. The hike off the peak is a bit steep in places and you may need to look down a bit to keep your footing. Back on the mail path, go up the hill and hang a left for a detour that will feel like you are trespassing on someone's private farm No real views there but the light through the overhanding trees and a few moments of open grass area make this hike special and very quiet.
Jarvis and I started out on the main trail. We took the first trail to the left. This took us through a tunnel of shrub trees. We crested a hill, then hooked back to the main trail. We then took the trail up a peak overlooking the lake. Climbed a crop of rocks with cactus overhang. View was awesome. Totally worth it. Followed the trail down the other side, to another hill. Went to the peak, got tangled in shrub trees. No view. Totally not worth it. Followed lakeside trail back to Start Point. Found a Geocache box on this trail. Overall good trail.
This park opened again this past summer. There's free parking near the firebreak trail. If you go a little further down the road there's a place for boaters to pay, but you can just ask for a trail map and turn around and park where it's free.
I went this morning as there is little to no shade. Saw a bunch of deer and a monarch butterfly. There's also a little creek sort of place that crosses Fire lane with just a board to get across the mud, but it's not bad. As a bonus as of right now the very shallow pool is teeming with tadpoles.
I was alone pretty much the entire time I was out. I was passed by one biker and as I was heading to my car a lady was just coming in with her dog.
Edited to say free maps are availble on http://www.centraltexastrails.org/index.html
My husband and I live near this park and hike here occasionally, when we want a nice morning hike. We have ever had a map of the trails- and we have tried new paths each time we come. It is a nice, easy hike and there are only a few people. Most often we would run into other people biking the trails. On the main trail we did not find much shade, and turned around- as we always take our toddler (in a toddler backpack) and she was getting fussy. As soon as it cools down we will be going back to hike more of the main trail. If you cross the street at the trail head there is another trail that meanders along the trail and eventually down to the lake. We hiked this and then followed the beach back to the parks enterence. We let the dogs off the leash and it was truly enjoyable.
The park was damaged by a flood in 2007. I learned from a Ranger that the park will be closed until 2010 when the repairs are estimated to be complete.
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