Friday, June 12, 2009

Closed Canyon


The neighbor of Big Bend Ranch National Park and it's 800,000+ acres is Big Bend Ranch State Park and it's 250,000 acres.
Both are spectacular, but even fewer people go to the state park than go to BBNP.


One of my favorite places to visit in Big Bend Ranch SP is Closed Canyon. This is a narrow cut through steep and deep red rock. It is a very much like a slot canyon that is often 8-10 feet wide. I liken it more to being in Utah than Texas.
It is a place well worth a visit.

Like the canyons of Utah, the best time to visit is closer to mid day when the light shines into the canyon and bounces off the walls.



BTW-every visit here is a new experience as the rains and floods alter the canyon on a regular basis. This last trip saw than many areas had been cleaned of sand and gravel. Places that had been flat now had three foot drops to navigate. Places that had been short two foot hops were now a 5 foot scramble down boulders lodged in the cracks and curves of the walls. It was as fun as ever.
Here are a couple of views. first one of the longer stretches of the canyon that really gives one a sense of how deep and narrow it is. the second of a frequent visitor to this area-the Auodad.


Aoudads were introduced to a few areas in west Texas after some of the native desert sheep died off in the early 20th century. In the rugged areas of BBRSP they have established a foothold and I see them on a regular basis when visiting the canyon. This one was high above me on the canyon rim.

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