Hot Times in Caprock Canyon State Park

— on August 16, 2018 by in travel

Caprock Canyon State Park feels like somewhere I’ve spent a lot of time, but looking at my photos, I’ve only really been there a couple of times. That isn’t surprising since it is a 7 hour drive (each way) from Austin. Still, it is one of my favorite Texas photographic destinations.

Caprock Canyon - Summer Day - North Loop Trail and Red Hill


The process of decomposing.
— Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Caprock Canyon is defined by the landscape: the high panhandle planes break down to become the Edwards plateau. A layer of harder cap rock protects the top of a thick layer of soft red sandstone.  Water has broken through this cap rock to the east of the edge that Caprock Canyon lies on. The result is a region of eroded canyons (Palo Duro Canyon SP is part of the same breakdown). The cap rock is still visible atop some of the formations.

A peice of the cap rock falls down due to erosion.

What that boils down to is interesting topography, which is a refreshing change in a state that is mostly flat (including the hill country). The park is full of sheer red cliffs, eroded canyons and interesting rock formations.

Caprock Canyon - Summer Day - Details of Red Sandstone

The formations are not huge. The tallest rise just short of 700 feet above the lowest elevation in the park, but that is still dramatic especially with the red sandstone and green mesquite and cedar.

Caprock Canyon - Summer Day - Trail back to the Parking Area with Nice Clouds

The temp was around 105F last weekend when I was there. I cut my hike short (approximately 4 miles all in) and packed it in until after dark. Still, summer is a great time to go because the milky way is up.

Night Sky

The other major draw of Caprock Canyon is the night sky. Caprock is in the middle of no-where pretty much. The skies are very dark. I shot my first milky way panorama at Caprock Canyon back in 2013. This trip was no disappointment. I shot a 360 degree panorama.