Logan L. on Davis Mountains State Park Trail
We had a wonderful hike. It was comfortable August morning and could not have thought of a better place to be. I went up the Skyline trail and returned on the old CCC trail. It was a nice loop.
This paved road goes from the camping area and climbs to the summit of the mountain to the southeast. It has a couple of switchbacks, and yet not intimidating. There are several pullouts that offer great views of the surrounding area. Near the end are several picnic tables.
Did this trail from east to west. The sign says there is a 289' elevation change The trail has some very rocky places, and is overgrown. The views are OK, but not that great You can cut off about .5 mile if you access the trail from the toilet building east of the end of Skyline Drive
Preparing for an upcoming group trek, I backpacked the 4 mile trail (1-way) that starts in the equestrian area, across from park HQ. This 4 mile trail increases in elevation from 5000 to 5900' and has some fairly challenging areas. We hiked it with our dogs in August, so it was hot, but bearable with appropriate rest stops. There was a nice breeze for most of the hike. We camped at the primitive campsite indicated on the current park map, but the trail continues on past that point. After setting camp at a peak overlooking the parking area, we day hiked further along the trail. With packs and dogs in August heat, the hike up took about 4-1/2 hours. The trek back down took 2 hours. There is no water up on the mountain, so length of stay is limited by how many days' water supply you are able to tote. We were fortunate in that it rained and we were able to harvest rainwater. An excellent hike with beautiful vistas, I will be taking a group of women back in late September of 2014.
This is a beautiful trail and a nice way to get a taste of the Davis Mountians area a couple hours. If you take it slow, take lots of pictures, and enjoy the scenery this is an easy hike. We started on the campsite side and ended at the Indian Lodge. It's then another mile or less to the campsite. There are other trails to explore around there as well and makes for a nice way to fill a weekend of camping or even if you are just passing through.
This review is for the main loop trail in Davis Mts State Park. It is the combination of the Skyline Drive trail which ends into the CCC trail. The Skyline trail starts at the Interpretive center. The CCC trail ends near the start of the skyline trail. The loop is a little over 4 miles. There are good switchbacks at the beginning of the Skyline, you climb about 600 ft. There are good views once you reach the ridge. There is a lookout of the old Indian Lodge built back in the 1930's which is also in the park.
I found it very enjoyable. Saw only one person. You can add another 3.0 miles if you take the trail down and back to Fort Davis. (1.5 miles each way). I did not hike down to the Fort. In parts the trail is crushed square rock. Hard on the feet if you have no sole protection.
Saw a Tarantula as a bonus. See photo.
I included the link for the state map which shows all the trails. There are a couple other smaller trails also.