Explore a fossiliferous Pliocene-aged site! Did you know horses evolved in North America? The Hagerman Horse, Equus simplicidens, was the first true horse but its bones most closely resembled Grevy
This trail starts at the intersection of refuge road and wildlife road. There is a gate that you can walk around to start the trail. There is only enough parking area for a couple of cars. For the first two miles you can walk along the old railroad bed. It is raised 2 to 4 feet above the surrounding fields. At the 0.8 mile mark you enter the trees which adds interest and helps block the wind. At the 1.5 mile mark you come to the gate at Terry Lane. If you hop the gate and the one of the other side of Terry Lane the trail continues east but is not as well maintained and doesn't get near as much usage. Check out the first bridge east of Terry lane, it is stamped with a date of 1926.
At the east end of the railroad bed you can turn left (north) and walk along the refuge boundary and explore that tract. Or you can jog to the south a few feet then continue east. When you get to the eastern most part of the refuge you can turn south along the fence line and continue until you come to the creek bed. I have yet to find a way over that creek so its back to the old rail line and back across Terry Lane. There is another side trail that can be taken to the north that takes you up toward Hagerman road. Anytime you leave the old rail bed the trail goes through taller grass but is still easy to follow.
Fun trail, wide, lightly used. The official trail is a 2.7 mile loop that covers the western part of this tract of land. At the NE corner of the official loop I turned east and followed the fence line of the refuge. Much of this part of the unofficial trail gets mowed from time to time making it a moderate walk. Occasional sightings of deer, wild hogs, squirrels and many birds. Off the trail there is mostly thick forest but also some small open fields. The southern part of this unofficial trail is thru a field. Follow the game trails thru the tall grass to get back to the main trail.
Alternately, you can skip the eastern part of this tract of land, stay on the main trail for an easy 2.7 mile loop trail.
I walked 3 miles of this trail. The first section is a mostly-shaded paved trail that loops around. Half-way through the loop, there's an option to tak another 1-mile unpaved loop around a pond. There are some bluebird boxes and bird blinds along the way. From there you can take another 2 mile unpaved loop through mostly open area. The trailhead for this is right across the road from the Visitors Center at Hagerman NWR.
This is a nice short half-mile trail through a wooded area at Hagerman NWR. It's well marked. There are also some markers showing native plants. There's a Viewing Tower, but it's currently closed. As it was a hot bright 90 F afternoon, I saw few birds other than a Red Tail Hawk and a Vulture.
This was my first visit to Hagerman Wildlife Refuge. It encompasses 4 different trails over the 11,320 acre refuge. Abundant birds and wildlife even in the heat of summer. We hiked the Harris creek trail following a series of ponds through open fields, grassland and bottom land forest.
We also hiked a nearby 3/4 mile Crow Hill nature trail that curved up crow hill with a scenic lookout and a great view of Lake Texoma. I look forward to longer hikes on the Haller's Haven Nature trail and Meadow Pond trail.