Dante's Loop through Purgatory Creek Natural Area

MODERATE 186 reviews

Dante's Loop through Purgatory Creek Natural Area is a 8.6 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near San Marcos, Texas that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

8.6 miles
482 feet

dogs on leash



mountain biking

nature trips

trail running





wild flowers



The 463-acre Purgatory Creek Natural Area is within the Edwards Aquifer recharge zone, is home to Purgatory Creek, and includes upland meadows, canyon bluffs of 40 feet or more, dense juniper thickets, champion oaks, and a flood control dam.

14 days ago

Nice trail, not long, but enjoyable for what it is.

trail running
1 month ago

Trail markers are bit confusing. Still great trail to run!

2 months ago

Great trail!

3 months ago

Great for your local walk, not worth driving to just to go hiking.

trail running
3 months ago

The terrain is a nice mixture with enough smooth surface for running. Great opportunity to make it as long or short of a adventure as you want.

5 months ago

8 months ago

needs a little more upkeep. areas are very rough, pointy sharp rocks sticking out of ground where path is. very beautiful.

10 months ago

Half of the trails are closed this time of year. But this wasn't posted until we got there. The trails that are open are nothing but rocks. Watch your feet.

mountain biking
10 months ago

The trail is pretty good overall (I loved it) it's a great trail it's on the NW side of the trail when it gets very challenging.

11 months ago

Wish there was water Carrier there. Other than that perfect place to spend all day

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

Great park for a nice quick getaway and picnic. Had a run in with several deer and one snake. Man made structures and traffic noise are abundant at the start of the trail at the lower entrance but once you get up, over, and down into the bowl area it's not so bad. Didn't make it to the northern part of the park but will certainly be back to explore.

Friday, March 03, 2017

Great trail.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

This complex has over 9 miles of trails. The entrance trail at Hunter does pass drainage infrastructure but the rest is very natural.
There is wildlife and cactus. Most of the trail is fairly clear but there is enough up and down with rocks and roots to add interest. There are a few nice beauty spots.
The rating of moderate fits for about a third of the trail. The rest is easy.
Complaints of not pretty or not marked well enough are funny to me. Nine miles of semi arid area with cactus and mesquite over rocky hills will present some small challenges. That's why people do it. If you didn't see pretty, then you didn't hike far enough.
If you are posting complaints about navigational challenges here, then you are not fully utilizing the app.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Surprisingly good trail. Varied terrain. Some areas are not very clearly marked so it is easy to get turned around. Lots of trail work going on so I expect it to be better each time.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

nice trail, but can get a little repetitive as far as scenery goes. but overall it is a great trail to hike and love going with my dog!

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Lots of beautiful butterflies floating around.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Put in at Prospect Park TH and hiked to Upper Purgatory and returned. Well marked and maintained trails.

Friday, July 08, 2016

No water. As stated, does not loop.

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Some trails were pretty crowded by brush and it was a little closer to civilization than I'd like but still really nice! Also, clearly marked which is nice.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Trails need to be more define, need more maps posted and areas need to be well kept. It was just OK.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Several of the trails are washed out. Nothing fabulous about the trails. Trails not marked well and are overgrown.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016


Sunday, June 19, 2016

We were pretty disappointed by this trail. Part of it was closed - which was the shaded part. We went on the part of the trail that was getting full sun exposure, and it was miserably hot. The trail isn't kept up/frequented enough to keep the trail clean. The path is very narrow and flowers/weeds/plants are constantly rubbing and scratching on your shins. Wish I would have worn long pants, but then I might have passed out from the heat. There wasn't any good views. Just a rock pile, highway, and completely dried out creek bed. The trail didn't have much elevation, so it wasn't a very good workout. (The most athletic part of the hike was dodging the weeds). Somehow, we ended up on the "closed" part of the trail, as well as an area that said we would be arrested for going on. Too bad we didn't see the signs until exiting those areas. Things are not clearly marked at all. On the plus side, I got a few pics of pretty flowers...but most were dried out & dead.

Friday, June 10, 2016

We did the trail on a Thursday. Not many people and easy parking. Porta-potty at trailhead (south entrance). We had a great time and it seemed a majority of the trail was in the shade.

Would do this again

Friday, April 15, 2016

got lost in the trails but it doesn't matter we were there to get a workout and we did! great place to unwind and enjoy nature.

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Amazing trail. Run it very often.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

This morning I am extremely happy that I was able to photograph deer during my hike at Purgatory Creek. Then i found out a stone, which had a fossil part in it.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Today sharp 7am in the morning I started my hike at the bottom of the Purgatory Creek. I took my way to Beatrice hike. This was a unique as this trek mostly it follows the way of the stream. To day I observed a small snake which was around one and half foot, with brown and black straps on its body. I also made some photographs of birds and flowers and enjoyed a beautiful sunrise among the trees & full of nature. It was a great blessing to enjoy the nature on this fine morning.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

I so much enjoyed my walked right this morning at 6:30 am onward. This activity was not only helping me with my physical fitness but also a great source of my spiritual health. I heard the beautiful songs of the birds and in fact i recorded some of them. This trail is in most natural form and a great opportunity of a morning walk and recreation for individuals and groups. The only thing, it should have sitting place like many I have observed in New Zealand.

Monday, August 10, 2015

This is a nice getaway. The description says 4.7 miles, You can go double that.distance easily. This is my "go to" tail when I need woods time. There is a mix of smooth trail and rock gardens. The trails are marked very well.

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