San Angelo State Park

Trail
50.00 Miles
N/A
$4.00
4stars (4.27)320
1star (1.11)
4point5stars (4.61)
N/A
Yes
N/A
N/A
San Angelo
Tom Green
More Info
Photos
Garden Spider
Saw quite a few of these spiders at various places while on today's hike. (Photo by MikeHikes)
Watching from the Bushes
This grey fox ran into the bushes and watched as I tried to get his picture, after about ten seconds, he went deeper in and I lost sight of him. This was the best of the bunch. (Photo by MikeHikes)
Small but Photogenic!
Near the end of the East Potts Creek Trail, this horned toad sat in the middle of the trail. I got the photo and because he was small (about the size of my thumb), I made him get off the trail and scamper to safety in the surrounding brush. (Photo by MikeHikes)
Fox on Potts
Another trail user. He saw me coming, courteously stopped so I could take his photo, then departed in no particular hurry. (Photo by MikeHikes)
To The Death!
The wasp and Black Widow fought and the wasp was the winner - Nature is not always kind. (Photo by MikeHikes)
One Eye (of a) Jack .... Rabbit
No injuries observed! When I readied to get a photo, he saw me and tucked a little deeper into the grass, but was still easy to see. After I snapped the shot, he took off ....... like a Jack Rabbit! (Photo by MikeHikes)
A Good Singer
Lots of songs came from him as he sought a mate. (Photo by MikeHikes)
Watch Where You Step!
The "second of the year" Horned Toad I saw; he was just off Tasajilla Flats at the beginning of the hike. He didn't move fast so always watch where you step. (Photo by MikeHikes)
First Horned Toad for 2019
An active little guy who scampered off the trail but kindly paused long enough for me to get a photo. (Photo by MikeHikes)
Where's The Trail?!?
Most of Tasajilla Flats Trail is overgrown due to the recent rains. Caution is advised where you place your feet! (Photo by MikeHikes)
Lemon Mint and  a Butterfly
Don't know what kind of butterfly this is but it made for a nice picture! (Photo by MikeHikes)
Cottontail Rabbit
Commonly seen in the past, rarely seen in the present - the Cottontail Rabbit. (Photo by MikeHikes)

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Log Entries
North Shore Bell's Trailhead to River Bend Ghost camp and back
By MikeHikes on 8/17/2019
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 7.20 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Out -      Bell's Trailhead > DInosaur Trail > Dinosaur Tracks Viewing Area > Dinosaur Trail > Lower Big Hill > North Scenic Loop > service road (W) 50 meters > Badlands > River Bend > service road         4.7 miles

Return -  Service road (ENE) > Lower Ghost Camp Trail > River Bend Ghost Camp > Lower Ghost Camp > South SLick Rock > Trailhead to Trailhead (N) (service road) > Shady Trail > Bell's Trailhead                2.5 miles

Temps started at 79 and ended at 96, sunny, light and steady wind.

All trails were dry, easy to traverse and had been groomed fairly recently.  The only animals seen today were the longhorns; there were some birds out but they were not abundant.  The one creature we saw the most of, were spiders - specifically, Garden Spiders!  It seemed every minute or two, we saw another spider either in it's web or on a plant close to the trail.  Grasshoppers were also evident; these were "normal" grasshoppers, the larger ones we saw only a time or two.

We had the trails to ourselves with the exception of seeing a few mountain bikers and a pair of equestrians. 

NOTES

Water and info kiosk available at Bell's Trailhead; water is located at various campsites near the trailhead.

Water, shade and info kiosk available at Dinosaur Tracks Viewing Area.

Water, shade, info kiosks and dry toilets available at the River Bend Ghost Camp area.  IMPORTANT - although water is available, when I tried it, the water had a noticeable "swampy" smell and taste. 

 

South Shore Burkett Park to Roadrunner Loop Figure 8
By MikeHikes on 8/12/2019
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 9.70 Miles Duration: 4 hours

Leg 1 -  Burkett Park > WS to LL Connector > Lanky Lackey > Nature Loop > Tasajilla Flats > Playground parking area      3.8 miles

Leg 2 -  Playground parking area > Roadrunner Loop > Playground parking area       3.0 miles

Leg 3 -  Playground parking area > Chaparral > Winding Snake > Burkett Park         2.9 miles

Temp started at 76, ended at 96.  Sunny with steady light wind.

Trails are all dry and have been groomed.  We're in the 15th straight day of 100+ degree temps with no rain so vegetation has not grown much.  The birds were not active at all; individual flyers were out and I saw a dozen baby quail with an adult pair fly out when I approached, otherwise, not many birds were out and the ones that were, are looking scraggly!

I saw about 10 white tail deer, including one fawn with spots, at various locations.  A grey fox was seen on Lanky Lackey - it had been lounging in the sun when it jumped up and watched me from some bushes (photo attached).

Overall, a good hike on a very warm day!

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett park.

Water, shade, info kiosk and toilets available at Playground parking area.

Water and shade available at various campsites parallel to Roadrunner Loop.  There are toilets available at the midway point of the Loop.

 

South Shore Armadillo Ridge to Playground Parking Area Figure 8
By MikeHikes on 7/27/2019
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 10.40 Miles Duration: 4 hours

Leg 1 -  Burkett park > WS to LL Connector > Roller coaster > West Potts Creek > Armadillo > East Potts Creek > Burkett Trail > Burkett Park      3.7 miles

Leg 2 - Burkett Park > WS to LL Connector > Lanky Lackey > Nature Loop > Tasajilla Flats > Playground parking area        3.8 miles

Leg 3 - Playground parking area > Chaparral > Winding Snake > Burkett Park     2.9 miles

Temp started at 68, ended at 83.  Sunny with light wind.

The trails were crowded - at least they were crowded compared to the normal amount of traffic I see which is one or two people at most.  The trails themselves are dry and easy to traverse.  Almost all have been groomed and those few spots that haven't, are pretty insignificant as far as obstacles or hinderances.

Today I saw a number of deer; the bucks were 6 and 8 pointers with lots of velvet covering their antlers.  Birds were fairly numerous - cuckoos and painted buntings along with the normally seen birds.   I also saw a small, thin, black snake that may have been one foot long at the most.  Not a quarter a mile down the same trail, a Horned Toad about the size of my thumb, was catching some rays in the middle of the trail.  I got a snap (photo attached) then got him off the trail to safety.

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett Park.

Water, shade, info kiosk and toilets available at Playgroun Parking Area.

Park Mid-Section Burkett Park to Cougar Lookout and back
By MikeHikes on 7/20/2019
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 8.80 Miles Duration: 4 hours

Leg 1 -  Burkett Park > WS to LL Connector > Rollercoaster > West Potts Creek > Armadillo > Turkey Creek > 5 Points Junction    4.3 miles

Leg 2 -  5 Points Junction > River Bend > service road (E) > Cougar Lookout > Flintstone > 5 Points Junction       2.6 miles

Leg 3 -  5 Points Junction > Flintstone (S) > service road (NE) > Trailhead to Trailhead Trail (S) > Burkett Trail > Burkett Park    1.9 miles

Temp started at 72, ended at 92.  Sunny, slightly humid, light breeze.

A very relaxing hike on dry, easy to see and traverse trails. I started early and was rewarded with seeing a fox on two different trails (photo attached), a Tarantula as well as numerous low flying birds.  As I hiked and felt the sun on my back and the wind gently blowing, I happily realized it doesn't get much better than this!

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett Park.

Water, shade and info kiosk available at 5 Points Junction.

Shade, info kiosk and a bicycle repair station available at Cougar Lookout.

 

South Shore Playground Parking Area to Burkett Park
By MikeHikes on 7/17/2019
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: halfstar Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 6.80 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 20 minutes

Leg 1 -  Playground parking area > Chaparral > Red Dam Loop > Chaparral > Winding Snake > Burkett Park     3.4 miles

Leg 2 -  Burkett Park > WS to LL Connector > Lanky Lackey > Nature Loop > Horny Toad > Talley Valley > Chaparral > Playground parking area   3.4 miles

Temps in mid- 70's to mid-80's.  Sunny with some clouds, humid and steady 10mph breeze.

I started earlier than usual.  The animal, bird and insect activity was higher than normal.  Among the highlights were young white tail bucks, tarantulas (which I don't usually see), hummingbirds fighting among themselves as well as one hummingbird defending his territory from a Lark Sparrow.  There were an unusually large flock of grackles hanging around, making lots of noise for no visible reason.

My "first for this year" rattlesnake sighting was made when a 3-4 foot rattler decided to cross the trail about 10 feet in front of me. He started across but then stopped so I tossed a few small stones by him so he'd move.  He made a coil and shook his rattle a few times but seemed to recognize I was not a real threat.  He slowly went into the brush and I quickly got past him. 

I also witnessed a fight to the death between a Black Widow spider and a black wasp; the wasp appeared to have won the battle as it dragged the spider away.

The trails have been groomed and are easy to see except for a few sections of Red Dam Loop.  These sections weren't groomed because the mowing machines can't get to those areas due to the terrain.  IMO hand held weed whackers will be needed to clear those areas.

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and toilets available at Playground Parking Area.

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett Park. 

IMPORTANT - in my last report, I said the faucet at Burkett was damaged, it has been repaired and water is now available.

Park Mid-Section Burkett Park to 5 Points Junction Loop
By MikeHikes on 7/12/2019
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 8.40 Miles Duration: 4 hours

Out      Burkett Park > Burkett Trail > (East) Potts Creek > Armadillo (NE) > Playground > Bell's Point > Playground > Flintstone > 5 Points Junction   3.9 miles

Return  5 Points Junction > Turkey Creek > Armadillo (W) > West Potts Creek > Rollercoaster > WS to LL Connector > Burkett Park     4.5 miles

Temp started at 74, ended at 92.  HUMID, sunny and light to no breeze.

A hot and humid hike today along mostly, groomed and easy to see trails.  Notable exceptions were most of Playground Trail as well as the northernmost section of West Potts Creek Trail.  There were some birds out, no animals except for two cottontails and a lone Jack Rabbit (photo attached).  Grasshoppers are still around and in fairly large numbers, there are some flowers still in bloom, a few strands of Bee Brush are scenting the air and the majority of the park's vegetation is still green; in part, due to some fairly brief but heavy rains on Monday.

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett Park. 

IMPORTANT - as of this report, the water is NOT available at Burkett due to the faucet head breaking on Thursday (July 11, 2019).  Park personnel are aware of the problem and I'm sure the faucet will be repaired soon BUT it is better to bring your own water just in case.

Water and shade available at Bell's Point.

Water, shade and info kiosk available at 5 Points Junction.

 

 

South Shore Playground parking area to Burkett Park + Roadrunner Loop
By MikeHikes on 6/28/2019
Rating: 4point5stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 9.30 Miles Duration: 4 hours

Leg 1 -  Playground parking area > Roadrunner Loop > Playground parking area       3.1 miles

Leg 2 -  Playground parking area > Tasajilla Flats > Horny Toad > Nature Loop > Lanky Lackey > WS to LL Connector > Burkett Park      3.3 miles

Leg 3 -  Burkett Park > Winding Snake > Chaparral > Playground parking area     2.9 miles

Temp started at 73, ended at 90.  Overcast then partly cloudy.  Intermittent light winds.

The trails were dry and easy to traverse, in large part because park personnel have been busy cutting the vegetation and clearing the trails.  A case in point is Roadrunner Loop - a month or so ago, the trail had some very overgrown areas but it has been recently groomed and leveled so it was fairly easy to hike along. 

Today was also a good day to view the various birds populating the park. Besides the usual birds, I also saw a Painted Bunting, a Vermillion Flycatcher, a few Black Throated Sparrows and a Verdin - the Verdin being the first I've seen since 2015 or 2016. 

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and toilets available at Playground paring area.

Water and shade available at various campsites along part of Roadrunner Loop.  There is a toilet near the mid point as well.

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett Park.

 

South Shore Playground Parking Area to Armadillo Ridge Figure 8
By MikeHikes on 6/22/2019
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 10.80 Miles Duration: 4 hours, 30 minutes

Leg 1 -  Playground parking area > Tasajilla Flats > Nature Loop > Lanky Lackey > WS to LL Connector > Burkett Park      3.8 miles

Leg 2 -  Burkett Park > Burkett Trail > (East) Potts Creek > Armadillo (SW) > West Potts Creek > Rollercoaster Trail > WS to LL Connector > Burkett Park   3.7 miles

Leg 3 -  Burkett Park > Winding Snake > Chaparral > Red Dam Loop >Chaparral > Playground Parking Area      3.3 miles

Temp started at 75, ended at 93.  Sunny, then partly cloudy with steady southerly winds.

The vast majority of the trails were dry, easy to traverse and had been groomed with a few notable exceptions - portions of Red Dam Loop (Leg 3) and the section from West Potts Creek/Armadillo junction to Potts Creek (Leg 2).  Both of these areas are overgrown so caution is advised where you place your feet - I saw the tail end of a snake (no rattles) as it slithered into the brush when I slowly approached through the high vegetation covering some of the Red Dam Loop trail.

There were numerous birds singing and I saw a couple of deer, a cottontail rabbit and a grey fox trotting along the road. While hiking along Burkett Trail (Leg 2) I noticed numerous bees buzzing about. I realized the trail goes through a grove of mesquite trees and the trees have produced fronds which appear to attract the bees. The bees were really numerous but didn't bother me so I picked up the pace until their buzzing sound was in the background.

Since the day was so nice, as well as being a Saturday, there were a larger than usual number of hikers and mountain bikers enjoying the trails with me.

Overall, it was very pleasant to hike, listen to the birds, hear the wind blowing through the trees and feel the warmth of the sun.

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and toilets available at the Playground Parking Area

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett Park.

Park Mid-Section Burkett Park to 5 Points Junction and back
By MikeHikes on 6/14/2019
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: halfstar Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 6.40 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Out     -  Burkett Park > WS to LL Connector > Rollercoaster > West Potts Creek > Armadillo > Turkey Creek > 5 Points Junction        4.3 miles

Return - 5 Points Junction > Flintstone (S) > service road (ENE) > Trailhead to Trailhead (S) > Burkett Trail > Burkett Park     2.1 miles

Temp in mid-70's, sunny with a few clouds, steady wind.

Leisurely hike along dry, groomed trails.  The park personnel had been out and cut back a lot of vegetation from the listed trails although there were a few spots they didn't get.  Overall though, the trails were very nice!

With the somewhat high winds, didn't see a lot of birds flying around except for Turkey Vultures.  Saw the "first of this year" Horned Toad (photo attached) - it was small, about the size of my thumb, but active.  Lots of flowers were still in bloom, additionally, the bee brush is still in bloom and scenting the air.

An easy, relaxing hike for sure!

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett Park.

Water, shade and info kiosk available at 5 Points Junction.

South Shore Playground Parking Area to Burkett Park Loop
By MikeHikes on 6/6/2019
Rating: 3point5stars Difficulty: 1point5stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 7.10 Miles Duration: 3 hours

Out -     Playground Parking Area > Tasajilla Flats > Nature Loop > Lanky Lackey > WS to LL Connector > Burkett Park      4.0 miles

Return - Burkett Park > Winding Snake > Chaparral > Playground Parking Area     3.1 miles

Temp started at 65, ended at 73.  Sunny, few clouds, slight breeze.

Despite some rain earlier in the morning, I decided to hike.  The trails were very muddy or at best, merely wet.  Because of all the recent rains, the vegetation has grown a LOT!  As of this morning, Tasajilla Flats was very overgrown (photo attached) as were parts of Winding Snake. I'm sure once the ground dries out, park personnel will be assigned to groom the trails so I advise anyone planning to hike, to first check with the park personnel and get the latest trail info. 

A small group of Whitetail deer were spotted and I saw a pair of Yellow Billed Cuckoos, the first seen in a few years.  There are still wildflowers and bee brush in bloom although I didn't see any cactus flowers at all.  Surprising to me, there were few mosquitoes out.  One more piece of good news - I saw no trash on the trails!!

Although it was not the best of hikes, it was better than sitting at home.

NOTES

Water, shade, info kiosk and toilets available at Playground Parking Area.

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at Burkett Park.

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