Thursday, July 6, 2017

Vacation 2017, Palo Duro Canyon State Park, Canyon, TX

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro is the home to the second largest canyon in the country located southeast of Amarillo, Texas. It was a bit surprising after traveling through relatively flat farm land and coming to the 1,000 foot vertical walls of this canyon that is over a 100 miles in length. The park road descends into the canyon along a steep 10 percent grade road to the canyon floor where several campsites are located. There is electric, water, shower facilities and bathrooms. July is a hot month for the canyon with highs approaching a hundred degrees every day. Thank God it is dry heat however you have to be careful and carry water during your day hikes to keep hydrated. We mostly did our short hikes in the morning when it was cooler. This is a beautiful park surrounded by lovely rock formations and colorful cliffs that surround you on all sides. It is also home to the play Texas which is given every night in the summer at the parks extensive amphitheater that is built to accommodate hundreds of people. The play is a wonderful musical that depicts the history of this area of Texas from the very early days of pioneering with families that settled near this special place in northwest Texas. Many of the scenes had horses, well built sets and fireworks that added to drama of the play. Very worth seeing if you are visiting this lovely canyon park.   

Our campsite at Palo Duro Canyon State Park
Day Hike on one of the many trails in the park

View from down in the canyon
Colorful Rock formations everywhere you look

Visitors Center at Palo Duro

View from the Visitor Center at Palo Duro
The Amphitheater at Palo Duro 
Seating for the play Texas that 4,000,000 people have seen over the years
Cave in the cliffs with a cool interior to hide from the summer sun
One of the many wild flowers on the meadow trails in the park
 One of the many rustic cabins built by the CCC in the 1930's available for rent in the park