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Colorado Bend State Park

March 24, 2010

On a bright and crisp spring day Joe and I, along with my sister and her husband, headed out to Colorado Bend State Park. Joe and I have been here with the kids many times over the past years; it is one of our favorite parks. Each season lends its own beauty to the area, and this trip we decided to do some hiking.

Exploring along the Colorado River

Exploring along the Colorado River

Our first hike was to Spicewood Spring, located of course on Spicewood Trail. We hiked .5 miles to where the spring was located. Along the river we watched as hawks soared high overhead. The spring was absolutely lovely! Being mid March (it just so happened to be the first day of spring) the foliage was not as thick, allowing us the opportunity to venture off the beaten path. We explored along the south side of the spring where we jumped from pool to pool, eventually ending up on the bank of the spring’s creek, where we rested and took in the tranquil surroundings. All four of us enjoyed the quiet solitude, the only sound being birds singing and the water cascading over boulders and down into other pools further down the trail.

After some time of relaxation and small talk, we reluctantly rose from our restful positions. Since none of us had seen Gorman Falls before, we returned to the trailhead to explore another area. Driving back up the never ending gravel road, we parked at the trailhead to Gorman Falls Trail.

Gorman Falls at Colorado Bend State Park

Gorman Falls at Colorado Bend State Park

The trail was a little over 2 miles round trip. Taking our time and enjoying each other’s company, we walked along the well marked path. The terrain was not too difficult and fairly level for most of the hike. As we came closer to the falls we could hear the loud roaring of water in the distance. Coming down a rocky incline to a viewing area, the magnificent sight of the falls was unexpected. I never would have imagined falls of this grandeur and beauty being located among the surrounding cactus and cedar. Lush fern-like vegetation grew among the falls, and a little rainbow could be seen in the spraying mist. At the base of the 60 foot waterfall, the water formed clear, sparkling pools before running into the Colorado River. What an amazing sight!

Since it was early spring, there was little vegetation in our viewing path. We were able to see the falls from many angles without tree limbs obstructing the view.

Be prepared-the unimproved gravel road seems to go on forreevvver, but it is only 1.5 miles.

There are many campsites scattered along the Colorado River which have picnic tables, a fire ring with cooking grill, and composting toilets nearby. The park can get full, and if you are camping, reservations must be made well in advance. We had the place practically to ourselves. One reason might have been because it was the last day of spring break, and many campers had left to go home early. Another reason could have been the large amount of rain we had received the previous day.

We did observe some young parents trying to push a stroller-I wouldn’t advise this! Also, once you get to the falls, the terrain is somewhat steep, making it a little dangerous for small ones. Check with the Ranger if you have any questions about the trail.

There are also caves to tour; check their website for times and fees.

I suggest bringing a blanket and picnic with you. There are many splendid places along the trails to enjoy a meal (carry water in the hot summer).

Joe and Me at Gorman Falls

Joe and me at Gorman Falls

Happy Hiking!

~Karin~

View more photos at flickr.com

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