It’s official! We’re in a new year and the first month of that new year has already flown by. Well, at least it has for us here at Caprock Canyons State Park. Winter was most often a time when we took a small pause to reflect on the previous year and brainstorm ways to make the next one better. However, we have learned to adapt and overcome much like the hardy plants and animals who call such an extreme landscape and climate here at Caprock Canyons home. They all must be resilient and that’s just what we’ve learned from the past year. Our visitation has now reached a time when even winter is steady. Even in the midst of some hard times, visitation here at Caprock hasn’t slowed. In fact, it’s only increased! If there’s anything that last year taught us despite it’s uncertainty, it was resiliency and adaptation. We’ve now adapted to a changing visitation and with it changes to our regular park operations and safety measures. Caprock Canyons State Park is encouraging visitors to observe the 6ft. social distancing requirements. Visitors are also encouraged to wear facial coverings in all public buildings. In addition to regular park maintenance, park staff is also cleaning and sanitizing these public buildings twice daily.
Such an increase in visitation deserves some stats to back it up! Caprock Canyons State Park has seen an approximate average of 7,500 visitors per month which equates to 10,000 visitors over average! That’s 30,000 visitors from just the months of September through December of 2020 and there’s definitely no signs of it slowing down now. In fact, it’s probable that it will only increase with the mild temperatures and exciting new beginnings of Spring on the horizon. What’s the driving force behind this? Many new users to the park are discovering the benefits of the beautiful and amazing resources of CCSP. So with that being said, be sure and check out our Ranger Recommendation below!
The first day of the new year saw many people getting outside on First Day Hikes! Although our First Day Hike was a little different than previous years, many people braved the cold conditions to enjoy a trail in the park on the first day of the new year. To help users better understand the amazing outdoor benefits that the park offers, we put together an online guide as a resource to help First Day Hikers make the most of their hiking experience. In addition, First Day Hiking participants tagged the park and used the #First Day Hike and #Caprockexperience on social media. Afterall, every time you come to Caprock, it’s an experience and we want you to share those amazing experiences with us and others!
Despite being dry and without much moisture, the park has seen some snowfall in the past month! Although the snowfall hasn’t amounted to much ground moisture, snowfall on the caprock can sure make a person have some moisture in the eye area with it’s astounding white beauty contrasted by the deep red of the canyons. Seeing the Texas State Bison Herd in the snow doesn’t help matters much either! 🙂 Here’s a few of our favorites!
What to See & Do This Month: Plan Ahead!
As we’ve already discussed, Caprock Canyons is experiencing an uptick in visitation. We also encourage making reservations for both day use and camping prior to your arrival. With spring on the way, we suggest making your plans as far out in advance as you can!
This recommendation comes to you from the staff in the park office: Did you know you can make reservations as far out in advance as 5 months? Reservations can be made by going online or you can call Central Reservations at (512)389-8900. At the park’s level, we can make reservations for you only on the date of your arrival. However, if you wait until the day of your arrival, we may not have any available campsites. Our reservation website also allows you to pick which individual campsite you’d like to stay at. So, if you prefer a certain one, don’t wait! Secure your campsite as soon as you can in advance! Not sure which particular campsite will best suit your needs? Don’t worry, we’ll be glad to assist you in answering your questions or providing you with needed advice. Just give us a call at (806)455-1492. Additionally, did you know you can view each individual campsite in the park on the online reservations website? You can visit the website at www.texasstateparks.org and then click on “make reservations online”.
Pic of the Month:
Here’s another pic during one of the snowfalls from last month. It’s probably our favorite although, how can we pick just one!!!?
Oh alright!!!!…… Here’s a closeup! 🙂 Can’t you tell we have way too much fun out here!?
Quote of the Month:
“Time flies by when you’re having fun!”~Unknown
Alluding to my first statement in this month’s blog, last month has already come and gone. It seems so strange to know how fast time can fly by. Like the sandhill crane or the winter water fowl, one day we will look up and it’s already flown by! Did we simply miss it or were we really just not paying attention? Sometimes, we should not only give our attention to the “big things”, but the “little things” deserve our attention too. How long has it been since you really noticed some of those “little things”? My 8 year old daughter recently discovered the somewhat overlooked but equally beautiful western meadowlark. One was sitting atop the fencepost by our house when she excitedly told me of how pretty she thought it was. Her description of it was like an exotic bird that you only read about in books. So, it came as a surprise when I looked out the window to somehow “discover” the bird for myself. When I saw the common bird in question, I smiled to myself but then took a pause to reflect on how she described it. And she was right! This common bird of the Texas Panhandle brought to light for me all of its beauty. Never before had I stopped to realize indeed, just how beautiful of a bird it truly was! Later that day, we were in a hurry to arrive to an event on time, but before I shut the car door to leave, I heard the fluty voice of the meadowlark and a little girl’s voice say, “See, it even sings pretty too!” And suddenly, I really wasn’t in that much of a hurry anymore and I wanted to hear it again. That western meadowlark was a reminder for me to take the time to stop and notice some things. I hope you will too. And, while it’s not a large bison covered in snow, every time I see a western meadowlark, I’ll be sure to pay attention.