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2020-04-15  
Clarity Tunnel Loop, TX
mini location map2020-04-15
24 by photographer avatarmarkthurman53
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Clarity Tunnel Loop, TX 
Clarity Tunnel Loop, TX
 
Hiking avatar Apr 15 2020
markthurman53
Hiking4.86 Miles 236 AEG
Hiking4.86 Miles   1 Hour   58 Mns   2.49 mph
236 ft AEG      1 Min Break10 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
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I only had a few options for hiking in Texas since the state closed all state parks, even to hiking and there is very little national forest or BLM land in Texas. I went back to Clarity Tunnel along the old Fort Worth & Denver Railway which is part of the Caprock Park Trailways. Rather than walk along the railway itself which is a 3.5 mile one way to the tunnel, I took a shorter route. This route does involve crossing private property though (ranch Land). I figured I could plead I'm lost if I don't get shot or strung up first. This route makes the hike to the tunnels about a half a mile. This tunnel is a must see if you are ever in the area. Constructed all out of timber, the workmanship is something. This tunnel is also home to the Mexican Free Tail Bat. Didn't see any bats but in the tunnel you can hear them.

Quitaque Creek (Hackberry Creek) was running pretty good, enough so as to make crossing without betting your feet wet a small challenge (no rocks just tufts of grass). The side canyon, Turkey creek, had a little water in sections. There was a small showing of flowers but not impressive (no Blue Bonnets/Lupine).

On the return trip I went back a different route, continued on down the track for about a mile then cross country back to the road. This route not only changed my section of Private property crossing but also took us past 4 silos that were used to hold gravel that was mined in this area. There use to be a spur track that went to the silos and was used to load gravel onto the trains. On my last trip here I only saw the silos from a distance. We returned to the Jeep along a county road.

I recommend doing this hike from Monk's Crossing along Hwy 689, adds about 6 miles round trip to the hike but you don;t have to cross private property. The other option is to contact the rancher to gain access to the land.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Hackberry Creek Medium flow Medium flow

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Turkey Creek Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
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