Caprock Canyons State Park & Trailway is one of the largest and most diverse state parks in Texas. It’s certainly one of my favorite parks, even though it’s a nine hour drive from Sugar Land. The park lies about 100 miles southeast of Amarillo and about 100 miles northeast of Lubbock at the far edge of the Llano Estacado where it drops to form the Caprock Escarpment.
Streams running east from the Llano Estacado flow onto the lower plains through the Caprock Escarpment, then into the Red River, the Brazos River and the mighty Colorado River. Over thousands of years, the waters of the Little Red River have exposed the different geologic layers (“red beds”) of shale, sandstone, siltstone and mudstone. Each layer exposed by this weathering contains different colors of rock including the beautiful shades of red, orange and white you can see in the shots below.
These steep and colorful canyons are one reason I love this area so much, but it’s the sky and the clouds that really captivate the senses. Driving through the park is a feast for the eyes but to get the best landscape shots you’ll need to grab your camera and hike to some of the parks more remote locations. Be sure to take along plenty of water. That red clay you’re walking on heats up something fierce under the hot Texas sun and doesn’t cool down until well past sunset.
Caprock Canyons State Park has more photographic opportunities in it than any other state park I’ve ever visited. I’d be willing to bet that you could spend years wandering the hiking trails and never run out of scenes to shoot. Check back with me in 20 years or so and I’ll let you know! 😉