Big Thicket - Turkey Creek Trail

Trail
15.00 Miles
N/A
Free
3stars (3.00)11
2stars (2.00)
3point5stars (3.95)
N/A
No
Yes
N/A
Livingston
Hardin
More Info
Photos
View Of The Trail
There are numerous boardwalks to help you walk over the low-lying wet areas. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Nice Rest Areas
There are some nice rest benches along Turkey Creek. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Nice Shaded Areas
Many parts of the trail provide a lot of shade. (Photo by Lone_Star)
May Apples
These little umbrella plants are called may apples. Very cool little plant! (Photo by Lone_Star)
Knees
These strange looking growth formations coming up out of the water are the "knees" of the bald cypress trees. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Sandhill Loop
The trail was well-maintained and, like the Kirby Nature Trail, had some educational placards along the trail. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Good Signage In The Sandhill Loop Area
These signs provided a small map and directions. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Fallen Trees
There were several fallen trees blocking the trail as well as a few widowmakers. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Trailhead
This is the trailhead off Gore Store Road. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Trail Sign
This is the sign off Gore Store Road. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Caterpillars
These are not processionary caterpillars, but they had a nice little procession going... kind of like a group hike! :) (Photo by Lone_Star)
Lizard
Notice how this species of lizard has evolved to exactly match the color of the surrounding foliage in the background. Amazing! (Photo by Lone_Star)

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Log Entries
Gore Store Road To Kirby Nature Trail & Back
By Lone_Star on 4/24/2013
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 10.31 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 54 minutes

This is my second log of the Turkey Creek Trail and covers the section from Gore Store Road to the Kirby Nature Trail outer loop.  It also includes the Sandhill Loop.

The Sandhill Loop was very well-maintained and the signage in this area was good, but the Turkey Creek Trail was a different story.  There were a lot of fallen trees and sporadic direction markers.  The distance markers were non-existent.  Some fallen trees you could walk over or around, but others completely blocked the trail and forced you to bushwhack.

The trail does afford you some great views of Turkey Creek, however.

 

Hwy 1943 To Gore Store Road & Back
By Lone_Star on 4/23/2013
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 19.13 Miles Duration: 7 hours, 7 minutes

Note:  This log covers both the Turkey Creek Trail (from Hwy 1943 to Gore Store Road) and the Pitcher Plant Trail.

The Turkey Creek trail is a long, winding, primitive, linear trail that runs parallel to and along Turkey Creek.  It reminded me of the Lone Star Hiking Trail, only the trees were not blazed.

Along the way, you can take a fork to the Pitcher Plant Trail (which can be hiked separately if you access the trail from Pin Oak Road).  Whether you hike the Pitcher Plant Trail separately or in conjunction with the Turkey Creek Trail, I highly recommend you hike the Pitcher Plant Trail.  They are really cool, alien-looking plants, and the Pitcher Plant trail will take you to an area where there are gazillions of them.

The Turkey Creek Trail is a good, flat distance hike, but the trail was not very well-maintained.  There were several fallen trees blocking the trail and a few widowmakers leaning over the trail.

The signage is OK, but not great.  For example, I saw mile marker posts, but only the 4, 6, 7, and 8 mile posts.  The others were missing or not visible.  Also, sometimes the trail joins and proceeds along a utility right of way path or dirt road and there are signs pointing to where the trail branches off, but at other times there are no signs.  This causes a little confusion and increases the chance of making a wrong turn.

You can camp for free in the Big Thicket, but you have to get a Backcountry Use Permit at the Visitors Center.  Also, be advised that camping is primitive.  There are no campgrounds, campsites, water or electrical hookups.  You just pitch your tent under the stars.

The Turkey Creek Trail took me two days to complete.  Consequently, this log will be followed by my log of the southern portion of Turkey Creek Trail (from Gore Store Road to the Kirby Nature Trail) and Sandhill Loop.

The further you go into the trail, the better it is
By ee_achee on 4/16/2011
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1point5stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Started at 4:50 pm on the northern side to Turkey creek trailhead at FM1943. Passed the 3 mile pole and continue onto Pitcher Plant trail. Return via the same route. Completed by 7.20 pm.

Shakedown hike before trip to Colorado
By TrailShoe on 6/24/2006
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 7.50 Miles Duration: N/A
On every hike there has been an abundance of flowering trees and plants. Each time there is something different over period of a couple of weeks.
Hike from Hester Bridge Road to North Trail Head
By TrailShoe on 6/11/2006
Rating: 3point5stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 6.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Nice hike, we hiked 6 miles in about 4.5 hours.
Gore Store Road to Hester Bridge Road
By TrailShoe on 6/4/2006
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 6.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Nice morning for a hike. Had a puppy hanging around start area that walked with me up and back. 6 miles. Lots of flowering plants and a few squirrels near Hester Bridge Road.
Good Hike
By TrailShoe on 6/4/2006
Rating: 3point5stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 6.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Hiked from Gore Store Road to Hester Bridge Road. Good hike, only 3 miles one way, but be aware no potable water available along trail where we hiked, but creek is available for purification/filtering at Hester Bridge Road after about 3 miles in from Gore Store Road.
Kirby Nature Trail
By TrailShoe on 6/3/2006
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 5.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Hike along Cypress loop was impressive. Never saw Cypress trees that big. We also hiked out to the SandHill Loop. Quite a contrast to the Kirby Nature Trail. Good afternoon hike.
By bern0416 on 4/22/2006
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: halfstar Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 17.50 Miles Duration: N/A
Decent length and close to houston
By wildhog06 on 2/19/2006
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: halfstar Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 17.50 Miles Duration: N/A
Outfitter in Kountze dropped off at N end of trail. Camped at halfway point. No campfires allowed! Little wildlife seen. Needed compass to navigate S when intersecting loop trails (not marked extremely well). When along creek the scenery was more interesting.

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