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Good all around hike

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User: westtexas - 3/18/2009

Location: Good Water Trail

Rating:
Difficulty:  Solitude:
Miles Hiked: 23.00 Miles  Elapsed Time: 13 hours

Comments:

We did the majority of the complete loop this past weekend, March 14-15 '09.    We started at Cedar Breaks and worked clockwise, although in the future I'd probably reverse that and go counter-clockwise, getting the few miles of paved road and dam out of the way first.    Due to a late start on Saturday, combined with a variety of stops to view scenery, etc. we started to worry about getting over to Walnut Springs in time to set up camp in the daylight.  It was a 15 mile stretch from Cedar Breaks to Walnut Springs, and for a trio of 40+ year old backpackers in questionable shape, it was a little much.   To ensure we'd make it in time to Walnut Springs, we opted to take the old Hunt low-water concrete crossing bridge instead of going all the way to the Tejas crossing, saving a little over 3 miles.  Thus the reason for me posting that we did 23 miles of a 26 mile loop.  The Hunt crossing was high and dry, and the river / lake is so low that we could have actually crossed a mile or so before even the Hunt crossing.   We ended up at Walnut Springs around 5pm, and thanks to the recent rains, the burn ban had been lifted for the weekend allowing us to have a campfire.  The following day we headed out of Walnut Springs, stopping at Russell Park to fill up on water.  The hiking was nice with the cooler weather, although it was overcast and misting rain off and on.  But the pain was the muddy trail, and the gumbo mud collected quickly on your boots forcing you to frequently clean them off or suffer what felt like was lugging an extra 10 pounds on each foot.    As noted earlier, when you're already tired, finishing off the trail with a 2 mile hike across the dam and then paved roads (uphill) isn't the most pleasant of endings, so in the future we'll go the other way.   Also, unless you're just a gung-ho speed hiker, and instead want to enjoy the hike, I'd probably break it up into a  3 day outing with shorter hikes.  Plus I'd go when the trail is a little dryer.   All in all, great scenery and decent solitude (we saw only a couple of groups on the trail and one group near us at the Walnut Springs Camp).   We'll definitely do this one again!  Long loops are rare in Texas!



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