Sunrise was gorgeous this morning but a bit cool. After pancakes, peppered bacon, and a full pot of coffee, we headed for the state park. Our destination was Cinco Tenahas.
The road was as rough as we remembered and we skittered and slid along the gravel and sand. We met a concrete truck along the way and noted that there were small droppings of concrete along the road in the oddest places. We decided it must be the truck off-loading a bit at a time—it looked like skat. We surprised several road-runners along the way as well as a coyote who ran for his life.
The trail to the Cinco Tenahas was well-marked with rock cairns. At the top of the Bofecilla vista, Glen decided he would walk down to the stream and walk back up toward the truck. My knee was complaining at this point and I decided to reverse my path. At the stream bed though I walked downstream; Glen had found a huge rock blocking his path and had also retreated along the original trail. Together we made our way down to the first teneha. The water here was crystal clear with a small bit of green pond scum around the edges. Rock fences marked part of the pathway and we both wondered at the tenacity of ranch-hands to work so hard at moving rocks.
Our next stop was Ojito Adentro. We had passed the roadside sign on the way to Cinco Tenahas and thought it might make for an interesting hike. The path was nearly straight down-hill but easily negotiated. An old road led straight up the hill; cattle droppings marked the path. A row of cottonwoods was at the base of the hill and we followed a rocky path through the cottonwoods for several hundred yards. A few small cairns marked the path along with some arrows glued onto rock faces.
Ojito Adentro is easily one of the most beautiful spots I have ever seen. A large rock face covered with ferns and dripping water pools into several small reflecting pools at the base of the rock. Small yellow butterflies danced amongst the ferns while the cottonwood tree leaves rustled. It was incredibly enchanting and almost too beautiful to seem real.
Our drive out of the state park was marked by meeting several vehicles but none in any of the awkwardly narrow or soft gravel spots. We had noted a sign for Close Canyon on the way to the park and since we still had an hour or so of daylight we decided to take one last hike.
Close Canyon is very narrow with just bits of sunlight reaching the base of the canyon floor. Rocks littered the bottom of the floor making us wonder if we should have worn our motorcycle helmets. Like much of Big Bend it is hard to take photos that show the scale.
Supper was Terlingua Toothpicks (deep-fried onions and jalapeno strips) and Terlingua Trio Barbecue at La Kiva. Tomorrow is our last day here.
More photos are here: