7 Hours in Colorado Bend State Park

    Posted on Friday, Jun 22, 2018
    It was the beginning of spring. The week-long spring vacation had started and College Station seemed to be very empty. My friends were planning to explore the Texas gulf coast and Louisiana on an extended trip. I, on the other hand decided against travelling and planned on working to develop the problem that I wanted to address as a part of my thesis. One morning during the middle of the vacation week, a friend called to invite me on a day-trip to Colorado Bend State Park which is in the central region of Texas. Being a nature-lover, I immediately jumped at the convenient opportunity.

    On the day of the trip, I had to meet with a professor to discuss about my research. So, we started late, at around 10 AM. It was a mildly cold day with temperature wavering around 65 F. I wore a fleece sweater expecting cold weather at the park. We drove past Caldwell and Cameron before stopping for lunch at Genghis grill in Harker Heights near Killeen. There is one Genghis grill in College Station as well. I would recommend it to anyone who hasn’t tried it before. Continuing towards Colorado Bend, we passed through the last town before the park, Lampasas. Lampasas had a quaint small-town aura about it. The homes and buildings were old and the streets were completely empty. After travelling 10 miles to the west of Lampasas, the entrance to the Colorado Bend state park can be seen. It took us a total of three hours to reach the park from College Station. 

    First, we went to a camping site called Sulphur Springs which is outside the park and can be accessed by a service road from the park entrance. At the site, there were a couple of springs, walking trails along the Colorado river and some cottages to camp overnight. After spending about an hour at the springs, we headed to the park to start a hike that would take us to - arguably the best spot in Colorado Bend - the Gorman falls. The trail is called the Gorman falls trail and it is 1.5-mile long. It took us an hour and half to reach the site of the falls and we relished each moment during the hike. To my surprise, the weather was hotter than College Station and I started sweating profusely just 10 minutes into the hike. Once we reached the falls, we relaxed on the cliff beside the waterfall area. Next, we went to the central park area filled with camper tents along the Colorado river. The best thing about Colorado Bend is that it isn’t crowded and the land is unpolluted. There are lot of spots to camp, relax and take a hike. The park has a lot to offer for both short day-trips and extended stays.

    At around 8 PM in the evening, our 7-hour long sojourn in Colorado Bend State Park came to an end and we started driving back via Austin. We drove to the sixth street to get a taste of Austin’s nightlife. It was a great way to end the fruitful trip. I got back to College Station, rejuvenated with energy, and ready to face the reminder of the spring semester. If you ever get a chance to visit this beautiful Texas state park, go for it without hesitation. It is a great way to take a break from work and relax in the Nature’s lap.

    Varuneswara Panyam
    Varuneswara is a Ph.D. student in the College of Engineering studying Mechanical Engineering

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