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Old 09-20-2016, 08:51 PM   #1
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Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Heading there on Monday. Supposed to cool off next week. Any suggestions? We were there years ago, but only for the day and did not spend the night in the park. I've read a lot of reviews on the park and 2 recurring comments are dirty showers and lots of flies. Sounds very attractive. Anyone been there recently that can add some insight? Planning to be there Mon-Fri.
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Old 09-20-2016, 09:08 PM   #2
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Greetings, we were there in March 2015. Its a beautiful place and I thought it was reasonably well maintained. I don't remember the showers specifically but I think they were less than steaming hot. We had a little teardrop at the time and the showers were adequate. The hiking was great. There is also an RV dealer in Amarillo (Jack Sisemore Traveland) that has an RV museum which was fun. There is also an art museum in Amarillo that we enjoyed. there were no flies in March. I think you will have a good time.
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Old 10-02-2016, 12:35 PM   #3
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Just returned from our trip to Palo Duro Canyon State Park and we had a great time. Weather was beautiful the whole time. We did visit the RV Museum in Amarillo and it was fun. They have one of the Wally Byam Caravan trailers on display and several other early Airstreams, along with antique motor homes, trailers and motorcycles. I visited an old college friend that practices dentistry in Canyon. Hadn't seen him in almost 40 years.
Found that we can go 3 days before needing a dump station. There are 3 in the park.
We hiked to the Lighthouse (6 miles round trip) and my bad knee did not enjoy the last mile or so! That knee replacement looks more and more likely.
The AS was flawless with the exception one one lost rivet in the bath.
The flies we somewhat of a nuisance. We were warned about snakes but didn't see any. Came face to face with a roadrunner at the Lighthouse. I don't know who was the more surprised.
Can't wait to go back.
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Old 10-02-2016, 03:07 PM   #4
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Traveled there in December 2012 with my daughter. We had a Casita then. It was very windy the day we arrived as a front was coming through. Got down to 18F that night but the next couple of days were sunny reaching into the upper 60s. We hike to the Lighthouse. The campgrounds were empty but for a few. The campground host at the Hackberry Campground, where we camped, had an Airstream. I had no idea at the time we would be owners of an Airstream. Since it was almost officially winter there were no bugs. The restrooms were clean enough, up to the typical Texas State Park standards, and we used the showers.

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Old 10-02-2016, 04:43 PM   #5
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The jeep tour into the canyon right before the entrance was great
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Old 10-02-2016, 06:49 PM   #6
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Visited Palo Dura Canyon and was not overly impressed. Spent a couple days there. Campground was OK, but after having been to a lot of the National Parks, for me, I find no reason to drive through miles and miles of nothing Texas to see Palo Dura again.


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Old 10-02-2016, 07:31 PM   #7
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Palo Duro is our *go-to* park whenever we cross No. TX. Hackberry is the campground to choose. The canyon walks are wonderful. The museum in Canyon is worth a visit. We love the turkeys. It's a destination park for those of us who love to get away.
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Old 10-02-2016, 07:34 PM   #8
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We camped there for 3 nights last December. I think it is worth a visit. The canyon is beautiful, and the hiking is great. The campground itself is OK if a little overpriced for what you get. The staff is brusk.
There is a lot of history there. The reign of the Comanches came to an end in the Battle of Palo Duro Canyon in 1874. I would go again.
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Old 10-02-2016, 07:42 PM   #9
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It is worth a visit during the summer when the play is running at the amphitheater. Very patriotic and worth seeing. Very good production by student actors.
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Old 10-02-2016, 08:17 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tsunami View Post
Visited Palo Dura Canyon and was not overly impressed. Spent a couple days there. Campground was OK, but after having been to a lot of the National Parks, for me, I find no reason to drive through miles and miles of nothing Texas to see Palo Dura again.
"Nothing" Texas. Them's fightin' words! How much of the state have you actually seen? (We're long-term Texans, not natives. Been here long enough that we've become attached. I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder. )

Palo Duro looks interesting to us, and we actually like empty campgrounds. But here's what we really want to know. What are the night skies like? We're interested in star gazing and astrophotography.
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Old 10-02-2016, 08:32 PM   #11
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A good friend of mine always said he was an American by birth, and a Texan by the grace of God.

Yup, a native.


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Old 10-02-2016, 08:50 PM   #12
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We also just got back from Palo Duro. We did the Lighthouse hike also, only to the official "end of trail" point, though most people seemed to go farther.

We found the flies bothersome in the evening, enough to drive us inside halfway through dinner our first night there.

We saw several roadrunners and turkeys. Two Great Horned Owls flew overhead at dusk near the Juniper loop campground, and we heard a third one. Saw a small handful of birds on the Lighthouse hike, we were hoping for better birding there. Saw two snakes crossing roads in the park, could not identify them.

We also visited the Sisemore RV museum. Very enjoyable. Recommended.

We visited the Texas Air and Space Museum. We got a free personally guided tour which was nice, but the collection itself is pretty small.

We also spent two nights at Fritch Fortress in the Lake Meredith National Recreation Area, which is north of Amarillo. Free camping, no hookups, great sunset views. Went to Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument and got the free tour (call ahead for reservations during the busy times, and to find out if/when the tour will be given during the slow season). We found the Flint Quarries quite interesting. Recommended.

Starstream: The night skies are pretty dark. The campgrounds are all at the bottom of the canyon, so the canyon rim limits your view of the horizon, but I think it is a good place for star gazing.

As for the Airstream, the water inlet was leaking so we had to run off the fresh tank, the kitchen sink was leaking, the air conditioner broke, and one of our Goodyear Marathons slipped a belt. But my new water leak alarm worked!
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Old 10-02-2016, 09:33 PM   #13
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I am not a stargazer, but our camp host last week is an avid one. He had a 16" telescope sitting in front of his site that he looked like he was working on. We stopped to ask about it and he said he was about to disassemble it because they had been there a month and were leaving the following day. He had built the telescope in 1998-it looked new. He asked if we wanted to look at the sun and, of course, we did. He changed out some pieces of the telescope and we could actually look at sun flares. He said they were 25,000-30,000 miles high! Then he changed out some more parts and we looked at sun spots. And then at the moon!
We knew he had lots to do so we thanked him for the time and let him finish packing.
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Old 10-02-2016, 09:38 PM   #14
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Tsunami:
I AM a native Texan and if you are going to criticize Palo Duro Canyon why not, at least, learn how to spell it?
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