Tucked away in Canyon, Texas, the Palo Duro Canyon Trails offer a sprawling 26-mile network of singletrack that beckons to mountain bikers from far and wide. With a range of features from dirt and rocks to river rock and wash-outs, these trails promise an all-encompassing biking experience for all skill levels. As a result, avid mountain bikers find themselves driving hours just to feel the exhilarating rush of these unique trails.
Not to be underestimated, the Palo Duro Canyon has often been likened to a "mini Grand Canyon" in the heart of Texas. Situated to the south of Amarillo on Highway 27, it’s fairly easy to locate. Simply exit onto 217 in Canyon and follow the signs to the state park. Once inside, traverse past three water crossings to find ample parking near the trailheads.
The trails cater to a diverse spectrum of riders. For the less experienced, the Juniper River, Sunflower, and Paseo Del Rio trails offer relatively flat terrains and easy climbs. For more of a challenge, more seasoned riders can tackle the Rock Garden or GSL trails, both of which offer steep climbs and technical descents.
If you are someone who appreciates the view as much as the ride, then Palo Duro won’t disappoint. The sun setting off the canyon walls is a spectacle in itself. Add to that the various geological features that line your path, and it’s not just your endorphins that will be soaring. However, caution is advised; the summer heat can reach scorching levels, so hydration packs are highly recommended.
The well-maintained condition of the trails is a tribute to the Palo Duro Corp Engineers. All trails are mapped and marked with clear signage. While the trails are frequented by bikers year-round, they also offer excellent conditions for night riding. Camping facilities and bike racks near the lighthouse overlook add to the convenience factor.
The trails are so well-regarded that they host a 24-hour race each year to raise money for cancer research. Locals and visitors alike rave about the fantastic variety the trail system has to offer. Moreover, the vicinity to nearby stores like Wal-Mart and various RV and tent sites make it a practical choice for weekend warriors or long-haul bikers.
In summary, the Palo Duro Canyon Trails offer an intricate network for cyclists craving a mix of scenery and skill challenges. Whether you’re looking to beat your personal record or just enjoy a casual day on the trails, Palo Duro has something for everyone. So, pack up those bikes and set your GPS to Canyon, Texas. The trails are calling.