Winter has its share of mild, sunny days. Though it may be a little too cool for boating, a great way to spend time out of doors is by enjoying the beautiful scenery at the Brazos River Authority’s Possum Kingdom Lake Hike and Bike Trails.
Possum Kingdom Lake’s breathtaking natural beauty is the perfect setting for the 16 miles of winding trails. Designed for both beginning hikers as well as those who are more experienced, the trail system may be accessed via 12 trailheads, allowing hikers to make their experience as long or as short as they’d like.
Recognized for their excellence by the Texas Trail Head Network and named among the top 10 trails in Texas by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the trails are located centrally to the reservoir on PK’s peninsula. Sandy Beach, Bug Beach, Scenic Cove, South D&D and North D&D parks are linked by trails, providing camping, swimming and playground opportunities as a welcome break from the hike.
Water fountains and restrooms are located at many the trailheads and each park area but are not available on the trails themselves. Visitors should bring your own drinking water. There are several areas with cedar benches located on the trails that offer a chance to rest and enjoy the surrounding beauty.
Be on the lookout for plentiful wildlife when walking or riding the trails. Among the animals sighted most often are whitetail deer, turkeys, raccoons, opossums, foxes, wild birds and various snakes and lizards, according to Robert Box, Lake Ranger Sergeant at Possum Kingdom Lake.
Maps are posted to help those hiking and biking to be aware of their location on the trails. Also posted throughout the trails are displays that offer information on local history, geology and wildlife.
Though the trails are popular with mountain biking enthusiasts, hiking is more popular than biking along the trail, according to Sergeant Box. Slopes average between 5 and 20 degrees with five-foot wide paths that meander among native trees and brush.
Scenic beauty is a great payoff for the exercise involved. A visit to Johnson Peak offers breathtaking views of the lake, along with a scenic rest area. Both sides of the lake can be seen from this vantage point.
Dogs are welcome to join their owners at PK; however, they must remain on a leash while on the trails. Proof of a current rabies vaccine must also be available. Dogs are not allowed in public swim areas, but they are welcome in camping areas.
Because of wildlife and rugged terrain, those walking or riding should not wander off of the trails for their own safety. Motorized vehicles are not allowed on the trails, and alcohol is prohibited.
The trails host several events throughout the year, ranging from endurance runs and triathlons to walks and volksmarches (non-competitive hikes which are open to everyone).
More information about PK trails, including a map, is available online here.