PK State Park staff (at left) Cathy Campbell and Kim Bennett led this group of eager hikers on the First Day Hike in 2023. ( Photo from PK State Park)

2023 First Day Hikes at Possum Kingdom

Caty Campbell with Possum Kingdom State Park reported that 11 people joined the tradition of taking a hike in the park on the first day of the new year. Eleven people mainly from the Metroplex, one from Big Spring, and Cathy’s daughter Raven hiked the Lakeview and Longhorn Trails for a total of 2.2 miles. Some participants grew up on the lake, but one of them had never been to the park. There were also seven self-guided hiking groups with a total of 25 who stopped by the park office to report their hike.  Almost 60 miles was hiked by the total number of participants. HEB stores donated sample bags to the hikers and the park gave out stickers that said “Ask me about my first day hike.” It was a perfect day for a hike with sunny skies and a temperature of 77° F in January!

One the other side of the lake parking lots at the major trailheads to the PK Hike & Bike Trail were full as families and friends took advantage of the weather to take a first day hike on trails having scenic lookouts with views of Hell’s Gate, the cliffs, and canyons making up Possum Kingdom Lake. Boat ramps were busy with boats entering and leaving the water.

I chose a lesser used trail to enjoy the sunshine and intermittent quiet observing active insects, spiders, and a healthy white-tailed buck with smooth antlers that dashed across the trail when he caught sight of me. The fresh smell of Mountain Cedar filled the air. Thank goodness pollen from the male trees had not yet begun to pop announcing the beginning of “Cedar Fever” season. This first day hike will be one of the many hikes I will take during the whole year.

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