nature, Opt Outside in Texas, Travel & Tourism, U.S. Destinations

Lost Maples State Natural Area

One brisk day during our first Texas autumn, I woke up early, packed up my son and our dog, and drove an hour and a half west to Lost Maples State Natural Area. It was so beautiful and peaceful. We got there very early so there weren’t a lot of people. The leaves smelled amazing, the air was fresh, and we got our exercise in.

My hiking buddies 💜
I did not realize beforehand that would end up traversing what felt like a small mountain – Mama got her workout in that day 💪

Lost Maples is an important wildlife and natural habitat. It “protects a special stand of Uvalde bigtooth maples” and is home to the endangered golden-cheeked warbler.(1) In 1988, a refuge population of Guadalupe bass was established in the Sabinal River in the park to encourage reproduction and try to restore the bass to its former numbers after it was determined that cross-breeding between the Guadalupe bass and smallmouth bass created a hybrid fish and almost eradicated the pure Guadalupe bass.(2)

Scroll down to view more photos from our hike. If you decide to visit, I highly recommend making a day pass reservation so that you have a confirmed parking spot!

To learn more about Lost Maples and explore Texas’s other state park destinations, visit the Texas Parks & Wildlife Lost Maples page.

For more details about the Uvalde bigtooth maple, visit their page on the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center website.

References

  1. Texas Parks & Wildlife. Accessed 23 July 2020. https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/lost-maples
  2. Fry Cortez, D. March 2018. Accessed 13 July 2020. https://tpwmagazine.com/archive/2018/mar/ed_3_bass/index.phtml

About the Writer

A Beautiful Beginning

Welcome to Oak + River Books! I am honored to be a part of your journey. Browse the Q&A below to learn more about what Oak + River Books means to me.

What is Oak + River Books? This blog is a creative space to explore literature with a special emphasis on nature and the outdoors. Through book reviews, interesting articles, photos (and maybe the occasional poem), I will reveal my ideas on the importance of literature and nature.

What do you want to accomplish with this blog? During this journey, I want to explore concepts relating to nature and its effects on individuals, families, and communities; everyone is welcome to enter and interact with an open mind. I hope that readers will take away ideas to ponder or research on their own. I encourage respectful and constructive dialogue.

Who do you want to connect with? Readers of Oak + River will be a combination of bibliophiles and nature-seekers. I am about to start a Master’s program in recreation management and anticipate some of the things I learn will reflect here. With that in mind, I think this community will have an appetite for knowledge and knowledge-sharing, but I also want it to be a space for individuals at any level of interest in these areas.

Why “Oak + River”? I wanted a title that made me feel like I was taking a breath of fresh air. The oak is sturdy and mighty; it is consistency and dedication. The river is fluid and ever-changing; water has the power to soothe. I recently learned of a grounding technique that involves putting your hands under alternating cold and warm water, with the intent of paying attention to the different sensations on your skin. Being near water and being in the woods always brings me a sense of peace; I want to evoke that sense of calm and intention with Oak + River Books.

Anything else? Firstly, I welcome constructive feedback as I begin the blogging process. Secondly, I want everyone to feel like they belong here. We are all connected. The more we learn about ourselves and each other, the more we are able to help one another. The world gets us down sometimes and I will do my best to keep this a place of positivity.