Planning on loading up the truck or Jeep and spending some time in the Great Outdoors this summer? Lone Star 4×4 is here to help with some tips on places to go, things to do, and supplies you’ll need to bring with you in your custom 4×4.
Where to Go…
Texas boasts over 14 parks recognized by the National Park Service, each offering unique opportunities to get out and explore the Texas scenery. Here’s a couple of highlights:
Colorado Bend State Park
Encompassing over 5,328 acres, Colorado State Park offers primitive camping, hiking, caving, swimming, and wildlife.
The park boasts 15.8 miles of hiking trails and 14 miles of trails designated for both for hiking and biking.
What to Do:
- Hike up Gorman Falls, the 60-foot natural waterfall
- Kayak along the Colorado River
- Take a cave tour – there are proximately 150 wild caves located on the park
Big Bend National Park
Big Bend National Park encompasses more than 800,000 acres of land and offers over 150 miles of unpaved roads, the perfect combination for anyone interested in both camping and offroading.
At Big Bend, 100+ miles of roads are marked as “Desert Back Country” and are, in some parts, extremely primitive and great for crawling or rock climbing.
What to Do:
- Camp in one of the many campgrounds along the 118 mile river, including Chisos Basin or Cottonwood Campground, or the Rio Grande Village Area
- Hike the Window Trail
- Visit Langford Hot Springs
- Hike Emory Trail
- Take an offroad trip down the 26 mile Old Ore Road
Guadalupe Mountains National Park
Guadalupe offers extensive hiking and backpacking in one of the nation’s most pristine preserved wildernesses. The park offers 20 campgrounds with varying amenities from modern to primitive.
What to Do:
- Hike El Capitan, the signature peak of West Texas
- Visit Frijole Ranch History Museum
- Hike Guadalupe Peak Trail
What to Bring…
Offroad camping trips require special focus on self-reliance and recovery. What you’ll need to bring will depend on how far off the trail you plan on traveling.
A basic toolkit includes:
Complete Socket Set with SAE (standard) and Metric with 3/8″ and 1/2″ drives. Deep and standard sockets.
- Crescent, open end combination box wrenches SAE (standard) and Metric
- Allen Wrenches
- Torx sockets (especially if you own a Jeep)
- Standard & Phillips screwdrivers, large, medium, small.
- Large channel-lock Pliers
- Pipe wrenches – having 2 medium of these can be useful for tie-rods.
- Utility knife or razor blades
- Crescent wrenches
- A pry bar or metal pipe.
- Air Pressure Gauge
- Portable air pump
- Jumper cables
Offroad camping requires a special focus on recovery and recovery items. This could include:
- Hi-lift Jack
- Tow straps – (two or more, two inch width or wider, 20 foot or longer)
- Tree saver
- D-rings and shackles
- Winch Kit: tree strap, hi-lift jack, snatch block, pickle fork, shackle, gloves
What to Get…
Want a little more comfort when you get out on the trail? Consider investing in a Jeep camper annex like the Overlander from Smittybuilt.
For superior comfort, and to be able to leave camp behind while you’re out wheeling, consider an offroad camper like the SoCal Teardrop:
For a great list of camping and outdoor activities this summer check out Go Texas website http://gotexas.about.com/od/outdoorsintexas/tp/TXCamp.htm or the list of National Parks in Texas https://www.nps.gov/state/tx/index.htm
Check out our last blog post Where to Wheel for a list of spots for OHV parks, wheeling, and mudding.
As always, find out how Lone Star 4×4 can help outfit your ride for exploring the wilderness this summer.