Devils River State Natural Area - Texas

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History

Devils River State Natural Area, in Val Verde County north of Del Rio, was officially acquired in May 1988. The area's acreage is approximately 19,988.6, with 447.73 held in a trust.

The site possesses good biological diversity, and the scenic river corridor offers a rugged river experience. The archeological significance appears substantial and preserves sites similar to those lost when Lake Amistad was impounded. Archeological evidence suggests that cultural influences from the west and east met at Devils River.

Activities

The park's large size and remoteness support day hiking, primitive camping, nature study, mountain biking, and canyon tours. Access to the river (1.5 miles) is by hiking, biking, or park tour only; no vehicle access permitted. The park is a put-in point (no take out) for canoes and kayaks only (no motorized boats). Nearest take out point is about 10 miles downriver from the Park and only outfitters are allowed to take boats out on these private lands. Lake Amistad is about 32 miles downriver from the Park, no cost to take boat out there. No live bait is permitted in the park. This is a flash flood area, exercise caution. The nearest hospital is 70 miles away. Only containerized fuel fires allowed.

Tours

Visitation of archaeological pictograph sites will be permitted on a pre-approved basis only. Tour fees apply. Contact the park for times and prices. For tour arrangements, call the park.

Area Attractions

Nearby attractions include Seminole Canyon State Park and Historic Site, Kickapoo Cavern State Park, Amistad National Recreation Area, and the cities of Del Rio and Ciudad Acuña.

Facilities

There are 7 primitive campsites (vehicle accessible) available. Potable water is not available so bring your own drinking water. There are also primitive campsites by the river that are available only for canoe campers who have come down river. All tap water is unsuitable for drinking, bring your own drinking water; restroom facilities are very limited. There is a hike and bike loop trail 12 miles in length. The group dining hall contains a large kitchen area with two sinks, two ice boxes, one reach-in cooler, a gas stove, and an electric range. There is also a large conference room and dining area in this facility containing 2 eight-foot and 2 ten-foot tables, along with twenty folding chairs. Building size is approximately 1800 square feet. The bunkhouse contains 5 rooms with 2 single bunk beds per room. Mattresses are provided, although linens and pillows are not. Two restrooms with showers and lavatories are available on either side of the building. Rooms are now being rented out separately with a nightly fee plus hotel tax.

Special Conditions

This is a natural area with no picnic tables, concessions, or other amenities found in traditional state parks. All trash generated by visitor use must be carried out of the park. As with all Texas State Parks, collection of plants, rocks, firewood or materials of any kind is strictly prohibited. No ground fires are allowed; High Clearance vehicles vehicles with 8 ply rating minimum (to prevent flats and blowouts) recommended. Nearest service station is 25 miles away and is not open all the time. The nearest full service station is 65 miles away.

There is no Access to Dolan Falls from the park. Access to Dolan Falls is through the Nature Conservancy of Texas only.

Natural Features

A series of springs provides up to 80% of the river's flow. Three types of stream conditions characterize the river: long, deep pools; wide shallow areas; and relatively deep, turbulent rapids. The river is free of impoundments, generally inaccessible, essentially primitive and unpolluted. Ecologically, the area combines elements of the Edwards Plateau to the east, the Trans-Pecos to the west and south Texas brush to the south. There are large, dense stands of live oak and pecan trees adjacent to the river, plus semidesert grassland vegetation on the ridges and slopes away from the river and numerous springs and seeps with mosses, ferns, various herbs, and vines.

Elevation

1300 ft.- 2080 ft.

Weather

As a warning to anyone visiting Devils River, it gets very hot in this part of Texas during the summer, so dress and prepare accordingly. Rainfall: 17.2; January minimum 38 degrees; July maximum 98 degrees.

Address

HC 01, Box 513, DelRio TX 78840

Directions

From Del Rio, go north on State Highway 277 for 45 miles, turn left on Dolan Creek Road (gravel) and go 18.6 miles to the park boundary. All visitors should be aware that the park is accessed by a county road, Dolan Creek Rd. (a rough 22 mile gravel/dirt surface with low water crossings.) High Clearance vehicles vehicles with 8 ply rating minimum (to prevent flats and blowouts) recommended. Nearest service station is 25 miles away and is not open all the time. The nearest full service station is 65 miles away.

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