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Palo Duro Canyon Cruise Professional Review and Guide
"The approach to Palo Duro Canyon is an astonishing sight. The canyon is an immense natural wonder that appears very suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere. The road toward the State Park at Palo Duro Canyon passes through the flat, open pastureland of the Panhandle Plains. At the end of the road, suddenly and dramatically, the bottom drops out of the earth. The cover of the surrounding countryside is peeled off to expose a vast, almost indescribable interior. What was once an ordinary landscape instantly becomes a stunning and unique spectacle. There are few sights as beautiful and powerful, and it's hard to imagine so rapid a change in terrain. Terrain: the descent into and climb out of the canyon is rated at a 10 percent grade for 1.2 miles. Otherwise flat to gently rolling terrain. Road: secluded park road with little traffic."
--Andy White, Best Bike Rides in Texas (The Globe Pequot Press).
The Canyon Cruise is considered the entire park on the pavement. Once you pass through the entry gate the road steeply decents into the canyon. So, if you want the uphill challenge on the way back park at the visitor center just past the gate. If you don't then park by the Trading Post.
Lots of fun; relatively level with short ups & downs through the arroyos. Some rocks, narrow spots, & ledges provide challenges. Parking is close by; sandwich shop just up the road. Entry fee for park ($4). Popular trail; bikers compete with horses, hikers on some sections.
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