Monday, May 20, 2013

The Story of Frijole Ranch

Frijole Ranch, Guadalupe Mountains National Park
Guadalupe Mountains National Park has incredible scenic vistas and terrific hiking trails, but it is also blessed with stories from the past.  A brief visit to Frijole Ranch tells so much about the efforts of early ranchers who tried to made the mountains their home.  Around 1876, the Rader built the small stone structure and stayed there until sometime before 1900.  The Smith family lived and worked at the ranch for thirty-six years and made it the social center of the area, beginning around 1906.  You can tour the ranch house, and peek in the post office and one-room school building from the Smith family's time at the ranch.

The ranch is just adjacent to the trailhead to Smith Spring, one of our Texas Mountain Trail Heritage Hikes, included in our Peak Fitness Challenge.  The 2.6 mile loop trail takes you through desert, into a cool shaded spring area, into arroyos and by a pond, where birds and wildlife like to gather.

Read more about the Ranch here and here.  It is a great place to visit!

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