Hi guys! My name is Frank. Welcome to my article on the epic Enchanted Rock of Texas. For those who don’t know me, I am best known for my mini-mini-van life. I took a hatchback Honda Fit and converted it into a micro-camper and have driven coast to coast in the USA a few times now!
I grew up in the midwest and spent my summers and falls exploring the lakes and forests of Michigan. All of my photos are with an iPhone! I have always been interested in the outdoors and art. It wasn’t until I started traveling in the mini-mini-van that I started to combine these loves.
Visiting Enchanted Rock, Texas
The name alone sparks the spirit of wonder and adventure. Who wouldn’t want to see an Enchanted Rock? This was my first visit after hearing a lot about the spot from Texans. It seemed to be a local favorite. This massive, pink-ish, granite dome rises above miles of Texas hill country.
There are many trails to enjoy but they essentially form two circles. The largest goes through the hill country surroundings while the smaller one goes around the base of Enchanted Rock. Of course, there is the trail to the top as well. Way behind the rock you can also hike to a small pond and see the rock itself reflect on the pond – which adds even more enchantment.
Hiking around Enchanted Rock
Enchanted Rock truly is enchanted but you have to be looking for the enchantment to find it. I camped outside the park. I do this often because I seldom utilize a full campsite. I see camping as a means to get closer to a place I want to explore. Sleeping outside isn’t really the goal for me.
Arriving at the park before sunrise gave me the chance to immediately hike to the top. I sat up there for a few hours and watched the sunrise. After this I went snooping around for some caves that exist around the formation.
I also remember being infatuated by a rock layer that was about six inches thick and protruding out about an inch above Enchanted Rock itself. When I walked over this it made a unique, hollow noise. I walked on that for a few too many minutes. After that, I hiked around on the outer loops.
I always make hiking a priority and see what catches my eye. Photography is a fun way to enjoy nature. The top of the rock was an obvious favorite for me, especially during golden hour when things started to turn the brightest of pink. I find there is something that makes you feel powerful yet incredibly small when you stand on top of a vast vista like Enchanted Rock.
My Highlight of Enchanted Rock
The highlight of this trip came quite unexpectedly. Hiking has a way of relaxing the mind and always puts me in a good mood. This alone makes any hiking trip worth it. This time I started the day completely alone.
I was the only car in the parking lot. After some time at the top of the rock, three guys hiked up and were in the background of most of my photos. I planned to photoshop them out, as I frequently do. The problem was – I never normally meet these people in the background of my shots.
Later that day I met the guys and we had a great conversation. The meeting reminded me that these persistent background people are indeed people with a story and you can’t just “photoshop” them out. They matter. I ended up posting the original image on my Instagram. The guys are tagged if you want to see their adventure – it’s quite the story itself!
Things To Do at Enchanted Rock
- Hiking to the top at sunrise or sunset is an absolute must-do.
- Explore the surroundings and find a cave or two (bring a flashlight).
- Hike to the back of the park and catch the reflection on Moss Lake.
- Take one of the outer loop trails and see the rock from a new angle.
- Seek out a rock climbing route and watch climbers do their thing!
Where to Stay near the Rock
The Texas State Park system has great campgrounds. There is a primitive campground at Enchanted Rock if you want to go backpacking. If you are looking for a comfortable bed, head to the town of Fredericksburg.
Other Places to Visit in Texas
There are so many things to do near Enchanted Rock. There are at least four amazing state parks within driving distance. The Hamilton Pool Preserve is also pretty neat. Texas offers great BBQ, banana pudding and sweet tea. Stop at mom-and-pop restaurants. You won’t be disappointed.
Need to Know Before you Go
- It gets hot at Enchanted Rock, so bring water and plan for the sun. Hiking early provides you with cooler weather.
- The stars are super bright out here. Carve out some time in your evening for stargazing. It will totally take your breath away!
- There is an entry fee for Enchanted Rock. It’s pretty low – around $8 per vehicle I think. After hours, it’s on a cash honor system.
- Read up on the history of Enchanted Rock before you go. People have been using the area for 12,000 years. There are many legends, myths and stories. I will post some of this history on Instagram for your enchanted reading. You can follow me here: @speakingquitefrankly.