Less than a half hour drive south of
is the mysterious terra cotta badlands of Palo Duro Canyon, dubbed the
"Grand Canyon of Texas".
the staked plains of the
Panhandle, this 60-mile-long and 800-foot-deep canyon is a surprise among
these treeless plains. Surrounded by miles of open land and endless skies,
visitors will be amazed at the towering cliffs, banded by a myriad of
colors, and the amazing rock formations carved over millions of years by
the Prairie Dog Town Fork of the Red River.
second largest canyon in the United States, the term "Palo Duro” means "hard wood” in Spanish, and was named by those
first explorers for the canyon's abundant mesquite and juniper trees from
made their "hardwood" bows.
first humans to inhabit the canyon dates back approximately 12,000 years,
when the Clovis and Folsom people first lived here, hunting large
herds of mammoth and bison.
A view of Palo Duro Canyon near the entrance
of the park, June, 2006, Kathy Weiser.
This image available for
photographic prints and downloads