The Pinery Nature Trail
Our first night at the park we decided to explore a bit after we set up camp and realized there was a trail that connected the campsite to the visitor’s center. We sent out on this short walk not realizing there was a rainstorm brewing in the distance.
Once we arrived at the visitor’s center we realized there was a paved trail that was short, so we decided to go ahead and follow it.
As we got towards the end of the trail it started to sprinkle, so we turned around to head back to the campsite. A couple of steps later and it was raining cats and dogs. While I am not a runner, I decided some trail running was in order. We ran most of the way back and as soon as we got arrived, the skies cleared and a rainbow appeared. My husband will probably kill me for posting this picture, but who cares? =)
We were kind of bummed that we did not get to go to the Pinery Butterfield Station that night, but in the end we were glad we saved it for another day.
Trailhead: Headquarter’s Visitor Center
Length: .75 miles
Difficulty: Easy & Wheelchair Accessible
You can either choose to park at the visitors center or take the short trail out of the campsite that is right next to the non-flush toilets and group campsite.
Old Pinery Butterfield Station
Instead of taking the trail from the Visitor’s Center we parked in the parking lot for the Pinery Butterfield Station ruins which is just a very short drive from the visitor’s center.
The station was named for the nearby stands of pine. It was one of the most favorably situated stations on the original 2,800-mile Butterfield route.
For more history on the old Pinery Butterfield Station, see the Guadalupe Mountains National Park website.
Anyone that is a history buff, or just appreciates the history of our nation will love this visit.
While ruins are all that’s left, you can’t help but try and imagine what it was like back then!