Return to Pedernales Falls - Wolf Mountain Trail

The Less Travelled Trails Of Pedernales Falls
User: Lone_Star - 2/13/2016  [View Log Page]
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 2point5stars
Distance: 18.00 Miles Duration: N/A

This hike was completely over a 3 day period.  The first part was a 2.1 mile hike to the Primitive Camping Area where I set up my tent for the evening.  The second part was the bulk of the hike (~14 miles), which included much of the Wolf Mountain Trail, some of the South Loop Equestrian Trail, some of the Madrone Trail, and some of the Juniper Ridge Trail (see my track file for the route I took).  The third and last part was a 2.1 mile hike from the Primitive Camping Area back to my car.

I should note that I walked .6 miles at the begininng of Day 2 without having my GPS set correctly, which explains the straight line segment.  I turned my GPS on once I realized my mistake.

Ok, onto the trails.  Basically, it's a "tangled mess" of multi-use (hiking, equestrian and biking) trails.  It's a great place to get some miles in, but I found many of the trails to be inadequately marked and since there are a lot of informal trails running through the woods, it's often unclear which is the "real" trail.  As a result, I got off trail a few times and had to walk along some utility rows until I could get back on the trail.

At the time I did the hike, it was closed to horses so I didn't encounter any on the trail, but I did run into several mountain bikers.

The distance made this hike a little difficult, but it was made easier by a lot of the shade from the mesquite trees.

What did I miss?
User: texaskdog - 7/12/2014  [View Log Page]
Rating: 1point5stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 7.46 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 13 minutes

One of the most boring hikes I'd ever been on.  Jeep trails as a rule are usually pretty dull. there is little water in the creeks (and if there was you only cross 3 of them).  Unless you like being bored and likely dehydrated and tired STAY AWAY!!!!  Or try it on a mountain bike it may be decent for that.

Lots of gravel!
User: KennyJ - 4/14/2010  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 8.00 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 55 minutes
I did this hike and had the trail to myself, except for a brief encounter with a roadrunner and a mountain biker. The views are very nice, but with most of the trail following an 8' or 10' gravel road, it was not exactly the experience I was hoping for. I love to hike under tree cover with the feeling of being a trailblazer, not the feeling of one following an abandoned dirt road. The gravel is loose in spots, and I had quite a good fall when going downhill. The wildflowers were in full bloom, and butterflies were everywhere. I plan to take my family back to the primitive camping area later this year. What the trail lacked in difficulty, it made up for in length and scenic views. I will return, but I think my favorite local hike is still Friedrich Park in San Antonio.
User: dgray216 - 10/11/2009  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 2.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Hilly, Scenic, Peacefull
User: tjbustem - 2/21/2009  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 5.00 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Rugged enough to keep the causal hiker away.  Saw wildlife and lots of wild flowers.  There's an old cemetery at the top of the trail that's very interesting.  If you don't look for it you will miss it.

User: johnbivona - 2/1/2009  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 8.25 Miles Duration: 5 hours, 30 minutes

Most of this hike is on an improved trail, gravel road, used to access the primitive camp site.  The ruins at Jones Spring is a nice stopping point for lunch.  Check out the stone fence next to the ruins; hand built & most have taken forever!  After the ruins, the trail narrows and is a little more difficult to follow.

Nice hike on a beautiful day.
User: BANDA - 1/31/2009  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 7.30 Miles Duration: 4 hours, 30 minutes

We enjoyed this hike today on a beautiful day. There are some really scenic ravines near the trail that can be seen if you take some of the small side trails. We have hiked this trail before, and have only seen other hikers in the past, but today a ranger in a pickup passed us going out as we were going in, then one passed us on foot  and another passed in another pickup going in as we were going out. Not sure what was going on but this seemed like a lot of ranger traffic and a lot of vehice traffic on the trail. Other than that it was pretty quite exept for several other groups of hikers and backpackers that we passed. There are some nice primitive camp sites in the area.

User: swatmama67 - 11/7/2008  [View Log Page]
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 7.50 Miles Duration: 4 hours, 30 minutes

My husband and I took the Wolf Mountain Trail on a Friday morning.  We only saw one other couple until we were leaving, when we met a youth group hiking in with camping gear.  I was somewhat disappointed with this trail.  As someone else mentioned, most of the trail is actually like a road.  Turns out walking on crushed gravel is harder on the feet and legs than we thought.  Ouch.  

We took the jaunt up to Jones Spring which was interesting- it was neat to see the ruins of the structure, but we wished there had been a marker with some kind of info.  We stopped on Wolf Mountain for lunch.  It was extremely quiet.

It had not rained in quite some time so all of the creeks and even the spring were mostly dry.

We did see a small snake trying to eat a much larger frog- that made a terribly disturbing sound.  And, off the trail but still noteworthy- we saw another snake sunbathing on the rocks where you can walk out onto the rocks in the river.

I think we will try this train again in the spring after there has been some rain.

User: nurse4rocks - 8/16/2008  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 10.30 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 23 minutes
User: Weilo - 7/7/2008  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 4stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 4.50 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 30 minutes

We went up with the Boy Scouts and took the  younger ones on the 4 mile loop and ended up coverin about 4.5 miles. Had a good time.

Great Hike
User: bspross - 7/4/2008  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 4stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 8.25 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 5 minutes

This is a great hike close to Austin.  It was very dry and none of the creeks had any water; however, the views are spectacular.  One note, if you are camping in the primitive area, don't take a wagon full of supplies.  There is a very steep uphill getting to the primitive hiking.

Everything about this trail is nice.  We went on the 4th of July and there was no one out there.  We did not pass anyone on the way out and only passed 7 people going to primitive hiking on the way back.  7 people over 8.25 miles is great for the solitude.

Make sure you stop at Jones Springs and check it out.  There wasn't much water in it either, but we had a little snack on the rocks.  There is a big sign so you won't miss it.

Not much for animals on this one.  All we saw were lizards, but they were fast little suckers.

All in all a great hike and highly recommended!

Good day hike/over night
User: omgjoz - 5/29/2008  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 18.00 Miles Duration: 1 day

I hiked the majority of the trails in one day.  The campsites are nice.  Only saw a couple people.  Besure to get a site on the bluffs just above the river, not above the creek :)  There are a couple rock walls good for climbing on the north side of the bluffs.  When I went in mid-may, it was very hot! So be prepared.

Hike through the hill country...
User: lordvallsbyrd - 5/21/2007  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 4stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 8.00 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 30 minutes
The first two to three miles of the hike up to the primitive camping area was fairly uneventful following a jeep trail all the way. There were some nice camping spots on the bluffs however and the rest of the hike was pretty rewarding. Jones Spring was nice and the old historical structure was interesting. The backside of the trail was by far the most enjoyable as you enter a patch of woodlands and then hike along the side of wolf mountain with some nice views. Overall I would say that it was an excellent hike that makes you work for its real beauty.
Fantastic hike
User: WalkerTexasHiker - 10/27/2006  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 7.50 Miles Duration: N/A
My wife and I did this one just last week...our first real hike since we took up this hobby and my first real hike in probably 25 years. We enjoyed it greatly and the views are well worth the effort, especially around the 5 mile point where you look out over the valley below. More seasoned hikers probably will scoff at my suggestion that the trail is rather rugged and difficult in some places and when we chose to take the branch of the trail over towards the primitive camping area, the trail deteriorates into several footpaths and it makes finding your way out a little less clear than I like. That said, we had no problems. Be aware though that the little map they give you at the ranger HQ isnt really adequate for hiking extended distances here and a couple of times we found the trail and the map to be in totally opposite agreement. It would probably be best to use GPS for this if you are at all unsure. The remains of the old stone house were interesting as was the extensive remains of the rock wall. I was really pleased to see that previous visitors didnt pocket the artifacts they came across and instead, piled them up on the walls of the house so that others could see them. While we were there, we added to it by finding several iron nails, colored glass and some fragments of china. We are definately going back to do this one again.
It's Hot Out There!
User: kcameron - 7/23/2006  [View Log Page]
Rating: 2point5stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 1point5stars
Distance: 7.50 Miles Duration: N/A
Although we were on the trail by 8:30 AM, by the time we finished the hike the heat was pretty oppressive. Because much of the trail is actually a road rather than a footpath, there is not a lot of shade. We did enjoy the part of the trail just east of Wolf Mountain where the foot path leaves the road and ventures off to Jones Spring. Coming upon the numerous rock walls and the ruins of the old house was interesting. We encountered 7 people on the trail, and we heard numerous others along the river.
Interesting areas
User: Riff Raff - 5/20/2006  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 7.50 Miles Duration: N/A
Very nice trail. As mentioned previously, you'll see significantly more people on the section between the trailhead and the primitive campground. It seems like a very popular backpacking destination for boy scouts and other youth groups. The trail is easy for the most part, and extremely well marked. There are mile markers every half mile, without fail, through the entire trail. The springs area was a nice place to stop, take a break, and eat lunch. My only complaint was that most of the trail doubles as a gravel road, so it's very sunny and wide. My favorite part of the trail was definitely the section between the springs and Wolf Mountain itself, which was actually a trail and NOT a gravel road. And the section going around Wolf Mountain just had outstanding views all along it. Very enjoyable, all in all.
It is what you make of it
User: Soonhorn - 11/5/2005  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 8.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Very easy long hike with lots of crushed stone. You will feel it by the end. Here is the secret...Go to the primative camping area and then follow the little trail along the cliff, it will eventually hook back up with the main trail. While in the primative camping area, snoop on down to the river and goof around down there. At the loop park of the trail they need to cut some cedar trees down to open up what would be super views. Maybe a bench along that area would be nice.
Great peaceful hike, lots of things to see
User: jmitchell - 7/24/2005  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4point5stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 8.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Not very difficult
Too many people
User: enhance - 5/1/2005  [View Log Page]
Rating: 2point5stars Difficulty: halfstar Solitude: halfstar
Distance: 8.50 Miles Duration: N/A
The trails are big enough to drive a truck down. People were everywhere. Lots of people were "camping" in the area provided, but while surrounded by other campers. This is a good hike if you're really old or don't walk much. However, parts of it were pretty cool. Some of the waterfalls were beautiful and if you get off the trail a bit it isn't too bad. It's not a great hike if you're really looking to get away from civilization though. This is a perfect hike for people who might be afraid of getting eaten by bears or killed by raccoons, you'll feel really safe and get to see trees.
User: AshleyNicole - 4/16/2005  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 8.00 Miles Duration: N/A
At the beginning there were lots of people, but the further in you went the less people there were. Good hike!
Nice long hike
User: ruskinmi - 2/20/2005  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 8.50 Miles Duration: N/A
This is a nice, long hike with lots of little creeks along the way.
great overnight primitive camping
User: granolo - 1/8/2005  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 3point5stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 8.50 Miles Duration: N/A
Primitive camping area was beautiful, and descending the bluffs to the river offers great riverbank wildlife spotting. Over two days I counted 17+ wild hogs in two different groups on the opposite riverbank. They ranged in size from large males to many small babies (maybe a few months old). Also saw deer, a blue heron, woodpeckers, countless cardinals, and 3 juvenile vultures (black) in a tree at the edge of my camp. They let me get very close to the tree they were in, and they were only about 20' up. The tree was on the edge of the bluffs, so i got a few semi-good pictures of them, including 2 of them when they finally did fly away. My third hike/first camping here. The low solitude rating is due to the fact that all evening into the night I was able to hear, sometimes very clearly, a live concert taking place somewhere near. The band was pretty good, though...
a very good workout
User: theatrewizard - 6/29/2003  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 3point5stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 7.50 Miles Duration: N/A
not having hiked in quite a while, we had our work cut out for us.
Very nice hike; quiet
User: texasgrape - 5/30/2003  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 3point5stars Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 7.50 Miles Duration: N/A
Temp went over 100 both days! Hiked the entire trail and camped in the primitive area that nite. Saw no one all day or all nite. The only thing I saw on Friday nite was the biggest raccoon I've ever seen. We heard its 'woman's like scream' thrice during the nite. Very eerie. Also, it took all our food that was hanging from a tree on a rope. Smart coon; dumb human. Jones Spring is awesome. Had we found the way to the river from the camping area, it would have been much better. In Parent's book "The Hiker's Guide, he says, "scramble down to the river to cool off." Man we needed that river; never did find the way down to it. Take plenty of water in the summer. Nice views; nice hike. :-)