Gorge Gets Low-Pressure Wash for Summer
Canyon Gorge’s ancient ripples and aquifer channels got a low-pressure wash last week while other volunteers clipped invasive plants, added mulch around benches and examined trails to make sure they’re safe for Memorial Day Weekend visitors.
“We hope that the tourists are coming out and not only getting on the lake and the river but are looking for something else to do,” said Jaynellen Kerr, natural resource specialist with the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA), which manages the scenic 64-acre gorge.
Three-hour guided tours are $10 per person and are open to anyone seven years or older. They’re led by certified guides with assistance from trained docents and staff members with Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority, which manages the property.
Tours begin at 9 a.m. in May but bump back to 8 a.m. starting in June, when Texas’ fierce summer heat sets in.
To learn more and to sign up for a tour, click here.
GBRA also is working to turn Canyon Gorge into one big science experiment for fifth-grade students. Approximately 1,000 kids visited this year, and Kerr said they’re on track to educate 2,000 students during the 2019-20 school year.
Kerr’s working with Nathan Pence, GBRA’s executive manager of Environmental Science and Community Affairs, to develop self-guided, interactive gorge tours and plan and oversee construction of a new interpretive learning center.
“We need more parks and outdoor education for families to get outside and learn,” Kerr said in an earlier interview. “There’s just not a lot of it in our area. We’ve got the lake and we’ve got the river but we’ve also got a phenomenon right here in our backyard, and it’s incredible. Kids are learning, their test scores are going up, and families are getting out in nature. We plan not only on developing the new learning center but also on the North Rim Trail for self-guided tours.
Canyon Gorge was carved out by 34 inches of rain that fell into the upper watershed of the Guadalupe River over a six-week period in July 2002, sending up to 67,000 cubic feet of water-per-second flowing over the Canyon Lake spillway, carving out one of the most-riveting natural wonders in the Canyon Lake area.
The historic flood created a gigantic, 64-acre gorge, exposing ancient, Cretaceous limestone, fossils and even dinosaur footprints 110 million years old.
It is a textbook example highlighting Hill Country geology and the exposed Trinity Aquifer, clearly showing faults, fractures and seeps in the limestone. Limestone layers created from an ancient sea are visible, along with waterfalls and springs where the aquifer is exposed.