Clarity Tunnel LbNA # 31426
|Owner||Tracy and Gil |
|Placed Date||May 29 2007|
The Clarity Tunnel was the last operating railroad tunnel in Texas (excluding recent DART excavations). It lies on the Fort Worth and Denver South Plains Railway route through the Panhandle, near Quitaque. The route required two tunnels: the 742 foot long Clarity, and a shorter tunnel that was opened out after a train derailed inside.
In 1993, 64 miles of the route was converted into a hike-and-bike trail and operated as the Caprock Canyons State Park Trailway System. The Tunnel is located about 4.5 miles from the Monk's Crossing access point, near Quitaque. The walk is almost level and is dead straight for the first few miles. Although there is water at the tunnel, this should not be relied upon: take plenty of drinking water in summer. The tunnel also houses a large colony of Brazilian free-tailed bats: do not handle any bats that you might find on the ground.
This is a bumpy ride...I hope you have a padded bike seat! Take plenty of water, sunscreen, biting fly repellent, a flashlight - and a camera! It is beautiful country! Please be highly respectful of the bats in the tunnel. They made the sweetest sounds while we walked thru. There is a well maintained chemical toilet at the tunnel entrance. Please remember your water as the water there is not always available. It is a level bike ride. Slightly uphill there and relatively downhill the way back. Several wooden bridges to cross adds to the beauty of this trek.
To get to the box...hike thru the tunnel from the Monk's Crossing parking lot. Look using only natural light for Ava Checkpoint #2. Count back three single posts. Clarify the correct post by locating 4 large bolts. Behind here lies the box. Please rehide well and enjoy your return trip thru the tunnel. Let me know you found this!