Kickapoo Cavern State Park- Bracketville

Kickapoo Cavern State Park- Bracketville

 

      

Kickapoo State Park is located 22 miles north of Brackettville, Texas, and is a relatively small state park, but with clean facilities and friendly staff. If you are looking for a place to go and escape the hustle and bustle of the day-to-day life this park is the park for you. It is literally in the middle of nowhere — meaning no cellular service, no noisy traffic basically other distractions. Just you and your family away from everyone else in the peaceful outdoors.We stayed in one of their 15 camp sites (some for big and small RVs and some for tent campers). I really enjoyed our campsite it was hidden and surrounded by lots of trees and cactuses. This was the first state park that offered firewood and bags of ice and only asked for a donation in return. This was a huge help since we were so far from town. Being so far from town has its perks especially at night. One perk is that you will have an amazing view of the stars. I would suggest if you are not familiar with the constellations you get familiar with them so that you can enjoy them.

     

Wildlife at the park

Since we are far away from the town you are able to see many different animals. We saw owls and eagles by the cave. I think they were waiting for the bats so that they could eat them. We also saw a wild pig just running in the parking lot. Both nights that we were there we were visited by an armadillo. He just came right up to our campfire. He seemed so unafraid. This was a treat especially because we had never seen an armadillo so close. The park ranger said we had to be careful with raccoons because they like to raid the campsites. We were lucky no raccoons came to visit us. Kickapoo is home to 240 species of wonderful birds. Cool right! Well, it gets better! Kickapoo is home to half the number of bird species recorded in the entire state of Texas!!! Wow, so if bird watching is your thing I would strongly suggest you stop by Kickapoo.

Kickapoo Cave Tour 

The main attraction for this park is the cavern and it is totally worth seeing. What sets this cave apart from any other cave you ask? Well, Kickapoo Cavern is approximately one-quarter mile in length. Not that long right well, it is actually the largest cave formation in the state of Texas. So just how large is this cave well inside there is a giant natural column formation that rises as tall as an eight-story building!!! Does this sound like something you want to see? Well, you’re in luck they have ranger led tours on Saturday and you must call and make reservations for the Wild Cave tour (they limit them to 20 people per tour). They call it a Wild Cave tour because it is an unimproved natural cave system. What does that mean? Well, basically it means it’s a wild cave there are no stairs, no guardrails, no lighting and no walkways, just a cave. Make sure to be prepared for the tour.

  1. Bring your own flashlight or a head strap light
  2. Wear comfortable shoes because you will be climbing up and over rocks.
  3. Water bottle that you can wear (Camelback)

The great thing about this type of cave exploring is it makes you feel like you are truly exploring this cavern for the first time. Cool right! Oh, they will provide you with a helmet and you will have to sign a liability waiver. You can still see some names etched on ancient formations that are dated from the 1800’s. Most of this cave is formed of dead and fossilized formations.

Trails

If trails are your thing this is definitely a fun stop to make. Kickapoo State Park is made up of 6,368.4 acres on the Southern Edwards Plateau and has numerous marked trails. We wanted to go on some of the trails but we decided not to because there are ticks at the park (which really was the only down fall). So I strongly recommend you take Tick repellent with you. They were also a few ticks at the campsite we got maybe 6 of them during our stay. If ticks are not a big worry for you then I would suggest you go on the trails because they looked like fun.

             

Watch the Bats Emerge from Cave
Stuart Bat Cave is a 1,068-foot deep cave and it is home to many Mexican Free Tail Bats. So, if you would like to see the bats and a porcupine emerge from a cave at dusk this would be a good stop for you. The bats emerged around 8:30 pm and it went on for about 30 mins. The cool thing about this cave is that the ranger allowed us to be about 5 feet from the cave entrance! It was amazing the kids really did enjoy it because there were bats flying around them. The ranger did tell us that it is illegal to catch a bat so if they go to close to you just duck down. It was really cool to see them come out because when they fly out they don’t just fly straight out. They circle around in a spectacular, whirling mass that looks kinda like a black tornado. The ranger went on to explain to us that the reason they do this is to build up momentum before they head out to search for insects in the near by ranches. If you are an early riser and you think you can be at the viewing site about 5:30 am then you can see the bats are returning. We wanted to do this but since we were staying up late to see the stars, make smores and tell stories we were unable to attend the bat return viewing.

All in all we really did enjoy our weekend stay at Kickapoo State Park and would recommend it to anyone who wants a real away from town experience. If you enjoyed this post and would like to follow us please subscribe……

Happy Trails to you all

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86 thoughts on “Kickapoo Cavern State Park- Bracketville

  1. I was wondering if that was a pig! I’ve never seen a wild pig! Or an armadillo! This sounds like a great escape for the family

  2. Wow, that bat cave sounds cool. I would love to take my kids there to experience this park. It sounds really cool.

  3. This place looks so awesome! Our entire family would love visiting here. We will have to add it to our list!

  4. That is a great park, it has everything hiking, wildlife, birding and the cave. Don’t expect to be there soon but if I ever am it is on my list.

  5. That park has everything including birds, wildlife, hiking and the cave. I don’t expect to be in Texas but if i am it is a place I will look for.

  6. A cave tour sounds so fun! This would be great to do as a family. Get outdoors and explore nature.

  7. It would be so nice to go here and just explore the cave! I’m pretty sure this is also going to be a hit with families! I can imagine how much the kids will learn here.

  8. This would be a fun family trip! Exploring a cave would definitely be a memorable adventure.

  9. Finding a place with wildlife and places to explore would definitely entice my kids into walking further and being more excited to get out in nature.

  10. We are a big fan of state parks. We love that they are preserving all the best of the natural beauty and that they are mostly free or very inexpensive!

  11. I wonder if this is the same cavern they showed on Earth Live. It was incredible to see so many bats in one location. Not sure I would want to be that close but watching it on tv live was worth it.

  12. That cave looks awesome. If I ever find myself in Texas, I will definitely have to add that to my to-do list!

  13. Sounds like a great place to visit if you like exploring nature. We love going to local state parks, even the small ones nearby.

  14. Wow, sounds like a great place to stop by! The bat cave sounds cool and creepy at the same time. LOL! Loved the photos.

  15. I love caverns! Been all over Texas and never heard of this.

  16. That park seems to be fun for the whole family!

  17. This looks like so much fun! I always enjoyed doing things like this as a kid, and now I love doing them with my kids. I also really like bats so this would be a fun trip for sure!
    Jessica Joachim recently posted…Being the “Perfect Mom” In 2017My Profile

  18. I have never been to Texas but I am intrigued. I would love to visit Kickapoo Cavern State Park. Thanks for sharing

  19. That picture of the pig made me stop..lol. This looks like a very much needed place to visit when you need to literally get away from city life. I am definitely some ways from Texas, but will try to see if there are similar places near me in Maryland. I like the no cell service getaways.

  20. Wow! How fun! That bat cave looks incredible! One of these days I’m going to have to go to Texas and do some exploring.

  21. I would love the cave! I am a geologist after all 😉 I think state parks are the best way to connect people and nature!

  22. sounds as a veru great place!! thank you for your post!

  23. I live in Texas, so I will have to go here! It looks super fun. I chuckled a bit when I read the name of a park, it sounds amusing.

  24. Elisha Fernandez

    I live in Texas, so I will have to go here! It looks super fun. I chuckled a bit when I read the name of a park, it sounds amusing.

  25. Looks like a great place for whole family. So many activities and so much to explore.

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  26. When I hear ‘Kickapoo,’ I always think of Jack Black and Tenacious D! Wow, this looks really cool, especially the bats emerging, scary stuff!

  27. how fun! I think the Wild Cave would be right up my alley!

  28. that sounds super awesome! my kids love caves so I know they would have a blast with this trip!

  29. There is really nothing like a great trail. That cavern looks like so much fun

  30. My family and I love exploring natural attractions together. I would love to visit Kickapoo Cavern State Park someday in the future!
    Heather Johnson recently posted…Recommended Book Series for Kindergarten and First Grade: Poppy’s PicksMy Profile

  31. It is so exciting to be in a park like this.
    But I don’t like bats, honestly.

  32. This place sounds great for a holiday getting back to nature. We don’t do a lot of camping (because it always rains here!) But I would love it there!

  33. There are owls and eagles ! I have never seen them in real life. The bat cave sounds compelling albeit I don’t like bats.

  34. I’m glad the bats are safe and too bad you didn’t catch any photos~ I’ve been to one bat cave in Malaysia but I didn’t get to see any upclose 🙁
    Tiffany Yong recently posted…MON MON MON MONSTERS (报告老师! 怪怪怪怪物!) Movie ReviewMy Profile

  35. This looks like my kinda place. You guys seem like you had an adventure. A bat cave is awesome I probably would pass out if I saw a bat.

  36. I would love to take the kids here! It’s amazing and there’s plenty of things to explore. I’m sure it’s going to be one awesome trip!

  37. The cave tours look incredible. I would love to check them out sometime.

  38. Thank you so much for the helpful tips and reminder before going there. Kickapoo Cavern sounds really amazing. I love the pics!

  39. What an interesting experience! I love walking around parks and this looks like a pretty fun adventure! Personally, I could do without the bats though! I think they’re amazing creatures but they give me shivers aha

  40. This places looks super fun and I am pretty sure my family would truly enjoy it! 🙂 The cave looks awesome!

  41. WOW! That is absolutely great experience. I remember visiting one cave when I was much younger, and now seeing all that you experienced just brought back my memories 🙂

    Thank you for sharing this wonderful experience with us 🙂

  42. This park looks so gorgeous! I would love to go and experience it with my family.

  43. Wow! That cave tour looks fantastic! What a great experience

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