Clarity Tunnel Camping

Old 03-05-19, 07:52 PM
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TX_fartknocker
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Clarity Tunnel Camping

I'm not sure if I'm asking in the correct forum, but has anyone camped along the trail to Clarity Tunnel? It is a ten hour round trip to the area, so I would like to make it a weekend deal. I'd hate to drive five hours, ride for four or five hours, then drive five hours home. I have mountain bike and gravel bike. Which would be better suited for the trail?
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Old 03-18-19, 08:56 AM
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I've never camped along the trailway, although that is permitted and I've seen folks doing it. There is no water. If you cook, you have to use a 'containerized fuel' stove (no campfires).

The trailway section featuring the tunnel is just a few miles from Caprock Canyon State Park with developed campsites [electricity (if that's your bag), water...showers!] just outside the town of Quitaque.




The trailway runs 64 miles from South Plains, above the Caprock, to Estelline in the Red River breaks. The ~4 miles from Monk's Head Crossing to the tunnel is a class B+ rail trail and suitable for pretty much any bike other than skinny tire racers. The best scenery is from the tunnel up towards South Plains. This surface is dirt, rock, gravel and railroad ballasting, and if you're super into gravel your gravel bike will be the hot ticket although if you have an off road bike with front or dual suspension, that's what I'd ride.




My experience was a lot of the railroad ballast surface trail on towards Turkey and Estelline was grown up in vegetation, and we stopped to pull weeds and grass from our derailleurs - but not as often as my friends stopped to repair punctures. The entire 64 miles features tribulus terrestris - the infamous 'goat head' thorn. These well designed miniature caltrops are the nemesis of pneumatic tires. Sealant seems to be a modestly effective defense.

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Old 03-20-19, 08:36 PM
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tcs, Thanks for the response. I didn't realize good camping was that close to the tunnel. I've almost got mama talked into a hotel room at Turkey, which will allow me a reconn before scheduling the "Guy's Night Out"
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Old 03-21-19, 09:36 AM
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Two - or perhaps four, my wife and I - thumbs up for Hotel Turkey.
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