onto City Park Road. Take City Park Road almost to its end and turn right into the
Cibolo Nature Center. Cibolo Nature Center is 30 miles northwest of San Antonio.
DeLorme: Texas Atlas & Gazetteer: Page 68 J5. GPS: N 29 46.508' / W 98 42.817'
Start at the trailhead located north of the visitor center. There is a pavilion and building close to the
trailhead that has restrooms and a large mural-type map of the park painted on the wall. Go down a
few steps and almost immediately cross a bridge, then head south onto the Woodlands Trail. There is a
reclaimed pocket prairie to the right containing big bluestem grass, switchgrass, and Indian grass. This
is the type of grass seen in western prairie paintings from the 1900s, where the grass was taller than the
belly of a horse.
The trail stays close to the creek, and several paths lead down to the edge. Large bald cypresses,
along with some dogwood and basswood trees, line the shoreline. Red-eared slider turtles sunning
themselves congregate on logs protruding from the water.
Pass a stone stairway on the right (west) leading up to the Creekside Trail. The creek widens a bit
here, and there are large boulders that must be navigated around. The creek is nearby on the right, and
a bluff is bordering the left.
One of the best ways to identify and learn about what animals have been near the trail is to look for
signs such as tracks. The tracks of raccoons, skunks, armadillos, and deer are easy to identify and can
usually be found near the creek. This type of “search and identify” activity can even be enjoyed by
very young hikers.
At the next stairway turn right, heading west away from the creek and up the stairs. They are made
from stone and are very steep. The stairway acts as the connector to the Creekside Trail.
The scenery abruptly changes at the top of the hill, from the riparian forest that's along the creek to
the live oak savanna on top of the bluff. Ecologists call this transition zone between two different plant
communities an ecotone.
Follow the trail on top of the bluff as it heads away from the creek. The trees scattered along the
trail are mostly cedar, and prickly pear cactus is abundant. The trail then runs parallel with an electri-
fied wire fence that marks the park boundary. Pass a small picnic area and then continue following the
trail to the visitor center.
Be sure to check out the 80-foot-long set of castings of dinosaur tracks near the pavilion. It is be-
lieved the larger tracks were made by an Acrocanthosaurus, a 40-foot-long, three-ton, meat-eating di-
nosaur that walked on its two hind legs.