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Fire Damage Photos – Davis Mountains State Park, Texas

It seems the Davis Mountains just can’t catch a break. Just a few weeks after extinguishing the largest fire in Texas history, another fire burns in the Davis Mountains. Just east of Mount Livermore, the Tejano Canyon Fire was started by lightning and has burned 12,000 acres since Friday.

Burnt historic CCC building at Davis Mountains State Park

This happened just days after I left the area and received my first good look at the previous fire damage. This was my second trip to the Davis Mountains since the large Rockhouse fire. My first look at the damage was too fast to really see what had happened. This time around, however, I was able to spend several days in the area and get a good look. In particular Davis Mountains State Park.

Shortly after the Rockhouse fire reached Fort Davis, reports came out that Davis Mountains State Park had suffered damage. Some reports were saying historic CCC buildings had been destroyed while others said no structures had been lost. I was anxious to see what had actually happened.

Upon arriving at Davis Mountains State park it was obvious large portions of the skyline ridge had been burned. From the campgrounds you could see blackened rock all along SkyLine Drive as it snakes up the side of the park. Curious, we drove up to the top of the ridge to get a better look. From the top we could see that most of the southern side of the park had been burned. Everywhere we looked it seemed fire had scorched the landscape. We drove down toward the National Historic Site, taking in the burnt mountains side. Out of the corner of my eye an orange construction fence caught my eye. This could only mean one thing….fire damage.

Burnt mountainside at Davis Mountains State Park
The completely burnt south side of Davis Mountains State Park. This area is normally covered in waist high grass.
Burnt Yucca and blackened hillside at Davis Mountains State Park
Service road cuts across the burnt south ridge of Davis Mountains State Park
Burnt landscape stretches into the south valley at Davis Mountains State Park.

I hiked out to a small building completely surrounded by orange fencing. It was an old historic CCC structure. It seems the reports were true, small parts of history had been destroyed with the fire. The burnt mountainside is really no big deal….the land will heal itself and be better off after the fires. This isn’t always true of historic buildings. Still it didn’t seem to be a total loss. The structure was expertly made from mostly stone. Its seemed only the roof and window frames where wood. This building could probably be restored with a little effort.

Burnt Historic CCC building at Davis Mountains State Park
The fire destroyed the wooden roof and wooden window frames
Burnt window frame – Davis Mountains State Park

As the day came to a close my family headed up to the lookout to watch the sun set. Once there we saw what was probably the most damage from the fire. Another historic CCC building, this one much more affected by the fire. Nothing remained but a few upright stone columns. If this is going to be restored, it will take much more effort. My wife and I stood there staring at what remained of the building. It was sad…not two years ago on a date we sat under the shaded porch of this very building and ate a picnic lunch. It now seemed we would never do that again.

Burnt historic CCC building at Davis Mountains State Park

But as the sun slowly set on the Skyline ridge, and warm golden rays cast themselves on the building’s ruins. I couldn’t help but see beauty among the damage. Even with 75% of the building destroyed, it was still a beautiful work of craftsmanship. It helped to reconfirm in me why the Davis Mountains are such a special place. History, natural beauty, and nature working in a rare Texas mountain range. This is one of my favorite places on earth. Not even fire will change that.

Burnt historic CCC building at Davis Mountains State Park

Related Resources:
InciWeb: Tejano Canyon Fire

Related Posts:
Fire destroys Parts of Sitting Bull Falls Recreation Area
Sitting Bull Falls Recreation Area Closed Due to Last Chance Fire
Last Chance Fire Burns in the Guadalupe Mountains
Madera Canyon Trail Closed Due to Fire Danger
Fort Davis Fire Photos – A Special Week in Review
Davis Mountians State Park Closed Until May 1st.
Davis Mountains Wildfire Update – April 12, 2011
Fire Destroys Parts of Davis Mountains State Park in Texas
Areas of Big Bend National Park Closed Due to Fire Danger 

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  • Paul

    June 6, 2011

    It's always sad to see this type of devastation. At least it is more understandable when the cause isn't human related. Out of the ashes…

  • Emily

    June 8, 2011

    This is really saddening!!Thank god the damage was lessened because of regular prescribed burns and preventative maintenance done by park staff. Pellet Burner

  • BellaHolmes

    June 15, 2012

    This place is devastated and that's so bad seeing this. God has the plan why this place looks like this. Maybe He wanted us to love our nature and give so much care. I hope we could open our eyes and see this place. pasadena water damage

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