Valley Ecosystems


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Established in 1943 as a Safe haven for migrating birds, this beautiful wildlife center might not be the biggest, but it certainly boasts some colorful visitors.

While our visit was quite brief, our next stop definitely made up for it. If you want to visit the biggest swamp in south Texas, you can always head right down to Weslaco, Texas and be one with nature at the beautiful Estero Llano Grande Park.

This isn’t your ordinary park. With a mix of wetlands, brush, plains, and trails, this park boasts hundreds of different species of wildlife. For all you bird watchers, this will be your paradise. Walkers or joggers will be happy to hear of a ten mile long trail. But keep your eye out because there are also.

With over 230 acres at your disposal, it’s easy to get slightly overwhelmed on what to do or see, but don’t worry, there are guided tours that you can join here daily, or, just strap on your jogging shoes, get some water, and take a nice jog throughout the park!

There have been an estimated 350 types of birds that stop here during migration seasons. Don’t believe me that this is the place to be? Visit the refuge yourself! It’s right in the middle of the valley, and is perfect for your entire family.

Last on our trip was a lake you can’t swim in and you can’t drink from. If you take 281 up to state hwy 186, you’ll find what many knew existed yet many never visited!

This impressive 530 acre salt lake is not very easy to get to especially with the hot sun bearing down on us. But the hike gives you a workout that you didn’t even know you needed! And while my photographer and i were walking along our route to get to there, we ran into a few winter Texans who were more than eager to share their journey.

We bid adeau to our new found friends, but it wasn’t long till we reached the salt lake. The scene was breath taking. Once you take a step on the lake bed, you can feel the salt beneath your feet.

The lake is so far into the wild, that you can just be one with nature. It was tough to leave, but anyone who has a chance to come out here, should. I’ll never forget my time spent while visiting the valley’s hidden gem, La Sal Del Rey.

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