Great Texas Wildlife Trails

North Fork River Loop

North Fork Loop map

North Fork loop mapM.K. Brown Boy Scout CampWheeler City ParkPuryear RanchBritt RanchThe Greenhouse PlaceBob Weatherly’s Home Place

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More information:

  • Wheeler COC, 806-826-3408,

071.gif PHP 071 M.K. Brown Boy Scout Camp

Suggested Seasons to visit: Migrations, Summer

Site access restricted.

From Wheeler, take TX 152 west for 5.6 miles to FM 3182. Turn north on FM 3182 and go for 3.2 miles to the camp entrance on the left.

The camp has several prairie, woodland, marsh, and lake habitats, and a full-time camp ranger. Public access may conflict with Boy Scout activities, particularly in summer, so call ahead to confirm availability.

806-826-5821, Open daily but check for seasonal closures.

072.gif PHP 072 Wheeler City Park

Suggested Seasons to visit: All Seasons

Site open for day use only.

From the intersection of US 83 and TX 152 in Wheeler, go south on US 83 for 0.2 mile. Turn left/east and go another 0.2 mile. Watch for signs.

This pleasant city park has a creek running through it that attracts various dragonflies and butterflies. Look for migrating songbirds in the large shade trees throughout the park.

073.gif PHP 073 Puryear Ranch

Suggested Seasons to visit: All Seasons

Site access restricted. Fee charged.

The Puryear Ranch has three lakes; the largest of these, South Lake, covers 20 acres and provides excellent habitat for waterfowl. Trumpeter Swans have been seen on this lake, and the reservoir is filled with snags. Primitive campsites are available here for a remote and secluded experience. The middle lake is smaller and beavers are active up and down Sweetwater Creek. Lesser Prairie-Chickens come to the ranch to feed in September and October. Photo blinds are available. Home Lake and the nearby spring are heavily wooded with black walnut and cottonwood. A half-mile trail follows the stream and provides good woodland birding opportunities.

806-826-5600, Call for directions.

074.gif PHP 074 Britt Ranch

Suggested Seasons to visit: All Seasons

Site access restricted. Fee charged.

This 20,000-acre ranch has two guest houses, 5 lakes, four creek systems, extensive hillside seeps, riparian woodlands, oak mottes, and several Prairie Dog towns. The ranch also has booming grounds of Lesser Prairie-Chickens, good populations of Northern Bobwhite and White-tailed Deer, and historic sites including a cemetery and an 1886 country school.

Birds found in open land throughout the property include Swainson’s Hawk, Eastern Kingbird, both Eastern and Western Meadowlarks, Lark Sparrow, and Dickcissel. Closer to woodlands are Mississippi Kite, Red-tailed Hawk, Barred Owl, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Barn Swallow, Eastern Bluebird, Warbling Vireo, Song Sparrow, and Red-winged Blackbird. The attractive pond next to one of the guesthouses is full of turtles and dragonflies. Riparian woodlands bordering Sweetwater Creek provide good habitat for birds, especially during migration.

806-826-5786 or 806-826-0092, Call for directions.

075.gif PHP 075 The Greenhouse Place

Suggested Seasons to visit: Migrations, Summer

Site access restricted. Fee charged.

This site has an attractive pond with waterfowl and a beautiful wooded creek that provides excellent habitat for dragonflies, woodland birds, and other wildlife. Those interested in plants will find exploration along the creek very enjoyable.

806-264-2818, Call for directions.

076.gif PHP 076 Bob Weatherly’s Home Place

Suggested Seasons to visit: All Seasons

Site access restricted. Fee charged.

The Weatherly property includes four tracts, each of which offers a different view of the various ecosystems in the region. The Home Place has ponds fed by a creek that runs roughly two miles down the length of the property. The habitat is excellent for woodpeckers, as numerous snags have been left standing. Golden-fronted Woodpecker, Downy Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, and Eastern/Western forms of Northern Flicker are common here in winter. A treeline runs for one mile along the far edge of the property, and is excellent habitat for woodland birding. Wild Turkeys are abundant. A cabin for overnight stays makes this a convenient place from which to wake up in the middle of habitat. The Sammons tract has a small, conveniently located prairie dog town with a viewing blind to observe Prairie Dogs, Burrowing Owls, and raptors. The beautiful sand sagebrush rangeland of the Mitchell tract provides opportunities for observing a variety of native grasses and wildflowers. Spectacular sunsets and abundant photo opportunities await.

806-256-5042, Call for directions.

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