Hiking Haller’s Haven Trail – Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge

Haller’s Haven Trail at Hagerman Nation Wildlife Refuge is a 2.7 mile loop that takes you through the woods, along the edge of several ponds, and the shores of Lake Texoma . Along the trail you will find all sorts of wildlife, wildflowers and several places to sit down and enjoy nature.

Haller’s Haven Trail – How to Get There

From the Visitor Center, turn right out of the driveway then stay straight and cross the low water crossing. Continue past the intersection with Hagerman Road and follow the left hand curve. About a 1/2 mile down the road it splits. Take the right side into the Goode Day Use Area and pass the restroom. The trailhead sign is about 200 feet to the right.

Haller’s Haven Trail – Trail Description

The Trail is well maintained, clean and easy to walk or ride your bike on. The trail is a natural surface and mixed pasture grass that isn’t always cut back. At every intersection or major direction change, there are trail direction signs that point you in the right direction. There are a bunch of other turn offs that lead out into the refuge and private properties. Until you know the area, stay on the trail. You might cross onto private property or into the hunting areas. Exploring off trail is not recommended. Check out the rules before visiting.

In good weather this is a great trail and easy to use. But I would not use this trail after it rains. This could but a muddy mess for anyone trying to hike the trails. When its hot out, the trail will have plenty of wind near the lake shore and the open pasture areas. But in the trees it hot and stuffy but there’s plenty of shade. All though this is a shorter trail and considered easy to moderate, make sure to bring plenty of water.

If you need to use the facilities, make sure to use them before you enter the trail. There isn’t a stop along the way. Depending on how fast you walk and enjoy the scenery, it can take over an hour to hike the trail. Luckily there is a chemical toilet at the trail head. Its somewhat clean but smells bad.

Dead Woman’s Pond

Hiking Haller’s Haven Trail – Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge

Dead Woman’s Pond can be found about 1/4 mile down the trail. It’s just past the metal bridge. Its the perfect spot to sit down and enjoy nature.

As to its name, there are several different stories behind the name. Basically, the stories says that a local farmer murdered his wife and tossed her into the the pond. One of stories gives the name of the farmer and it takes place in the 1930s. Other stories do not list the names of the couple but those stories take place further back in history.

I want to look further into these stories, but these could be old rural legends. Or it could have been real.  Anyone know more about the story behind the pond name? Even if its just a rumor, share your stories.

Haller’s Haven Trail – Review

So far I’ve hiked this trail twice. Once by my self and once with my wife. We both enjoyed this trail and plan to visit the trail again. So far I have visited this trail during mid spring and early summer.

Hiking Haller’s Haven Trail – Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge

The spring season on this trail is the perfect time to see all the emerging wildlife recovering from winter and see the spring wildflowers at bloom. The spring flowers grow along the edges of the trails, the shores, and through the pasture land. The flowers are covered in butterflies and other pollinators. I even saw a little blue heron on the old iron bridge. Unfortunately I was out of range to shot it with the camera.

During my first visit I saw two snakes on the trail. The first one was a black rat snake that I surprised on the trail (about 20 feet away) and it escaped to Picnic Pond. Once in the water it sat still long enough for me to photograph it.

Hiking Haller’s Haven Trail – Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge

The second one scared the crap out me. I was walking on the second to the last leg of the trail in the tall pasture grass when I almost stepped on the damn thing. It was stretched across the trail and I was stepping down and only a few inches from stepping on it when I saw its head through the grass. I jumped back a few feet and waited for it to leave. Since it was scared still I had the chance to take a few pictures of it. Its just another black rat snake basking in the sun.

Hiking Haller’s Haven Trail – Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge

As I was leaving the trail I snuck up on a couple of Eastern Cottontail Rabbits. They were nice enough to let me get a couple of portraits of them before they ran off.

During my second trip. It was early summer and hot. When the wind was blowing it wasn’t bad. It was mid afternoon and we didn’t see much wildlife.

Sources:

Haller’s Haven Trail – Advice

This is a great trail and out of the three trails that I have hiked at Hagerman Wildlife Refuge, Haller’s Haven Trail is my favorite. I plan to visit the trail this fall and once again in the winter.

As to the best time of year to visit, it depends on what you are looking for. For me its the wildlife and the wildflowers. So for me, mid spring is when I want to visit. Its when the spring wild flowers are at their prime. You will see a ton of wildlife in the area.

If you want to see color, then fall should offer a great display of fall color. I hope to experience this in the near future.

I would not recommend this trail after it rains or when its hot. Unless you enjoy the heat of summer or you like walking in mud.

Please Note: The more I visit, the more pictures I will take. I have ton of pictures and I take a lot on these trips. I will only share my favorites. I will add more images and information when I can.

Like my trail review? Then check out my reviews on AllTrails.com. Whenever I can hike a trail at a state/nation park or just a local park, I will review it there.

Haller’s Haven Trail – Gallery

About the Images

Images were shot by hand on a cloudy day with a Sony A6000 using a Sony E 55-210mm F4.5-6.3 Lens or a Sony SEL16F28 16mm f/2.8 Wide-Angle Lens. The images were then edited using Adobe Lightroom to crop, straighten and clean up the images. For some images I used Google NIK Collection and TopazLabs Clarity to add detail, add contrast, and sharpen/remove noise. As always my images are for sale with or without the watermark in digital and prints. Please contact me via the contact page for more information.

About James

James spends most of his free time using social media and loves to teach others about design, web development, CSS, SEO, and social media. He is addicted to Wordpress, social media, and technology. You can reach him on his personal website, Evolutionary Designs Blog, Do not forget to follow him on Twitter @element321

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