Hike To An Abandoned Zoo On This Easy Trail In Texas

Posted in Texas
February 04, 2022
by Katie Lawrence

There are plenty of abandoned places in Texas sure to send a chill down your spine, but this one just might take the cake. The Old Zoo Nature Trails take you through the ruins of an abandoned zoo from the 1920s, and it’s the creepiest hike you’ll ever take.

During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.

You’ve likely never heard of the tiny Eastland County town of Cisco – after all, it’s home to fewer than 4,000 people.

This blip on the map is worth visiting, however, as it’s where you’ll find the Old Zoo Nature Trails.

Consisting of two short and easy hiking paths, the Old Zoo Nature Trails weave through the ruins of an abandoned zoo built in the 1920s.

Although the zoo wasn’t particularly large – it only had a handful of animals – vacationers still flocked to it in droves because it doubled as a cottage campground with a resort-style pool.

After the poisoning of a bear and the unrelated death of a deer, the zoo quickly fell into a state of disrepair.

The swimming pool remained operational into the ’70s, but nature began to reclaim the cages that once held creatures captive.

In the spring of 2021, a nonprofit organization known as Students, Athletics, Families, and Education – or SAFE, for short – took on the arduous task of turning the overgrown property into a hiking area.

Their efforts were successful, and by summertime, people were lacing up their boots to come check out the trails.

Each of the trails is less than a mile long and features an elevation gain of less than 150 feet, so almost everyone can enjoy them.

You’ll be creeped out in the best way possible as you trudge through the thick brush and up stone staircases en route to the decaying ruins of the old zoo.

From enclosures that presumably housed aquatic animals to rusty iron gates, the trails have an unmistakably eerie vibe about them.

Rest assured your spine will be tingling with fright!

The zoo might be the main attraction, but the views are pretty spectacular, too!

Even though there isn’t much of a climb involved, you’ll still get to enjoy sweeping panoramas of the wooden landscape surrounding the trails.

Click here to learn more about the trails.

Have you explored the Old Zoo Nature Trails? If so, we’d love to hear all about your experience! Tell us in the comments. For more eerily awesome abandoned places in Texas, check out our previous article.

Address: Old Zoo Nature Trails, Co Rd 112, Cisco, TX 76437, USA

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Mike Hunter

Mike is the owner of the local pool shop. He's been in the business for over 20 years and knows everything there is to know about pools. He's always happy to help his customers with whatever they need, whether it's advice on pool maintenance or choosing the right chemicals. He's also a bit of a pool expert, and is always happy to share his knowledge with anyone who's interested.

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