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> Enchanted Rock…
> Main Dome
Access Issue: Rule changes for pets and trail closures 30 minutes after sunset
Rule Changes Concerning Pets at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area to Take Effect March 1. Beginning March 1, new rules will take effect at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area designed to balance the need to better protect sensitive natural habitats atop the rock, including the vernal pools, and still allow visitors to continue to enjoy central Texas’ most popular destination with their pets.
Starting Tuesday, pets will only be allowed in specified camping areas, day-use areas and the Loop Trail. Pets will no longer be allowed to accompany hikers on the Summit Trail that ascends to the top of Enchanted Rock. Most trails, including the Summit Trail, are closed 30 minutes after sunset, allowing park visitors to view the sunset and safely descend to the parking lot. The Loop Trail is the only trail open after sunset to gain access to the primitive camping areas.
The Smorgasbord Area is one of E-Rock's 'hidden' areas that contains a number of fun, moderate single pitch climbs, and doesn't see much traffic. It's a good place to visit on those crowded weekends when the other walls are mobbed with people. It is located on the backside of the Main Dome between Center Wall and the Echo Canyon areas. All of the climbs here are trad routes that range from 5.3 to 5.10a with the majority checking in around 5.8. A couple have anchors, but most do not. Strawberry Jam (5.3) provides an easy way to the summit if you want to walk off the top at the end of the day.
One of the reasons why the Smorgasbord Area isn't visited too often is because it's a little ways off the beaten path and it takes some work to get to. It is possible to reach the wall by following the main trail around the backside of the Main Dome until you are even with the wall, and then bushwhack up to the base. The easier route to the base of the wall is through Echo Canyon. From the base of Echo Canyon, hike the green climbers' trail to the Triple Cracks area. There is a narrow slot behind Grass Crack on the far left side of the area. Climb through the slot and shimmy to the top of a slab that deposits you at the base of Smorgasbord (5.6). The remaining climbs can be reached by following the base of the wall.