We enjoyed an extended weekend of camping in Red Rock Canyon. This is the area where Keith’s great grandfather C.E. Garee found the Caddo Maple tree as he explained in his account:
History of Caddo Maple (Acer saccharum – Sugar Maple) Hard Maple About the late twenties I found in some canyons in Caddo County, some acer saccharum (sugar maple) that did not turn brown in August, but held the sap in the leaves so they could turn brilliant red and yellow at the approach of frost. I soon began selling a few of them, but cannot trace any of them now, except one. About the mid-thirties, Howard Jenson and I spent a Saturday in one of the canyons. Howard was head of the O.U. Landscape Dept. While I was getting small seedlings to plant in the nursery for later sale, he spent the day searching out and digging larger trees to plant on the campus. If you want to see any of the 16 trees resulting from that day’s work, drive over the campus on the approach of frost. You will not need to have them pointed out. Every one will show itself.
Recently, Robert Rucker, head of the Landscape Dept. and his foreman, Joe Peters (now deceased) have planted a lot of them and have grown a small nursery of them near the south edge of the grounds.
I have dubbed it “Caddo Maple” to distinguish it from hard maple from any other source, which up to now, have never failed to brown and lose their beauty in August. — C.E. Garee, Ed Garee’s Stories, page 13
Interestingly, the canyon is the only remaining site of native Caddo maple trees. I think it’s fascinating to retrace the steps of our ancestors.
This canyon area was a stop on the California Road and there are wagon wheel ruts still visible.
We enjoyed visiting a local museum, walking around the canyon, a relaxing campsite and hotdogs cooked on the outdoor grill.
The entrance/exit is quite steep and winding road and our truck did a great job pulling our trailer.