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Ready to get Outdoors? Check out Texas State Parks

Ready to get Outdoors? Check out Texas State Parks

by Mikayla Merchant | June 22, 2020

The desire to get outside is higher than ever, and visiting state parks is a great way to safely experience the great outdoors with the whole family. Here at Arrive Outdoors, we aim to give you all the tools you’ll need to plan your summer travel. While this year’s camping season may look very different due to the impacts of Covid-19, we are here to help you navigate this time so you are able to get outside in the safest way possible. You can even check out our Park Status Tracker to see all the up to date information on park openings. 


Texas State Parks are just one of the many amazing outdoor destinations available for you to visit this summer. Lucky for you, we have the inside scoop if you’re looking for an adventure at any of the Texas State Parks. Here’s more about specific destinations within Texas State Parks and what to expect when you get there, so you can easily plan your travels.

 

What should travelers expect when traveling to Texas State Parks this summer (i.e. what's open/what's closed)?
 

Nearly all of our parks are open and accepting overnight reservations, but we have instituted some capacity limits to help protect our visitors and employees. All visitors, including both day and overnight guests, need to make a reservation and prepay for their visit. This includes annual passholders. It’s easy to do at www.texasstateparks.org/reservations  or by calling their customer service center, at 512-389-8900.


What are 3 lower traffic parks that would be a good option for visitors to explore this summer and avoid crowds?

 

  • Fort Parker - This park offers lake-view camping, fishing and paddling options, and even cabins. Plus it’s less than an hour and a half from the heart of the DFW metroplex.
  • Copper Breaks - This park has something for everyone with hiking, biking, paddling, fishing, even horseback riding. Come for the day, but stay for the night! Copper Breaks is certified by the international dark sky association for it’s incredible star-filled night skies.
  • Fort Boggy - This east Texas park is a quiet retreat deep in the pineywoods, conveniently located halfway between Dallas and Houston. Spend the day on the 15 acre lake and spend the night in one of the 5 recently built cabins that offer stunning views and screened-in porches.

For each of the above state parks, can you name one trail or site that is a must-see? 

 

  • Fort Parker - Check out the Bur Oak nature trail, this short trail has a wildlife-viewing area that includes a view of an active great blue heron rookery.
  • Copper Breaks - Explore rugged canyons and grass-covered mesas on the 3.8-mile Equestrian Trail. You’ll need to bring your own horse but the park offers equestrian campsites, a parking area, and a large tank for horses.
  • Fort Boggy - Go for a hike around the lake on the 1.5 mile Lake Trail or explore the woods on foot or bike by hitting the 2-mile nature Trail.

Any interesting facts that visitors might not know about Texas State Parks?

 

  • Kids play free! Kids age 12 and under never pay an entrance fee at any Texas State Park.
  • No license required! You don’t need a fishing license as long as you’re in a Texas State Park. Plus, many parks offer free tackle loaner programs! This is a great way to try out fishing for the first time.
  • In 2023 Texas State Parks will celebrate its 100th birthday! Now is a great time to discover the parks so we can celebrate our centennial together!

For more information about Texas State Parks we recommend visiting their website directly. If you are planning a trip outdoors, and either don’t have all of the necessary gear you need, or you are unsure about what to pack, contact our Arrive Outdoors team and we are more than happy to help! 

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