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 > State Parks in Texas

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sandersmr

Texas

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Posted: 05/12/12 10:33am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've been to Big Bend during Christmas - cold in the mornings but warmed up nicely during the day.

Texas State Parks have a 2 week max for almost all of the parks. And a handful have FHU, but there are a lot that have w/e with dump stations. There are so many fantastic parks in the State Park system.

And I find the online reservations fairly easy if a little awkward to use. It's great if you know what park you want and pretty good if you have a date range.

Also be aware there is a daily entrance fee in addition to the camping fee. The state park pass covers the entrance fee.


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ljr

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Posted: 05/12/12 12:19pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

During the Winter I've found the Texas State Parks to be very liberal about exceptions to the 2 week limit.

Quintana Beach County Park is right on the Freeport ship channel. Watching a 1,000 ft LNG tanker come in and dock is really neat. I spent a month there last winter. If you go, be sure and pay your respects at Buddy's grave. Somebody buried his dog a couple miles up the beach and put up a marker. It was the turn around point for my morning walks.

Matagorda Bay Nature Park is one of several run by the Lower Colorado River Authority. The river is on one side, the ocean on another. I plan on spending a couple months there next winter.

Both Matagorda and Quintana have FHU and monthly rates.


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MichDoc

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Posted: 05/12/12 12:43pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

For bird enthusiasts, you can't beat Goose Island State Park. Camping available, with lots of birds to view. As a bonus, there is Aransas National Nature Preserve about 20 miles northeast of Goose Island. Both areas are nesting sites for the Whooping Crane, plus dozens of other birds.
Another nice park is Bentsen State Park in the RGV. No camping there, and you have to stay in a RGV campground while you're there, but definitely worth it for a few days. LOTS of exotic birds there.

mockturtle

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Posted: 05/12/12 01:23pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MichDoc wrote:

For bird enthusiasts, you can't beat Goose Island State Park. Camping available, with lots of birds to view. As a bonus, there is Aransas National Nature Preserve about 20 miles northeast of Goose Island. Both areas are nesting sites for the Whooping Crane, plus dozens of other birds.
Another nice park is Bentsen State Park in the RGV. No camping there, and you have to stay in a RGV campground while you're there, but definitely worth it for a few days. LOTS of exotic birds there.

Yep, I didn't mention the birding but it's the best in the country. Big Bend is a terrific place for winter birding.


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RVUSA

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Posted: 05/13/12 06:35am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'll toss another in, Galveston beach state park. I dont think it has a 2 week limit in the winter, not sure though.

You may not be hiking in trees but a sunset hike on the beach isnt that bad of a consolation prize. There was a couple pretty cool hawks there when I stayed. Galveston itself has some really old architecture if you like old buildings.

Paleo Ron

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Posted: 05/13/12 05:36am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As always, you guys come through. What a great bunch; thanks so much. Looks like I'll have lots of options.

2112

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Posted: 05/13/12 08:48pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Another panhandle gem is Caprock canyon state park. Wildlife abound as well as a herd of buffalo and miles and miles of wonderful hiking trails.


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Don in Niagara

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Posted: 05/15/12 02:29pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We have stopped overnite at Cooper lake State Park sevral times. It was late November last year and the site we were given was alraedy occupied. ... by 3 or 4 deer!! We were in the south unit and the only other humans n our section were the hosts in their fiver which was all decorated up for Christmas. We took a walk down by the lake and must have saw 20 or 30 deer ... and one fox!
Another real nice park, out in west Texas is Balmorhea S.P. Didn't see any deer there.


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4huskers

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Posted: 05/16/12 11:58am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Choke Canyon SP is get for birding and other wildlife viewing. They did a controlled burn a few months ago. That should open the views up more.

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