Texas State Park Hiking Trails

Here is a list of some of the best hiking and walking trails in Texas State Parks. You'll find trails that take you to the top of a 425 foot pink granite dome, through narrow river carved slots, by lurking alligators, and to a 60 foot waterfall. The diversity of these Texas hiking and walking trails is what makes them fun, scenic, and well worth the trip.

Hiking Trails in Texas State Parks

Bastrop State Park

Bastrop

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Bastrop State Park
The scenic Overlook Trail and Post Oak Spur will lead you through breathtaking views of the loblolly pine forests on this two mile trek. The trail is dirt carpeted with pine needles and crisscrossed with tree roots. Bastrop State Park has several trails in the area and each is marked by color-coded metal markers on the trees. This is a family trail in total shade for the entire length and the benches are great for resting the feet. Read our review of Bastrop State Park which is one of our favorite Texas Parks

Bentsen-Rio Grande State Park

Mission

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Bentsen-Rio Grande State Park
To get to the Hawk Tower and Rio Grande Trail you must walk about two miles from the Park Headquarters or take the tram or ride a bike. Hawk Tower is an elevated walkway with panoramic views of the surrounding brush country and the adjacent resaca and at the right time of the year you'll likely see many species of hawks that migrate through this area - best time for hawk viewing is between the last week of March and first week in April. This is a moderate two mile trail on a wide walkway through thick colima, mesquite and tepeguaje brush. The observation deck surrounded by river cane overlooks the Rio Grande and into Mexico.

Big Bend Ranch State Park

Presidio

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Big Bend Ranch State Park
The ultimate hikers paradise that is fascinating and different each time you visit. The Closed Canyon Trail is one of the few slot canyons in Texas and follows a dry creek bed from the head of the canyon to the Rio Grande. The trail is about a mile and a half, easy going for the first quarter mile, and then gets steeper with rocky drops. The scenery is breathtaking - steep sheer tall cliffs that seem to close in on you, large veins of calcite on the cliff faces, cactus growing sideways from solid rock, and lots more.

Brazos Bend State Park

Needville

 

Brazos Bend State Park

The 40 acre lake trail offers plenty of opportunities to spot many types of wildlife, lots of birds, and large nasty looking alligators. The 1.25 mile trail is excellent for a family hike with kids and they shouldn't get bored on this hike. As you hike around the shallow marshy lake you'll encounter different aquatic habitats, an observation deck, a four story observation tower that juts out over the lake, and lots of wildlife - ducks, egrets, bobcats, alligators, and more. Morning hikes are the best time to view the gators.

Caprock Canyon State Park

Quitaque

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Caprock Canyon State Park
The 90 miles of trails range from easy to difficult. Some of which is rugged terrain. The lengths range from 1 to 15 miles. A favorite is Upper Canyon Trail which has a Fern Cave on the way up.

Colorado Bend State Park

Bend

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Colorado Bend State Park
You won't believe it - along the Gorman Falls Trail is a spectacular 60 foot travertine waterfall surrounded by lush vegetation! It's got to be one of the prettiest spots in the Hill Country. Also on the three mile round trip you might spot several endangered bird species like the black-capped vireo or golden-cheeked warbler or a bald eagle soaring above the trees. The gravel trail can be rocky in spots as it meanders up and down the hills and is an easy walk down to the falls. The return can be hot and somewhat strenuous.

Dinosaur Valley State Park

Glen Rose

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Dinosaur Valley State Park
The River Ecology Trail and Track Sites 2 and 3 are the best places to see dinosaur tracks left in the mud over 113 million years ago. The trail follows along the banks of the Paluxy River and you'll find several places that are excellent for enjoying the river. Within the park are a couple fiberglass replicas of a 70 foot apatosaurus and a 45 foot tyrannosaurus rex. Dinosaur Valley State Park has some great campsites, a huge picnic area, and lots of other hiking and biking trails - one of our favorite parks. Read our review of Dinosaur Valley State Park.

Enchanted Rock State Park

Fredericksburg

 

Enchanted Rock State Park
Enchanted Rock is a 425 foot high pink granite dome that is fun and scenic to hike and there is a trail that goes straight up the face of it. At the top, catch your breath and the panoramic view of the hill country. For a more relaxed and more scenic hike, take the Loop Trail that passes through a couple different ecosystems, through the woods and brush, by a pond, and over exposed rock and past several unusual rock formations. On the back side of the main dome you can catch the Echo Canyon Trail that is a short but steep hike to the top of the dome.

Fort Richardson State Park

Jacksboro

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Fort Richardson State Park
Fort Richardson isn't like most of the Panhandle, it is gorgeous with thick strands of oak, carefully carved stone steps, prickly pear cactus, and follows a small creek. This is an easy half-mile trail with a loop along the more rustic Rumbling Spring Path that adds another half mile as it follows the opposite shore of the creek.

Franklin Mountains State Park

El Paso

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Franklin Mountains State Park
Can you image one hundred miles of rugged desert trails within El Paso's city limits? If you enjoy a difficult hike, Ron Coleman Trail along the ridgeline has a beautiful view of El Paso and the Chihuahuan Desert.

Garner State Park

Concan

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Garner State Park
With over 11 miles of trails this popular park has two of Texas' moste popular hikes - the Old Baldy Trail and the Crystal Cave Trail. If you don't mind a steep climb, the view of the Frio River is worth the hike. Read our review of Garner State Park

Huntsville State Park

Houston

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Huntsville State Park
The towering Eastt Texas pines shade the trails around the lake with a view of the water at times. The park has 21 miles of trails which you will share with bikers, dogs on leashes, and the occasional horseback rider.

Lost Maples State Natural Area

Vanderpool

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Lost Maples State Park
Lost Maples State Natural Area is unbelievable in the fall with the colorful maples. The Maple Trail follows along one bank of the Sabinal River and cuts through thick strands of maples and it's secluded with varied terrain, large boulders, and hand hewn rustic steps and railings. The East Trail follows the other side of the bank and offers a two mile leisurely hike or you can continue on for a five mile strenuous exercise.

Mother Neff State Park

Moody

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Mother Neff State Park
The Cave Trail at Mother Neff State Park is a moderately strenuous two mile hike that is very secluded and meanders through a thick forest and negotiates steep ravines. In a 40 foot ravine you'll encounter the Tonkawa Indian cave that once provided shelter and was a burial site. A pond, a sign that this area was used for hundreds of years by pioneer women to wash clothes and by the Neff family for swimming in the 19th century.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Canyon

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Palo Duro State Park
Wow - this is the place to hike in Texas. Palo Duro Canyon is the "Grand Canyon of Texas" and is the second deepest canyon in the United States - up to 20 miles wide, 120 miles long, and 800 feet deep! There are miles of trails ranging from easy to strenuous on the 30,000 acres of the park. The Lighthouse Trail is the signature trail - 5.75 mile round trip that will get your sweat glands working as it leads you to the multihued rock towering over the middle of nowhere. Lighthouse Peak is impressive and well worth the effort to get there. Palo Duro Canyon State Park has primitive camping, RV sites, and tent sites as well as 7 cabins. Several of the trails are suitable for mountain biking or horseback riding. Read our review of Palo Duro Canyon State Park.

Seminole Canyon State Park

Comstock

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Seminole Canyon State Park
This park has 10 miles of trails some of which you need a guide to hike.The views of the canyon and the Rio Grande River are spectacular. The pictorgraphs left by early canyon dwellers are an interesting site for the hiker.

Tyler State Park

Tyler

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Tyler State Park
The Lakeside Trail at Tyler State Park is a smooth and wide trail that is moderately hilly through the piney woods and circling the lake. Bring a lunch and have a picnic at any of the several picnic tables and benches along the trail. In the fall, the colors are stunning. Camping at Tyler is fantastic and there are several miles of excellent and challenging mountain bike trails. Read our review of Tyler State Park.

 

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