Eisenhower State Park Overview:
Review and Rating of Eisenhower State Park in Denison
Eisenhower State Park is perched on rocky bluffs above the 89,000 acre Lake Texoma about 5 miles from Denison. The Park is huge and encompasses over 430 acres and has 5 different areas for camping. The Park is located a on the south east end of the Lake a couple miles from the Lake Texoma dam.
There are tent sites with water, screen shelters, full hook-up pull through sites, and regular campsites with water and electricity. The sites including the picnic area sit on a bluff above the Lake and there are some steep trails that lead down to the water.
Eisenhower State Park is named for Dwight David Eiisenhower who was born nearby and was the 34th United States president. The Park opened in 1958 and as such some of the facilities are a little dated but clean and the Park is very well maintained. The main roads around the Park and through the campground are paved and the individual site parking pads are crushed stone.
On our last visit in July 2015, the Park had just reopened after some significant flooding on Lake Texoma. FM 1310 was still closed, Eisenhower Yacht Club was not accessible, and the swimming area and boat ramp were closed due to the high water. And instead of the normal beautiful blue lake, the water was a dirty brown! But all of that should change in a month or so.
Amenities and Fun Things To Do:
There are three sections for camping plus an area with screened shelters. Some of the sites are long pull throughs and others are short back-ins. The sites range from flat and level to gently sloping which will require jacks or blocks to get level. Some sites are shaded all day, others shaded in the morning or afternoon. The Park Ranger has a list and description for each of the sites so you can tell them what you're looking for and they can help you pick a site that fits your needs. The vast majority of the sites are large, heavily treed, and very spacious. None of the sites are on the water but several have a limited view through the trees. Some tent sites sit on the edge of a bluff overlooking the lake with great views. Each camping area has restrooms with showers - they are very clean but dated.
Armadillo Hill Camping area has 57 sites with water and electric. Each site has a picnic table, lantern pole, and fire ring/grill and most have some cute little bunnies! Some are level and some are very short but all are spacious. All are shaded with trees surrounding most of the site.
Bois D'Arc Ridge Camping area has 49 pull through sites (the half circle type pull through) with water, electric (30 and 50 AMP), and sewer hook-ups. The sites are mostly level and have a picnic table, lantern post, and fire ring/grill.
There are 36 screened shelters in the Deer Haven area and several are along the bluff with a limited view of the Lake through the trees. Each screened shelter has a picnic table and fire ring/grill
There are two areas for tent camping (Fossil Ridge and Elm Point) with 44 tent sites with a picnic table and water. The sites are very spacious and some have tent pads. Several of the sites in Elm Point sit on the edge of a bluff overlooking the Lake. All of the sites are well treed and spacious.
Some of the other amenities at Eisenhower State Park include:
- several playgrounds with swing sets
- an overflow camping area
- horseshoe pit
- State Park store with tee shirts to souvenirs
- two lighted fishing piers and a fish cleaning station
- two dump stations
- lots of wild life and cute little bunnies running through the campsites
- boat ramp
- designated swimming area
Bring your ATV, mountain bike, and hiking shoes and enjoy the over 4.5 miles of trails that include:
- Armadillo Hill Interpretive Trail (rated easy) which is .81 miles and can be done in about 30 minutes
- Ike's Hike & Bike Trail is 3.2 miles of rolling hills through the campgrounds and along the bluff overlooking the lake - lots of ups and downs and some technically difficult portions for mountain bikes, the trail is rated easy to moderate, except for a very rugged and daunting section, and it takes about 4 hours to ride the entire trail round trip
- Chinquapin Ridge is a 3.3 mile ATV trail with various levels of difficulty as it winds through forests and across ridges - there is also a novice ATV practice area
Eisenhower State Park participates in the Angler Education Texoma is well known as an excellent lake for striped bass, smallmouth, and catfish.and during your stay you can borrow rods, reels and tackle boxes with hooks, sinkers and bobbers.
Several nature and environmental programs, that are put on by the Park Rangers, can be enjoyed throughout the year.
Eisenhower Yacht Club which is in the Park rents Hobie Cat kayaks, standup paddleboards, and pontoon boats and they have overnight boat slips for rent.
A Typical Texas Outsider Day:
On our most recent trip we stayed one night at Eisenhower State Park on our way back to Georgetown from a music festival in Oklahoma. So we didn't have time to do a lot but we did enjoy a walk through the campround and some of the trails and a good meal and couple margaritas at North Rig Grill in nearby Denison.
On previous stays at Eisenhower State Park we have enjoyed mountain biking the 3.2 mile Ike's Hike and Bike Trail. We have also played a couple of the nearby golf courses - Tangelwood and Northern Challenge are two of our favorites. And we have enjoyed swimming at the beach and exploring the Lake with our boat.
Read our review of Lake Texoma to learn more about the lake and what it has to offer.
Cool Nearby Activities:
Choctaw Casino is about 30 minutes north, Denison and Sherman are within 15 minutes and both have several things to do and some good restaurants, and there are some fun golf courses nearby - see this golf course map to find a nearby course and to read our reviews.
If you can make sure you spend some time on Lake Texoma - you can rent a boat, hire a fishing guide, fish from the shoreline, or swim.
- Overall Rating:
- Scenic Beauty:
- Things To Do:
Additional Pictures of Eisenhower State Park
Texas Outside uses a tough rating scale and it’s difficult for a campground to get a “10”. Each park is rated on:
- Scenic Beauty: a campground that is flat with no trees or character gets a “1” and hills, lots of trees, beautiful lake site, and lush ground cover gets a “10”
- Park Condition: the cleaner, well kept, and maintained campgrounds receive high scores
- Amenities: we are looking for lots of amenities like restrooms, dump stations, playgrounds, boat ramps, shelters, concession stand, rental toys, and more.
- Campsites: low scores are given for sites that are right next to each other (good for getting to know your neighbors, but not what we’re looking for when we’re camping); have no lantern holder, no water or electricity, no fire pit, no grill, or no picnic table (or it’s rotten wood); have no trees and no view; the ground cover is crushed rock (my bare feet hate that stuff!); and they require a lot of work to get your rig level.
- Things To Do: Bonus points are given for campgrounds that offer lots of fun things to do at the park or very nearby – this includes: biking, hiking, climbing, boating, entertainment, golf, swimming, fishing, volleyball, horseshoes, and more