In order to reach my goal of visiting all 93 Texas State Parks this year I’ll have to visit about 9 parks month. Luckily, some state parks are in close proximity to one another, so that makes things a bit easier for me.
Such is true for Lockhart State Park, which is a short drive (about 20 miles) from Palmetto State Park. The drive between the two parks was an easy one so if you want a full weekend of fun, I’d recommend planning a visit to both Lockhart State Park and Palmetto back to back.
Lockhart State Park is a bit smaller than other state parks I have visited in the past, but that does not mean that it is boring there. The day use area was quite nice and had a large playground, basketball court, and picnic tables and BBQ pits for cookouts.
One especially interesting fact about Lockhart State Park is that there is a golf course within the park. The course is 9 holes and the park has golf clubs and electric carts for rent for those who would rather not deal with the hassle of bringing their own along.
The tent camping sites ($18, nightly) at this park were really cute and nestled up against the Clear Fork Creek. For families with children who cannot swim or would be concerned about the vicinity to the water, there are also RV sites ($21, nightly) that are further from the creek that are quite nice.
Just as with Palmetto, Lockhart State Park is one of the parks that was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930’s (to learn more about the CCC in relation to the Texas State Parks system click HERE). As you go through the park you can still see their work on the recreation hall and the dams throughout the park grounds.
Though there aren’t a ton of them, the hiking trails in this park were quite pretty, even in January. I imagine that by Summer time, the parks busiest season, they are gorgeous.
One big draw for park visitors in the Summer is the swimming pool near the park office ($2 per person). Also built by the CCC, the pool is quite large and is open from Memorial Day through the end of Summer (The pool is closed on Tuesdays for maintenance). I didn’t grab a photo of the pool on this visit because it was empty and I felt like no one would really want to see a photo of a large cement hole.
A fun new offering for kids visiting state parks beginning in early June 2014 will be the Junior Ranger Program. Parents can check out Junior Ranger Explorer Packs for their children to use while visiting one of 50 state parks that are participating in the program. Each Explorer Pack comes with a pair of binoculars, magnifying glass, animal tracking key, sketchbook, pencil, crayons and watercolors, colorful guides to identify the flowers, birds, butterflies, trees, rocks, wildlife and plants, and a journal to record what they see and learn. Plus, there’s room in the pack to carry your own water and snacks!*
So, even if you have never taken your kids out to visit a Texas State Park before now, this Summer would be the perfect time to start! Lockhart State Park is also a great “starter park” for anyone who is not really used to serious camping or outdoor activities because it is small, easy to get around with children, and is not in a remote location (making it easy to acquire additional supplies or head into town to eat at a restaurant).
We left Lockhart State Park just as the sun was starting to set and as I was driving down the park road to leave I spotted this rainbow. It was truly the perfect end to an awesome weekend full of state park goodness!
Day admission to the park is just $3 for anyone 13 or older. Kids are 12 and under are FREE, which I love!
For more information on Lockhart State Park or to plan your trip visit: https://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/state-parks/lockhart
You can also make park reservations by calling (512) 389-8900.
3 parks down, 90 to go!
Disclosure: I covered all admission and travel expenses to visit this state park. This post is not sponsored in any way.
**This post is part of an ongoing series where I hope to visit all 93 Texas State Parks in 2014. I would LOVE for you to follow along as we embark on this incredible (and perhaps crazy!) Life List goal of mine. You can follow our adventures as they happen in real time by following me on Instagram and with the #llftravels hashtag.**