As you know “everything is bigger in Texas”, so are the chances to find a perfect spot for fall camping.
The fall season is around the corner! That means Texans can finally get themselves ready for some camping adventures that the summer heat has been preventing them from. Falling orange leaves in the national parks and lakesides welcome adventurers with open arms to relax and get away from city life for some days and enjoy their time in the lap of nature. Cool mornings, tolerable sun, and chilly evenings around campfires are worth the hassle.
It’s time to dust off your hiking shoes, pull your air pad & sleeping bags, and prepare your backpacks for amazing camping adventures in the fall.
Despite not having a high reputation for camping, Texas has many beautiful fall camping sites worth exploring. We’re going to list a few of them along with pictures so that you can pick your first camping destination for the coming fall season.
We’ll separately list down the camping spots in West, East, and Central Texas, along with a brief description of the terrain. Let’s start with the west.
Also known as God’s country - a rich terrain having vast lands, rivers, mountains, and an infinite sky. The sun-baken earth and deserts of west Texas have a lot to offer to adventurers and backpackers.
Big Bend National Park: Top of the list is the Big Bend national park, situated in the northern Chihuahuan desert in the southwestern Trans-Pecos. It has 4 designated campsites. You can sleep under the stars and enjoy the fantastic night sky. The national park has a lot to offer to hikers of every skill level. The area is home to many different species of wildlife including scorpions, centipedes, snakes, black bears, javelina, kit foxes, sheep, mules, ringtails, etc. So plan accordingly!
Guadalupe Mountains National Park: A hidden gem, established to protect the largest Permian Fossil Reef in the world, and home to the 4 highest peaks of Texas. Situated 50 miles away from Carlsbad. Ideal for hikers as the 100 miles of thru-hiking trail of Guadalupe Ridge extends all the way to Carlsbad Caverns National Park.
Due to its foliage, it has a spectacular landscape and is Texans’ favorite fall camping destination. Diversity of wildlife can be found, such as; kit foxes, deer, lions, bobcats, lizards, etc.
Don’t forget to carry wildlife-proof food storage containers because you may encounter scavenging javelinas or black beers.
Palo Duro Canyon State Park: 120 miles long and 20 miles wide country’s 2nd largest canyon, the Pala Duro canyon state park is situated 25 miles from Amarillo. It offers adventurers and hikers twenty thousand acres of dramatic landscape containing hiking and biking trails and campgrounds. Don’t forget to purchase your day / overnight reservations in advance to avoid any hassle.
Central Texas also has something to offer to fall camping enthusiasts. Colorado Bend state park and Lost Maples natural area make for good camping destinations in the fall season.
Colorado Bend State Park: Situated at 2 hrs drive from northwest Austin, this park is spread over 5 thousand acres. What makes it an ideal camping destination is the vast network of caves and the Gorman Falls which happen to be the highest waterfall in Texas. It also offers paddling, hiking, and fishing opportunities in the fall.
If you’re a spelunker and want to explore Colorado Bend Caves then don’t forget to book with www.cbcaves.com.
Lost Maples State Natural Area: A splendid camping destination, originally established to protect Uvalde Bigtooth Maples, situated 2-hrs from San Antonio and 3-hrs from Austin. It also offers excellent fishing opportunities without requiring any permit and also the paddling & hiking trails as well. Plan for a few days and explore the historical towns in the region, crystalline rivers, swimming holes, and also the breweries & distilleries.
You can find a variety of wildlife, including; wild turkeys, white-tailed deer, gray foxes, armadillos, axis deer, and also feral pigs.
Known for the longleaf pine forests, bayous, cypress swamps, and Spanish moss - this part of the state has a lot to offer, especially for fishing and canoeing enthusiasts. Don’t forget to follow the safety recommendations of Texas Parks and Wildlife because you may find alligators here.
Let’s get to know some of the top camping destinations in this region.
Village Creek State Park: Situated 10 miles from Beaumont and 85 miles from Houston, at the edge of Big Thicket National Preserve. Known for its terrain diversity, having multiple walk-in sites and 21 miles of paddling trail of the Village Creek.
Sandbars along the Neches River and Village Creek are perfect for primitive camping. Don’t forget to obtain your free permit beforehand. Similarly, you will need a state permit for fishing on the waterways.
Caddo Lake State Park: situated 11 miles from the border of Louisiana, this is Texas’s only natural lake that has 46 camping spots for everyone looking for a peaceful time around Cypress trees, bayous, and swamps along with the woodland hiking trails.
It’s an amazing spot for fishing because the lake has 70+ species of 50+ miles of waterways. Wildlife, such as beavers, nutria, and swamp rats are in plenty. Some bird species such as hawks, loons, and woodstrokes are also found commonly.