Avoid Crowds At One Of Texas' Most Underrated Lakeside State Parks Perfect For Camping

Texas is certainly a big place to explore, but sometimes, the appeal lies in discovering smaller and off-the-beaten-path stops in the state. While Texas is home to 89 state parks, according to Texas Parks and Wildlife, Lake Colorado City State Park is a rather underrated one of the bunch that's well worth exploring the next time you're here. A report by KXAN in 2023 ranked Lake Colorado City State Park among the top ten least-visited parks in the state. While some might see those numbers as a loss, travelers looking for a hidden-gem destination to enjoy where they can avoid the crowds should jump at this opportunity.

Opened to the public in 1972, Lake Colorado City State Park welcomes just over 21,000 visitors annually on average. Located in Colorado City, Texas, around 79 miles from Midland, this state park is a great place to embrace open space, time on the lake, wildlife watching, and camping too. There's a boat dock and fishing pier at your fingertips upon arrival, and entry to the park is just $4 for adults and free for children age 12 and under. Whether you're staying overnight or planning an extended getaway, Lake Colorado City State Park might just be the highlight of your camping trip to Texas.

Enjoy time on the water and the trails

When Lake Colorado City State Park is your destination in Texas for your next adventure, you'll find many on-site activities to try. The man-made lake takes center stage, and if you happen to love angling, you're in for a treat. Spanning 1,618 acres, the lake hosts sunfish, catfish, and largemouth bass, and you won't need a fishing license to cast a line from the shore or the pier.

As Texas heat begins to rise, Lake Colorado City is open for swimming, but do keep in mind that there aren't any lifeguards on-site. Visitors can also spend a leisurely afternoon kayaking or canoeing. If you don't have gear, you can rent kayaks at the park, equipped with life vests and paddles.

After you've had your fill of fun on the water, you can add time on the lakeside hiking trails to your itinerary. The Cactus Cut Trail is great for an easy stroll and is only a mile long. This one-way route offers up beautiful lake, mesquite, and cactus views. If you're a birding enthusiast, it's also a good route for keeping your eyes on the skies. If you choose to explore the Roadrunner Loop Trail, you'll follow a more challenging 2-mile route. While the terrain takes a turn for the rugged, there are options to stop at a scenic picnic overlook and Rock Ridge, which separates the lake from the pond and is great for watching wildlife.

Experience fantastic camping options right on-site

When you're taking an RV road trip to Texas, Lake Colorado City State Park has 123 campsites to choose from. While 11 of those are cabins, the majority are back-in and pull-through sites fit for RVs of varying sizes. Many come with electricity and water hookups as well as picnic tables, fire rings, lantern posts, and access to shaded shelters. No matter what camping loop you end up in, you can count on restrooms and showers within easy reach as well.

If you decide to book a cabin instead, you'll enjoy a stay that can accommodate a group of eight travelers. Each cabin comes with air conditioning and a heater for a comfortable stay in every season. Cabins are equipped with a patio and picnic table, as well as a fire ring and water and electric hookups. There's a microwave and small refrigerator to use, plus a grill, a table, and chairs. Two sets of bunk beds are found in each cabin to ensure a good night's sleep.

Once you've settled in at your chosen campsite, you'll want to make sure to take advantage of any park activities that might be going on. Throughout the year, the park hosts a variety of fun events on its calendar. Some of these include stargazing gatherings that showcase constellations in the impressive Texas sky after the sun goes down.