Today’s Featured Writer: Kristie McLin
Although the Houston area is very close to Gulf Coast beaches, there are a fair number of inland beaches within a short distance, as well. If you drive north on I-45 about 65 miles from the center of Houston, you will find Huntsville State Park. My co-worker recommended it to me after she and her husband went camping and canoeing here over a weekend.
At Huntsville State Park, you can go on a nature hike, horseback ride, and play at the beach all in one day. The trails, campgrounds, and picnic areas are surrounded by tall trees that provide plenty of shade on hot sunny days. The beach is unsupervised, but the division into deeper water is clearly marked, and a diving pier is available for swimmers.
Kids can build sandcastles on the beach and then run right up to their family’s picnic table for lunch. If you forgot something, there is a very convenient store (Texas State Parks Store called “Gator Junction”) where you will find a variety of food items, sunscreen, hats, swimsuits, and books that will help you identify the birds, wildflowers, and butterflies that you are sure to see.
We went for a short nature hike with the kids (the 0.2 mile Loblolly trail), then rented a paddle boat (only $10 an hour) and enjoyed the beautiful early April day.
After coming for the day, I decided to buy a state parks pass because I am sure we will be back!