Looking at the area there were a number of state parks in the area and in our plans to hit each and every state park in Texas we started making our plans.
Our first visit was to Dinosaur Valley State Park. Going here was for my grandson, Hunter, as he wants to be a paleontologist. We got all types of pictures and information about the park now his mom and dad is going to have to take him, which I am sure they will love us for bring all the information to Hunter. There is some great camping spots both for tent and RV parking with a real nice day use area. There are all types of hiking trails everywhere at this park and they do take you along the trail that dinosaurs used years ago. There are places along the trails and in the river banks where you can actually see the footprints of the dinosaurs from years back. If you are interested in the history of dinosaurs and love to hike this is a great park for you. There are at least 12 trails to take that can take you up to 20 minutes to 3.5 hours to hike, so the trails are set up for the beginner to the experienced hiker.
One of neatest thing about going to these area is also getting to visit a lot of the small towns around the parks. Dinosaur Valley State Park is located just outside of a town called Glen Rose. This is the county seat for Somervell County and was established in 1849. It is still one of the old square courtyard towns and is really unique. There are a lot of old buildings that are antique stores, general stores, and local places to eat. There is a couple of museum there about the history of the area which are very interesting and some of the things brought back a lot of old memories for Fred and me. It is a beautiful old town, one if you are in the area you will want to see.
The next state park we went to, I must admit it is probably for the most part the prettiest park we have seen. As we drove into the town outside the park we were not impressed and really did not think the park would be much. We headed up a “mountain” (at least for central Texas) and more we traveled up the scenery changed and wow we were shocked. As you drive into the park it is really nice and the visitor center sits on the edge of tree line cliff. The camping area has full hookup for RVers and has great tent camping area. The screen shelters are down the cliff and overlook the lake and are just beautiful. The park sits around Lake Meridian which has some great fishing. It is just amazing to drive up a “mountain” and find such a great lake at the top with such a wonderful state park around it. There is also some great birding in the area. Again a wonderful state park to visit and stay at. I got so caught up in looking around that I forgot to take pictures – which is unusual for me
The next day we started out again determined to get to all the state parks in the area we could. This time we headed to Cleburne State Park. Again this was a very unique place in that this is a spring fed lake at the top of the hill with a lot of beautiful views. The lake has great fishing and there are beavers up near the spring. Great RV parking sites with tent pads and screen shelters also available. The drive there is really neat and is up the hill from the City of Cleburne. There are lots of bike and hike trails that are marked and a great group area also. Another stop if you can and in the area, you will not be sorry.
After being at Lake Whitney for two weeks we finally got the slide to the coach fixed and reverted back to our original planned trip. Even though we had not gone to the places we planed we got to see other places we had not and really enjoyed the area. Our plan now was to head to Fairfield Lake State Park so onward and forward.
We had been to Fairfield and drove around before so we were somewhat familiar with the park. It is a large park on a even larger lake that sits by an electric plant. Because of this the waters of the lake stay warm year round so the fishing is great. There are even some fishing tournament here during the middle of the winter as the water is warm enough the bass still are biting. The park itself is just great with lots of wildlife and the RV sites are large. We stayed here for four days and loved our visit there. There are again lots of hiking and biking trails, great fishing just from the bank and wonderful sunsets. You will enjoy your stay here as it is just off I-45 at the through the City of Fairfield.
This was the last state park we were going to hit on this trip as we now had to go into Nacogdoches/Lufkin. To be continued. . . . . . .