With such an expansive and diverse terrain, the state of Texas offers some of the best hiking trails in the country. From steep mountains to swampy grasslands, there is a wide range of trails to explore. There are over 70 national and state parks throughout the state, giving you a seemingly endless list of possibilities for those looking to experience the outdoors. I recently read this great article, which inspired me to list some of my favorite hikes from around the state of Texas.
1) Sam Houston National Forest
Located in Huntsville, Texas, Sam Houston National Forest has a spectacular 128-mile Lone Star Hiking Trail that meanders through the forest. It will take you several trips to see all the trails within the park, making it a great place for regular hiking.
2) Colorado Bend State Park
Located in Bend, Texas, this state park is home to over 32 miles of trails. Colorado Bend has a diverse terrain, featuring impressive hills, canyons, and a 60-foot tall waterfall (Gorman Falls).
3) Palo Duro Canyon
Palo Duro Canyon is located in Canyon, Texas near Amarillo. The canyon offers more than 30 miles of hiking trails. You will be able to find a number of challenging hikes as well as beautiful views and colors.
4) Wolf Mountain Trail
This hike is located in Pedernales Falls State Park, which is just west of Austin, Texas.The 7-mile loop trail is a great way to spend the day. The top of the mountain provides incredible views of the surrounding hill country.
5) Lost Maples State Natural Area
Located in Vanderpool, Texas outside of San Antonio, a hike through Lost Maples State Natural Area will have you feeling like you traveled to the northeast. The park’s name derives from the bigtooth maples; the best time to come is in the fall to witness the full display of fall colors.
6) Enchanted Rock
The Enchanted Rock, located north of Fredericksburg, is a must-see for all Texans. This giant mass of molten magma provides an extremely challenging hike. The panoramic views from the top, however, are truly worth the effort.
7) Guadalupe Peak
Located in Guadalupe Mountains National Park, 110 miles east of El Paso, you will find the highest point in Texas. While it is quite a long drive out west, the unparalleled views make it a place worth checking out. If you are up for the 3,000 feet to the top of the peak, you will be rewarded with breaktaking sights. On a clear day, you can even see the distant sierras on the other side of the border.