Sitting only an hour away from Austin, Texas, you’ll find Inks Lake State Park. This park is lively in the summertime, when temperatures reach into the high 90’s. It’s hot, but Inks Lake will cool you down. The possibilities are endless with swimming, fishing, boating, and even scuba diving all available right here. The lake’s water levels tend to stay pretty constant throughout the year, so they keep the lake open year-round. This means you can still take the boat out in the winter if you’re up for it. Lake activities aren’t the only thing you can do here though. You can go hiking and picnicking, or simply enjoy the nature around you.
This park has been serving citizens since 1950, when it first opened. It took ten years to get this park rolling, and it was the Civilian Conservation Corps that started it. When funding was cut though, the project was abandoned within the first year and was not picked back up until several years later. The State Parks Board took it over and made it into the beautiful park that it is today. Now, Inks Lake State Park is the perfect vacation destination for any RV camper.
Inks Lake State Park is located in Burnet, Texas which is an easy drive from Austin and San Antonio. The park is located three miles down Park Road 4 off State Highway 29. The park is not in a remote location, though it may feel that way during your stay. If in need of supplies that cannot be found at the park, you can find convenience stores within a 15 to 20-minute drive.
While much of the drive to the park is simple, there are spots where you should use caution. When first turning onto the park road, there are a few rolling hills that limit visibility. Further down, the road has several large curves, so be sure to slow down. Once inside the park, the roads are easy to navigate for any vehicle type.
During the busier season, you’ll need to keep in mind that once the park gets crowded, it closes down temporarily. If you’ve made camping reservations, you’ll still be allowed in, so you’ll be guaranteed a place to put your RV. You might not be able to find much parking beyond the campground.
There are parking areas near the fishing piers, boat ramp, and trailheads for passenger vehicles. If your campsite is located away from these attractions, you can drive, walk, or hop on your bike.
At Inks Lake State Park, you’ll find that there are lots of options for RV campers. If you’re bringing a smaller RV, you’ll do well at the campsites that have water hookups only. There are 49 of these sites, and each one will allow up to 8 people per site, but only hold one RV that’s less than 26 feet in length.
If your RV is larger than this, or if you prefer to have electric hookups, there are 125 other sites to choose from. You’ll be able to find a site big enough for any size RV, and you’ll have 30 and 50 amp hookups available. These sites are a little more expensive than the others, but they definitely offer more. You’ll also have water hookups with these as well, and you’ll be close to multiple bathrooms. Each campsite also has a picnic table and fire ring or grill for your convenience.
If you wish to leave the RV behind for this trip and try something a little more backwoods, you can choose to come tent camping. There are four walk-in sites available that do have electricity and water. These sites can accommodate four people and one vehicle. There are also nine primitive campsites that you’ll need to hike a little over a mile and a half to reach. These sites do not have water, but there is a primitive toilet available. You can have up to four people at each primitive site as well.
Be sure that if you’re doing this kind of camping, you come fully prepared. Bring plenty of food and water for the duration of your stay, but pack light because you’ll be carrying everything a long way before you get there. Primitive camping can be an excellent way to lose yourself in all of the nature of Inks Lake State Park.
There’s no doubt that summer in Texas is very hot, so what better way is there to cool off than to jump into a cool lake? There are plenty of places to dip into the water, and you’ll feel so refreshed by it. Cliff jumping is popular at Devil’s Waterhole, but swim at your own risk. Keep in mind though that there are no lifeguards on duty here, but there is lots of fun to be had.
You can take your boat out on Inks Lake whenever you please. There’s a boat ramp for you to use, and even a boathouse and dock that was built in the 1930’s. Relax by cruising around the lake, or wade far out and dip your fishing pole into the water for a few catches.
Inks Lake is the perfect place to come to if you’re looking for a great place to try your hand at canoeing, kayaking, or paddle boating. They have a big no-wake zone set aside just for paddlers, making it a good spot for beginners. You can rent any of these boats at the park store as well.
Escape from the heat of the day by poking your nose into the park store. Here, you’ll find camping supplies, drinks and snacks, and even souvenirs for you to take home with you after you leave. Beside the store, you’ll find Sweet Marley’s Trailer, where you can get all kinds of goodies - snow cones, rootbeer floats, nachos, and much more.
If you have kids and have brought them along with you on your RV vacation, they’ll be happy to find out that there is a program made just for them. You can pick up a free activity journal for them to work on while they’re here, and even borrow a fun explorer pack. This is a great way for your child to learn while they’re here.
There are nine miles of hiking trails at Inks Lake State Park, which feature rocky hills and lush forest. When you come hiking during the off season, there are a few benefits that you won’t have at other times. You won’t have to worry about running into big groups of people, and you won’t have to fight the heat as much, which can be a big plus.
Make the short trek to Devil’s Waterhole to take in the beautiful canyon and go for a dip in the water below. Head down the Lake Trail to encounter vistas overlooking Inks Lake or the Fisherman’s Trail to find some great fishing spots along the shoreline. Many of the trails intersect, allowing you to extend your hike and take your own route through the trails.
If you’re looking for the perfect place to hold a family reunion, you’ll find just what you need here at Inks Lake State Park. There is a picnic pavilion here that can hold up to 25 people, and it also has parking available. It’s also covered in case it rains, and overlooks the lake for a wonderful view.
Geocaching is like the modern day version of a treasure hunt. There are many caches hidden all through the park, and you can make it your job to find them all. You’ll need to download the GPS coordinates on your phone, then get out there and start searching for those caches.
There is a volleyball court here in the park that is open to everyone, and when you come during the off season, you can enjoy a competitive game without having to compete with the heat as well. This is a great way to improve team-building skills and have some fun while exercising.
This park is the perfect place to come fishing. There are two fishing piers and a boat ramp that you can fish from any time of the year, and you don’t even need a fishing license to do so. If fishing from land or the fishing piers inside the park, a fishing license is not required. But because the lake is not fully enclosed inside the state park, a fishing license is required when out on the water. Some of the fish that you might catch includes bass, catfish, and sunfish. There’s even a fish cleaning station you can use afterwards.