Miles of sandy lakeshore, thick oak forests, and modern RV camping facilities are just a few of the perks that await you at Lake Tawakoni State Park. Located just east of the Dallas Fort Worth area in northeast Texas, you'll be able to trade big city living for the natural surroundings the park provides.
Named after the 38,000-acre Lake Tawakoni, the park offers guests a chance to swim, fish, and boat along the water. There are also miles of trails to be explored, either by foot or via bike. If you're lucky, you may spot some of the park's full-time residents while wandering the trails, such as cougars, armadillos, or over 200 species of birds. Other opportunities for recreation can be found in geocaching, various ranger programs, and picnicking along the lake.
The climate at Lake Tawakoni varies drastically by season, with highs in the summer reaching nearly 100 degrees, and lows in the winter dipping down to the 30s. Luckily, the lake provides a cool oasis during the warm summer months, and the RV campground offers full hookups so you can stay warm during the winter. Over 70 sites are available for RVs and trailers during all four seasons, so when you're in this neck of the woods, don't hesitate to park the campervan for a night or two and enjoy all this Texas park has to offer.
Just 50 miles east of Dallas, Texas, Lake Tawakoni is a breeze to navigate, even for big rigs. The park's proximity to the large metropolitan area makes it easy to get off the grid without venturing too far off of the beaten path. From Dallas, both I-20 and I-30 will get you close to the park, and the park entrance is located off of FM 2475. This two-lane road is paved and does not have any considerable twists or turns. The park can also be accessed from County Road 3558, but those maneuvering large vehicles should avoid this narrow, one-way road. Once inside the park, roads are wide and paved, with plenty of space for RVs and trailers to navigate to their campsite. There are no eateries inside of the park, but you'll find plenty of places to dine, gas up the motorhome, and even visit museums just minutes away.
Visitors to Lake Tawakoni State Park will find ample parking. Guests will find parking near the showers, the beach, and trailheads. Parking is also available at each camping loop and near the amphitheater.
When you bring the motorhome to Lake Tawakoni State Park, you'll be able to camp in comfort at 72 RV and trailer friendly sites. Two loops offer 16 full-hookup sites, and the remaining sites are equipped with water and electrical hookups. Each site is also equipped with a lantern post, a picnic table, and a fire ring. Some sites have lake access, and all are close to restrooms with showers. Additional parking can be found near the campground and in other areas throughout the park, and a dump station is located near the entrance. This pet-friendly campground is open year-round, with reservations available up to 12 months in advance.
If you couldn't secure a spot at Lake Tawakoni State Park, there are a few alternative RV camping options in the surrounding area. Purtis Creek State Park is about 40 miles to the south of the park and offers 59 water and electric hookups to overnight guests. Both Tyler State Park and Cooper Lake State Park sit about an hour away from Lake Tawakoni to the south and north, respectively. Tyler Lake State Park is equipped with 79 RV and trailer friendly sites, some with full hookups and the rest with water and electric. Cooper Lake State Park is the largest option in the area, with hundreds of water and electric sites available.
If you're camping with a large group at Lake Tawakoni State Park, one primitive group campsite is available. The site requires about a 100-yard hike in and can accommodate up to 48 people. There is no water are vehicles are not allowed, but the site is equipped with six lantern hooks, a large fire ring, six picnic tables, and a dumpster. There is also a designated parking area for the group site, allowing you to have the rig parked nearby.
Whether you're an avid hiker or just looking to stretch your legs after a long ride in the Class A, there are almost five miles of multi-use trails available at Lake Tawakoni State Park. Routes vary in length and difficulty, so hikers of all skill levels will be able to find a trail that suits them. Farkleberry Trail is an easy, half-mile hike that is able to connect to three other trails in the park. For a more challenging trek, check out Spring Point Branch Trail or the Osage Orange Trail.
With more than five miles of sandy shoreline, you won't want to forget to pack your bathing suit in the Airstream when you visit Lake Tawakoni State Park. Summer months can get extremely hot, so you'll be glad for the relief that the lake provides. A swimming beach is located on the east side of the park, and you could easily spend a whole day splashing in the water, soaking up some sun on the shore, or picnicking at one of the many tables located nearby. There are also two parking lots conveniently located in the area. If you prefer to be out on the water rather than in it, a four-lane boat dock is situated just across from the swimming beach.
If you're looking to explore the park uniquely during your RV getaway, consider heading out for a modern-day treasure hunt. Geocaching involves using GPS coordinates to uncover hidden spoils dispersed in various locations around the park. It's the perfect activity for the whole family, and all you'll need is a GPS enabled device, a pencil to sign your name once you find the booty, and a sense of adventure. Be sure to bring some small trinkets along as well to replace the treasure you take. Ask a park ranger for more details if you're interested in participating in geocaching during your stay.
Various picnic tables are scattered throughout the park, most of which offer sweeping views of the beautiful Lake Tawakoni. Many of the tables are located near the swimming beach, with plenty of extra parking nearby. Restrooms can also be found in the area. For a more private picnicking experience, each campsite is equipped with its own personal table. If you find yourself running low on food or other supplies, the Lake Tawakoni Trading Post sells ice, snacks, cold drinks, firewood, and more.
Lake Tawakoni State Park has nearly five miles of multi-use trails just waiting to be explored. The longest and most satisfying loop for mountain biking is the Blackjack Trail. Named for the giant blackjack oaks that have dotted the route for more than 50 years, this moderate trail winds through a thickly forested area and is about one and a half miles in length. To extend your ride, both the Osage Orange Trail and the Farkleberry Trail connect to the loop. Spring and fall are the best times of year to take a ride through the park, as the temperatures are moderate and the park is less crowded.
Both kids and adults can take part in one of the many ranger-led programs that Lake Tawakoni State Park offers throughout the year. Guided hikes, nature talks, and group activities are just a few examples of some of the programs that the park offers. For the young outdoor enthusiasts, Junior Ranger programs and workbooks are available. To learn about what events are taking place during your RV vacation, talk to a park ranger, or stop in the park headquarters.
At nearly 40,000 acres, Lake Tawakoni is an angler's paradise. The most common catches from this large reservoir include catfish, white bass, and hybrid and striped bass. You also have a fair chance of reeling in both crappie and largemouth bass. You can cast out either from the shore or by boat on the lake itself, and youngsters looking to participate can try their luck in the kid's fishing pond located near the park entrance. There are also four boat ramps available for use, along with a fish cleaning station and fishing gear rentals for those who didn't pack their own tackle and poles along in the Sprinter. No fishing license is required in Texas state parks as long as you stick to casting out from the shoreline.
Lake Tawakoni is home to a unique variety of wildlife, so don't forget to pack the camera and binoculars along in the pop-up. If you tread lightly along the park's trails, you may catch sight of a bobcat, beaver, armadillo, turtle, or mink. As always, be sure to practice wild animal encounter safety, and never approach or provoke any animals you come across. Birders can also enjoy the trails—over 200 species of birds have been spotted within the park, including a number of rare gulls, glaucus, long-tailed jaegers, and black-legged kittiwake. For your best chance at spotting any of these rare birds, head to the Spring Point Trail.