The land that is now called Lockhart State Park was once home to the Comanche Indians. By the late 19th century, most of the Comanches that called Texas home were either eradicated or relocated to a different area. The land was purchased in 1934 by the government and was later the home of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) for three years. From 1935 to 1938, the CCC built the park's main areas, including the trails, a swimming pool, a golf course, the fishing area, and the cabins. The park started out as a private social club until it opened its gates to the public in 1948.
Since then, the 263 acres of land has been a destination for golfers, hikers, and students from homeschool programs. The Clear Fork Creek runs right through the middle of the park, eventually flowing into Plum Creek, making fishing a lovely past time, but the water isn’t the only reason visitors go to Lockhart State Park. In the summertime, the park offers homeschool classes led by the rangers, a pool to cool off in, and a golf course to practice your winning swing. In the winter, the trails remain open, making them a great place to go hiking, birding, and geocaching when the weather is cooler.
The campground offers 20 sites with hookups available for RV and trailer use. Half of the sites have full hookups, and for the sites without hookups, a dumping station is located nearby. There are plenty of different activities that you can enjoy year-round, especially if you purchase a state park pass. Not only is the daily fee waived, but you are also eligible for other coupons and discounts to any park in the state of Texas.
The park is a 46-minute drive from Austin, Texas, and just over an hour’s drive from San Antonio, Texas. The town of Lockhart is only a nine-minute drive from the park’s entrance. On your way to the park, you can stop in town and try one of the many barbecue restaurants in the area. There are also shopping malls and small diners to keep you occupied. If you forgot to stock up on basic necessities, the large department store in town will have most of your camping needs.
The road to the park’s entrance is paved and well maintained. If you are looking for the headquarters, it will be on your right, and a parking lot will be on your left as you enter the park. After you have completed the check-in process, be sure to take a map and ask the staff about points of interest in the park. They may recommend walking rather than driving around the campground to get the full experience of the park. You can also take your bike on the trails or roads in the park.
Lockhart State Park has moderate elevation, so you won’t have to worry too much about flooding. In case of inclement weather, the park may close to put your safety first. The Clear Creek may flood or cause water damage to your RV if you remain in the park after being warned of inclement weather. The park enjoys hot summers and cool winters, with plenty of sun between each season.
For larger groups of up to 75 people, the ADA accessible group hall is available for rent, but you have to stay for at least two days. This site has everything you need to entertain any big gathering, whether it is family, friends, or a club get-together. The inside hall has tables and chairs for up to 50 people, and there is enough room to sleep 40. However, there are no beds, so bring a bedroll. Some of the amenities include water, electric, a working kitchen, heat, air conditioning, and a fireplace. They even have screened windows and ceiling fans to enjoy the Texas warmth during the cooler months. There are no microwaves or cooking utensils, and you will need to bring your own BBQ grill. The hall is near the western section of the park by the Caddy Trail and Rattlesnake Run Trail. Be sure to reserve your spot early, which can be done online up to five months in advance.
The Fairway View Campground at Lockhart State Park has full RV hookups for motorhomes and trailers with a max limit of 40 feet. Ten sites have shelters and provide a good amount of seclusion from your neighbor. The sites are in a close circle, and while you do have privacy, you may still be able to hear your neighbors walk through the shrubbery. These sites are leveled, so you won’t need a brick to level your RV. The electrical hookup offers up to 50 amps of electricity. You can cook outside on the fire ring or the BBQ smoker and eat as a family together on the large picnic tables provided by the park. You will also find comfort stations with hot showers and modern restrooms nearby. The Clear Fork Trail is nearby, offering you a chance to take a short walk around the park. You can pick up firewood, souvenirs, and other needs in the camp store. Reservations are required and can be made up to five months in advance. You can bring your furbaby with you as long as it is supervised and restrained at all times during your stay.
Clear Fork Creek Campground has 10 sites with water and electric hookups available for rigs from 30 to 40 feet in length. A dumping station is provided to make up for the lack of sewer hookups. The sites are at an incline, which means you will need a few bricks to level your RV. However, they are very spaced out, allowing you to have more privacy between you and your neighbor. The trees partially cover each lot, allowing you to have some shade from the summer sun. Your pet will enjoy coming along as well, but make sure you have it secured on a leash or otherwise restrained during your visit to the park.
Amenities included are comfort stations with hot showers, restrooms, and drinking water spigots. At each campsite, you will have a fire ring, a picnic table, a smoker, and a grill. Please note that if you wish to have a fire that you are not allowed to gather firewood; you must purchase it from the park. You can stay a limit of 14 nights at a time and may reserve a site up to five months in advance.
Be sure to pack your fishing gear in the motorhome before heading to Lockhart State Park. Clear Fork Creek has a plethora of native species of hungry fish to catch, such as bass, catfish, and sunfish. If you did forget your gear, don’t worry, you can borrow some from the office. And you don’t even need a fishing license to fish in Texas state parks, either. Whether you are fly fishing for sports fish or bottom fishing for the big cats, you will enjoy a day on the creek here.
Each year starting in September and ending in April, the park hosts classes for students in the homeschooling community. Classes are scheduled months in advance, and you can reserve your spot by calling the park office. Students can learn all about the park’s resources and gain a better understanding of how the park was constructed. Classes take a deeper dive into learning about the ecosystem in the streams, and the flora and fauna that call the park home.
More than 300 bird species call Texas home. At Lockhart State Park, different types of birds live and pass through the vicinity throughout the year, including the red-tailed hawk, the brown-headed cowbird, killdeer, barn swallows, and many others. You can pick up a list of birds that frequent the park at headquarters. Remember to bring sunscreen, binoculars, and a pair of walking boots with you to ensure you have a comfortable experience. If you're planning a birding day, explore the Persimmon Trail and pack a snack and some water for safe measures.
You can be a modern-day pirate and go hunting for treasures with your family and geocaching friends. Geocaching is easy to play and requires an adventurous spirit, a pen or pencil, robust walking boots, a GPS device, a water bottle, and a small treasure to trade. Before exploring, make sure you know the cache logging rules and regulations. Also, make sure you leave the cache area as clean as you found it to keep the adventure alive for other geocachers.
Biking is another way to enjoy the beauty of Texas nature while simultaneously getting some exercise. There are several nice trails you can bike on here. The 0.08 Creekview Trail is a nice short connector trail that runs along the creek. For a longer ride, the .25-mile Hilltop Trail is a fun way to get a good workout. Add the 0.26-mile Chisholm Trail to the 0.1-mile Comanche Loop for a fun detour before heading back on the 0.15-mile Fence-Line Trail. No matter which route you choose, be sure to wear a helmet and pads for protection and use insect repellent as well as sunscreen.
In the late 1930s, before the park opened to the public, the CCC and the Works Progress Administration built the swimming pool. Today, swimming is a favorite way for park guests to cool down during the hot months of summer. The pool is generally open from Memorial Day through the weekend after Labor Day. All park guests must pay a small fee to swim. Please remember to pack your bathing suit, sunscreen, a towel, and your flip flops. If you plan to be outside for a long time, bring a hat and sunglasses to help protect you from the sun.
In the late 1930s, the CCC built a nine-hole golf course providing more recreational options for visitors who enjoy a day on the greens. You can play a round of golf on the course and then cool off by the pool if you are playing a round or two during the summer. If you forgot your equipment, then you may rent some from the golf course's main store. There you can also pay for your game of golf and rent a golf cart to make traveling to each hole more convenient.
For your hiking enjoyment at Lockhart State Park, there are 11 trails to traverse. The trails range from easy to challenging, allowing you to explore different parts of the park. The Rattlesnake Trail is one of the tougher trails, and it leads to the recreation hall with a rugged incline. If you want to see a clear view of the park, take the Clear Fork Trail, which passes by some of the park's prettiest places. Before you hit the trails, remember to let others know where you are. It's always a good idea to take a friend with you, bring sunscreen, and stay hydrated. Pack your hiking boots, and remember to leave the trails clean on your hike.