Spring is usually a time of hope and adventure. After the long winter months finally come to an end, the warmer months of springtime offers us the opportunity to rediscover our love for all things outdoors. However, with the COVID-19 pandemic putting a halt to many activities worldwide, your sense of adventure may feel depleted or your need to explore may be more present than ever.
Fortunately, going outside while keeping a safe distance from others is something we can still do in these unprecedented times. Camping underneath the stars or going on a hike gives you a chance to get out of the house and breathe in fresh air. Going outside can be therapeutic and is recommended for everyone’s mental and physical health.
The Brazos River Authority’s reservoirs and parks have reopened to provide the opportunity to escape the indoors, enjoy the beautiful spring weather and offer relief from these stressful times. From Possum Kingdom’s miles worth of trails to Lake Limestone’s prime fishing opportunities, there are a variety of ways to explore our reservoirs.
However, it is all our responsibility to stay socially distant while exploring our reservoirs to ensure that they can stay open during this time. The BRA has taken extensive measures to safeguard its own staff and those who visit the public access areas at our reservoirs. The public restrooms at the reservoirs have been closed to protect our employees. Porta toilets have been placed at all our reservoirs and are routinely cleaned and replaced. All BRA Lake Offices are also closed to the public but remain operational. While our parks remain open at this time, we will continue to coordinate with city and county officials at our reservoirs as to whether orders to close public use facilities will be instituted. Should the decision be made locally to temporarily close parks, we will follow those recommendations.
Most importantly, everyone must follow Texas Governor Abbott's order to wear face masks or coverings, gather in groups of no more than five people and keep at least six feet distance from other people outside their immediate household. Routinely wash your hands for at least 20 seconds and stay home if you feel sick. If we all do our part and practice these safety measures, we can continue to enjoy our beautiful reservoirs and the recreational opportunities that they offer.
POSSUM KINGDOM LAKE
Located west of the Dallas and Fort Worth metroplex, Possum Kingdom Lake offers almost 220 miles of recreational shoreline and stunning scenery, including the iconic Hell’s Gate Formation. Visitors from all over Texas visit Possum Kingdom Lake to fish, water ski, hike, mountain bike and even scuba dive.
Possum Kingdom Lake has 10 lakeside parks and seven boat ramps, with 16 miles of hiking and biking trails that crisscrosses the lake’s central peninsula. Nearly all the parks at Possum Kingdom Lake are free to use year-round. The parks feature ample camping sites and sheltered picnic tables from the wooded areas right up to the lake front and are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Each of Possum Kingdom Lake’s parks offer different sets of features, including fire rings, cooking grills and more.
Spending time on the water is a great way to enjoy the outdoors while social distancing, with boating being just one of the many ways you can enjoy the glistening waters of Possum Kingdom Lake. The BRA provides several boat ramps and courtesy docks in and around the public use areas. Whether you like to fish or water ski around, there is plenty of room to do it on Possum Kingdom’s 17,700 acres of water.
Texas anglers know that Possum Kingdom Lake is a prime location to cast their lines. There are plenty of different types of fish to catch, like largemouth, striped and white bass, white crappie and channel and blue catfish. Many people also like to fish in the Brazos River just below Possum Kingdom’s Morris Sheppard Dam.
The extensive network of hiking and biking trails goes across Possum Kingdom Lake’s central peninsula, connecting the reservoir’s public areas with 16 miles worth of paths. The wide trails are suitable for hikers with a wide range of abilities, averaging a 5 to 20-degree slope. You can enjoy the beautiful sights and sounds of nature along the winding trails or at one of the 19 lookouts. A part of the trail winds to the top of Johnson Peak, where there is a scenic rest area is equipped with benches.
Located in Hood County, Lake Granbury offers beautiful scenery and expansive opportunities to explore the great outdoors. The reservoir has 121 miles of shoreline and six lakeside parks that can be used for picnicking, fishing and camping. Each park has a unique combination of amenities, from courtesy docks, designated swimming areas, fishing piers and more. Observation Point even offers a scenic overlook that displays Lake Granbury’s beauty.
With stunning views and proper amenities, Lake Granbury is a prime camping location in North Texas. All the camp sites at Lake Granbury have accompanying picnic tables and grills to ensure a comfortable camping experience for all who visit. Some parks even offer shaded picnic tables to shield out the hot Texas sun. All parks at Lake Granbury are free to use and require no reservation.
If boating is your activity of choice, Lake Granbury is the perfect place to spend a long day on the water. There are free public boat ramps available at different points across Lake Granbury. You’ll want to bring your fishing rod—striped bass, sunfish, crappie and more species are common catches at the lake. Several fishing piers and courtesy docks are also located along the shoreline to provide a complete fishing experience for anglers.
Located on the upper Navasota River in Limestone, Robertson, and Leon counties, Lake Limestone has some of the best fishing in Central Texas. Its flooded timber and high amount of aquatic vegetation provides the perfect environment for largemouth and white bass, crappie, and catfish. Anglers can spend hours and hours on the waters of Lake Limestone
Lake Limestone offers four parks across its shorelines with camping and picnic facilities, along four boat launching ramps and three courtesy docks. With prime fishing opportunities and scenic waters, Lake Limestone is the perfect place to take your personal boat and enjoy a day out on the water. Be sure to pack a lunch and eat at one of the picnic tables that are also available at each of the boat ramps. All the public use areas at Lake Limestone are free and open year-round.
For a comprehensive list of each of the Lake Limestone’s amenities, click here.
For a comprehensive list of each of Possum Kingdom Lake’s amenities, click here.
For a comprehensive list of each of Lake Granbury’s amenities, click here.
To learn about the steps that the BRA is taking to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, click here.