Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Huntsville State Park


There is plenty to do for the outdoors enthusiast at Huntsville State Park. And people do throng to this park. It is one of the closest state parks to the Houston area, so crowds from that sprawling metropolis descend on this park on weekends and holidays. But Huntsville is also home to Sam Houston State University, so students from there hit the park regularly.

The park offers all kinds of activities: hiking, biking, horseback riding, canoeing, kayaking, swimming, fishing, and camping. There are all kinds of camping options at the park, from tent camping to shelters to RV sites. There are just over 20 sites with full hookups (30 and 50 amp). We were assigned to this area, called Raven Hill Camping Area (see map), and we set up in site #20. All the sites are pull-through, but all are very unlevel both from side to side and from front to back. Make sure you have the means to level your rig before you venture to this park. This is a very hilly park, so the unlevel sites should not come as a surprise.

I know that the impetus on our state parks is to remain natural, but I was a bit surprised at the lack of maintenance at the sites. Spring rains have been plentiful in the area, it seems, and weeds around the utilities were knee high and thick. These areas, even in parks, should be maintained.

The original party girl, doing a bit of bird watching. Note the high weeds around the utilities at left.
But that doesn't take away from the park. It's really a pretty woodland park. The centerpiece of the park is Lake Raven, a small lake with crappie, perch, catfish, and bass, not to mention a few alligators. There are 2 fishing piers on the lake and 1 boat ramp. The park also has a park store, a nature center, amphitheater, stables, group pavilion, and group hall.

Fishing pier where Donna spent one afternoon.
We enjoyed watching wildlife around our camp. Numerous rabbits and squirrels scurried about, and we saw a number of birds. I only caught a glimpse of 1 deer, though, and that was on a hike. 

Woodpecker near our campsite.
This rabbit was visiting the campsite next to ours.
The mosquitoes were pretty aggressive while we were there, and the humidity was well beyond what we are accustomed to. To be honest, we were happy to leave when our 3 days were up. We've grown accustomed to the dry climate of West Texas, and we really prefer to be there.

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