Lake Livingston State Park
Lake Livingston State Park is a Texas State Park located in the east Texas pines along the shores of 90,000 acre Lake Livingston, in Livingston, Texas. Lake Livingston is about an hour north of Houston and is the second largest inland lake in Texas.
This Texas State Park is very picturesque. At least it was when we stayed there between Christmas and New Year's Day in 2011. Early winter is definitely a beautiful time of year in the "piney woods" area of Texas.
We stayed in the Piney Shores camping area. There were several sites that had direct access to the lake and many more that were right across the road (like ours) that had lake access as well as beautiful lake views.
We experienced some diverse weather during our three day stay. On the first day, the temperature was just below freezing, but clear and dry. By the afternoon on the second day, the temperature warmed up to almost 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
On the third day we woke up to fog that was so thick, water dripping from the trees sounded like light rain, from the inside of our RV. It lasted almost the whole day. On the last day, dense fog rolled in off of the lake at sunrise, but lifted after about 30 minutes, and the temperature warmed to about 70 degrees.
Recent rain left large puddles along the equestrian trail that runs through the .95 mile Pineywoods Nature Trail. The air was cool and moist on that late December day, and hiking through the woods of east Texas was a great place to be.
Along the trail, a wooden bridge crosses Wild Plum Creek. It was the setting for a nice picture, so we stopped to take in the scenery and enjoy the sounds and smells of nature.
There weren't any ducks in the Duck Pond (below) while we were there - I'm guessing the cold weather pushed them a little further south.
The Nature Trail also visits the Butterfly Garden. As with the ducks, there were no butterflies in the Butterfly Garden during our visit. Winter isn't exactly the butterfly season...
The Pineywoods Nature Trail also features well maintained boardwalks that make hiking along the trail easy and mud free.
Down at the lake across from the park store a couple of lone fishermen try their luck on the fishing pier. I only brought my fly rod to Lake Livingston State Park. From now on, I will be prepared for all fishing situations.
Next to the park store, there is a wooden lookout tower that provides a nice view of the lake, the fishing pier, and the marina area. I've also seen these towers in other Texas State parks. I'm guessing they were built by the same carpenters.
The video below shows a partial view from the top of the lookout tower. I didn't think to do a 360 degree view. On our next visit, I'll make sure that I capture that.
The park store was closed during our visit. I suppose there's not enough visitors at the end of December to justify keeping it open. It looked like it was well stocked with just about everything you might have forgotten back at home, as well as plenty of souvenirs and fishing tackle, etc.
On our last evening the setting sun provided these beautiful lake scenes. The picture on the top right is of a bass swirling around a post sticking up out of the water - he was probably having his evening meal.
The sun continued to set (below) and the trees along the lake shore were silhouetted by the dim light. We watched the sun set until only the stars were visible.
We enjoyed our visit to Lake Livingston State Park. We will go there again someday, but next time I'd like to see what the park is like in the Spring or Fall.
For more information about Lake Livingston State Park, visit the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.