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Brazos Bend State Park

Trail (3.39)18
(1.32) (2.21)
21.60 Miles N/A
N/A
N/A N/A
$3.00 More Info
Houston Fort Bend
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Photos

Trailhead The first trailhead you get to after entering the park, for the 40-Acres Lake Trail. (Photo by Riff Raff) Warning "Do not feed or annoy the alligators" is a common theme at this park. (Photo by Riff Raff) The main attraction The main attraction for hiking here. (Photo by Riff Raff)
Atop the tower View down the trail from the top of the 40-Acres Lake observation tower. (Photo by Riff Raff) Swamp Texas swampland. Keep a sharp eye out through the trees to spot larger alligators. (Photo by Riff Raff) Trail View Trail connecting the 40-Acres Lake and Elm Lake loop trails. All the trails here are completely flat, some more rugged than others. (Photo by Riff Raff)
Swamp Continued More swampland. (Photo by Riff Raff) Elm Lake Elm Lake. In addition to the alligators, you can spot any number of different types of birds out here. (Photo by Riff Raff) Elm Lake Some parts of Elm Lake are murkier than others. (Photo by Riff Raff)
Observation Tower The observation tower at 40-Acres Lake. (Photo by Riff Raff) Deer Grazing right along side of the road near sunset. (Photo by Lone_Star) Alligators Alligators sunbathing along the muddy banks of the swamp. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Birds Lots of bird watchers visit this park. Here's an example of why. (Photo by Lone_Star) Brazos River If you look carefully, you can see a color change halfway up the trees on the bank (from brown to grey). This shows how high the water level can get when the river floods! (Photo by Lone_Star) High Water Mark The trees along the trail show how high the water can get when the Brazos river floods. (Photo by Lone_Star)
Swamp One of the many swampy areas within the park. (Photo by Lone_Star) Windmill One of the many sites you'll see along the trail. (Photo by Lone_Star) Majestic Oak A beautiful oak tree along the trail. I imagine it must be at least 50 years old (or more). (Photo by Lone_Star)
Scavengers These scavengers were resting in the trees while others were circling up the thermals looking for something to eat. (Photo by Lone_Star) Nice Lookout Nice place to walkout over the water and look. Notice one of the many alligator warning signs. (Photo by Lone_Star) Read And Heed Many people foolishly like to get as close as possible to alligators, which sometimes lay still. It seems harmless, but what most people don't realize is how fast alligators can move when they want to! (Photo by Lone_Star)
Eery After Dark This is NOT a place you would want to get lost in after sundown. It's spooky, freaky and the place comes alive with loud chatter and noises from every wild animal imagineable! (Photo by Lone_Star)

Log Entries

Horseshoe lk,pilant slough,creekfld lk,redbuckeye
By charM on 8/11/2009
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 4.80 MilesDuration: 10 hours, 20 minutes

the horseshoe lake trail was long and had some open areas where the sun was intense, but it was secluded and very pretty. we only saw one or two people on this trail. I suggest bringing bugspray b/c mosquitos were bad on this trail. The pilant slough was kinda crowded at times but still have very pretty views and neat bridges.Watch where you're going tthough b/c there are a few spiderwebs that loom over the trail, but not too bad.  The Red buckeye was my favorite so far.(i plan on hiking the entire park) It was shady and the bugs werent bad(except a few spiders). You get great views of both Big Creek and the Brazos River, and it was very remote... One word of advice, BRING WATER and snacks...especially if you're hiking in July or August.

Rainy Hike
By KENNEDJT on 4/18/2009
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 1.00 MileDuration: 30 minutes
My second hike in Texas was at Brazos Bend State Park. This is definitely a nice area to bring kids and family but for the "lone hiker" it's your typical state park. There were lot's of birds, deer, and alligators on this rainy day but also lots of people in the area. I plan to revisit when the weather is better!
40-ACRE TRAIL
By Joy Z on 6/23/2008
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 3.00 MilesDuration: 2 minutes
Absolutely beautiful. We weren't able to get to the observation tower (on a Monday when no one else was around) because of sunning alligators in the middle of the trail. It was wonderful. Beautiful park. Kid friendly (areas set aside for children, family picnics even playgrounds). We're planning on bringing the grandkids next month. We saw: alligators, 20+ deer (10 under a tree during a thunderstorm). Armadillo, cottonmouth snake, raccoon, 100's of birds (crane, duck, hawks, eagle, vultures, baby chicks everywhere), a bunch of spiders. Beautiful nature trails.
Red Buckeye, Whiteoak, Riverview & Sawmill Trails
By Lone_Star on 1/31/2008
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 11.50 MilesDuration: 4 hours

I parked in the parking lot east of Hale Lake and went out on Red Buckeye Trail as it winds along Big Creek to where it joins the Brazos River.  The trails were narrow, but very nice.

I then hiked North along the Brazos River via the Whiteoak Trail (I took the route that branches out along the River).  I continued North along the Riverview trail and saw some magnificent oak trees.  I saw some Wild Boars in this area.

Sawmill Trail was very muddy and conditions worsened when I got to Bayou Trail.  My original plan had been to hike south back towards Hale Lake, but conditions were impassable, forcing me to turn around.

I did this hike during the week and I only saw 1 couple at the beginning of my hike.  They were returning from the Brazos River.  I did not see any other people on this hike, which really made it a nice, tranquil hike.

Be sure to check with the Ranger Station on trail conditions before you take your hike.  This was a mistake I made and I paid the price by having to turn around and do a longer hike than planned.

40 Acre And Elm Lake Trails
By Lone_Star on 1/26/2008
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 3.50 MilesDuration: 1 hour, 30 minutes

I visited Brazos Bend State Park late in the afternoon because hiking the trails was only part of my agenda for the day.  The other part was going to the George Observatory to look through their telescopes at night.

I parked in the vicinity of the Ranger Station HQ at the entrance of the park and walked along 40-Acre Lake.  I did not see any alligators in this area.  The trail conditions were fairly good, although still a little muddy in spots from some rain showers days before. 

From 40-Acre Lake, I took the connecting trail which leads past the Observation Tower to Elm Lake.  Along this enchanting trail I observed a lot of various birds in their natural habitats.

At Elm Lake, I saw 2 alligators, both of which were about 50 feet or so from the waterline.  They were not moving, however, just basking in the mud.  Seeing them added a little to the excitement to the hike.

There were a number of people walking along both lakes as well as bird photographers and bikers.  It was not overly crowded, however.

The Pilant Slough Trail was closed off due to muddy conditions.

All in all, it was a nice, late afternoon hike that would be a nice walk for families as well as hikers.

P.S.  I never got to look through the telescopes at the George Observatory due to cloudy conditions, so I'll have to return and do that another time.  However, nearby this area, I saw a family of deer at sunset.  They were grazing right along the roadside and were not afraid so I was able to pass slowly within 25 feet of them.

Nice park, lots of gators
By Kim on 10/1/2005
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 8.00 MilesDuration: N/A
Camp volunteers were firendly, waterstations for dogs on main trils. Once off of the main trails we had the place to ourselves. Clean restrooms and friendly visitors everywhere. Lots of wildlife to see. Nice experience.
By itchy on 5/20/2005
Rating: N/ADifficulty: N/ASolitude: N/A
Distance: 7.10 MilesDuration: N/A
Stayed on the east end of the State Park near the Brazos River. Very nice trails--lots of benches, great solitude. When I reached the Bluebonnet trail, I started heading east and I saw an amazing huge oak tree.
Good time, Good park, Clean fun!
By eggman718 on 4/8/2005
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 10.00 MilesDuration: N/A
My wife and I had great time at this park. One of the first hikes since we decided to take to the outdoors. We arrived a little before noon and found that the park was hosting Earth-day. Lots of kids and families having a great time. We initially were going to stay at the campgrounds, however due to the demands of Earth-day all the locations were full. Be sure and reserve a spot if you are planning on staying. Even though we could not stay, park staff directed us to Lake Texana (approximately 1hr drive) where we found equal enjoyment. Brazos Bend was fun and we plan on doing it again. Live to Hike, Eggman
Nice for kids!
By texasgrape on 3/5/2005
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 2.00 MilesDuration: N/A
Parked at Elm Lake and headed westward onto the Elm Lake Loop Trail but turned west, once we got to the southwestern end of the lake, and headed to the observation tower. Went back the way we came. Saw numerous alligators up close and personal! Lot's of folks walking, biking, etc. Kids had a blast.
Good for kids!
By texasgrape on 2/19/2005
Rating: Difficulty: Solitude:
Distance: 1.00 MileDuration: N/A
If you have kids and want to introduce them to hiking, this is the one! Parked south of 40 Acre Lake and took the 40 Acre Lake Trail to the observatory and then walked back. Saw two alligators; kids had a blast. They can take their bikes too!

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