July Events at State Parks

Learn the basics of geocaching July 9 and 18 at Pedernales Falls State Park near Johnson City. iStock

What could be more American than the great outdoors? Celebrate Texas State Parks in the Highland Lakes from Independence Day weekend through the end of July. Inks Lake State Park in Burnet County, Pedernales Falls State Park near Johnson City, and Enchanted Rock State Natural Area can fill up quickly, so remember to book a day pass online before your visit.

INKS LAKE STATE PARK

Located at 3630 Park Road 4 West near Burnet. Daily admission is $7 for ages 13 and up and free for children 12 and under. Call the park at 512-793-2223 or visit his webpage for more details.

  • Independence Day Celebration Bike Parade – 10 a.m. July 2nd; decoration at 9 a.m. Dress your bike in red, white and blue and join the parade. Come either pre-decorated or use park supplies (while supplies last).
  • Constitution to Nature — 11 a.m. July 3. Learn about the US Constitution and its preamble and the oak-gall ink with which the important document was written. Then write your own nature-inspired preamble with ink and quill pen.
  • Accompanied nature hike — 9 a.m. July 9th, July 16, July 23and July 30. Join a park ranger on a 0.2-mile hike to Devil’s Waterhole to learn about native plants and local geology.

PEDERNALES FALLS STATE PARK

Located at 2585 Park Road 6026 near Johnson City. Daily admission is $6 for ages 13 and up and free for ages 12 and under. Call the park at 830-868-7304 or visit his webpage for more details.

  • Stories in the Stars — 9 p.m. July, 1st, July 2ndand 22nd of July; 9:30 p.m. July 29; and 10 p.m. July 30. Observe the stars, constellations and planets in the Star Theater and learn about their importance to humanity. The program is approximately one hour; open stargazing follows.
  • Skins, skulls, scales and droppings — 9 a.m. July 3, 4th July, July 17and July 21. See, feel and smell examples of Texas Hill Country wildlife by what remains.
  • Junior Ranger Academy — 11 a.m. July 310am 11 Julyand 1 p.m. July 23. For ages 6 and up. Children discover the outside world and earn badges for completing levels 1, 2 and 3. Adults must accompany their child.
  • Fishing with a Ranger — 8:30 a.m. July 7. Fish the Pedernales River (no license required) while learning the basics of this catch and release program. Bring your stick or borrow one at the park with reservation in advance.
  • Prehistoric Hunting: The Atlatl — 9h July 9th, July 10and July 14th. Learn about ancient hunting technology that preceded the bow and arrow and try your hand and aim with an atlatl. Ages 8 and up can participate. Adult supervision required for ages 17 and under.
  • Geocaching 101 – 11 a.m. July 9th and 10 a.m. July 18. Find out how this modern treasure hunt works and start looking for caches. Use your own device with the Geocaching app or borrow a GPS device from the park with advance reservations.
  • Falls and Fossils — 9 a.m. July 15th and July 24. Discover the secrets of Pedernales Falls with a 30-minute historical and fossil demonstration followed by a 30-minute hike.
  • Night Hike — 9 p.m. July 16. See what it’s like to live like a nocturnal animal.
  • Star Party — 8:30 p.m. July 23. Join the Austin Astronomical Society to observe the night sky through member telescopes. Pre-registration required.
  • Astronomy 101 — 7:30 p.m. July 30. Learn the basics of stargazing with different types of equipment.

ENCHANTED ROCK STATE NATURAL AREA

Located at 16710 RR 965 in Fredericksburg. Daily admission is $8 for ages 13 and up and free for ages 12 and under. The park quickly reaches capacity, so reservations are encouraged and also required on weekends, public holidays and school holidays. Call the park at 830-685-3636 or visit his webpage for more details.

  • Stargazing 101 — 9:30 p.m. July, 1st and 22nd of July. Discover the importance of dark skies when stargazing.
  • Stories in Our Stars — 9:30 p.m. July 2nd and July 23. Learn about light pollution and the stories behind some of the best-known constellations.
  • Marvel at the Moon — 8:30 p.m. July 3. Admire the moon through a telescope while learning about its craters and ancient stories.
  • Starry Night Hike — 8:30 p.m. 4th July. Take a challenging 1.5 mile round-trip night hike on the Summit Trail and gaze at the stars at the top. Registration required.
  • Birdwatching 101 — 8 a.m. July 8. Learn about bird watching on a ranger-guided hike. All levels of experience are welcome. Loan binoculars available for the first 12 visitors.
  • Almost Full Moon Hike — 8:30 p.m. July 9th, July 10and 11 July. Hike to the top of Enchanted Rock under the light of an almost full moon. Registration required.
  • Astronomy 101 — 7 p.m. 22nd of July and July 23. Learn the basics of observing the night sky with different types of equipment.

For more state park events, visit the Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife website. And check out the Highland Lakes Walking Guide before leaving to seek useful information.

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