Texas has never been the best place to watch a Fall Foliage, but there is one place in Texas, however, where you can watch amazing Fall colors. Here’s my story about visiting Lost Maples State Park only for watching Fall Foliage.
My fascination for Fall
I haven’t previously mentioned this in any of my blog posts that I moved to the United States of America from India more than four years ago. And I have been living in Texas ever since. Like the United States, even though most of India lies in the Northern Hemisphere, the weather and seasons in India are quite a bit different as compared to the USA. In India, we have four months each of Summer, Monsoon, and Winter versus three months each of Summer, Fall, Winter, and Spring here in the US – 2 entirely new seasons, something previously unheard-of. For someone who has lived 25 years of their life in India, moving to the US and experiencing Fall and Spring was fascinating.
When I moved to the US, Dallas was the first city I moved to. It was also the place where I first saw the Fall colors. Even though Dallas and generally Texas have only a handful of trees that change colors, I was still absolutely fascinated by it. That’s when I learned more about the season and the science behind the changing colors and also the best places to see Fall Foliage across the US.
Lost Maples State Park for Fall 2020
In the next few years and the Fall seasons that came along with it, I was getting disappointed in watching just the handful of trees of Texas that changed colors. So after three years of spending Fall in Texas, I firmly decided to catch the Fall Foliage for the year 2020 at New Hampshire – one of the best places to see Fall Foliage. Unfortunately, my years of excitement quickly vanished as we entered this era of the Covid-19 pandemic. That’s why I had to adapt to the situation and search for a place within driving distance in Texas itself.
Naturally, I Googled – The best places to see Fall Foliage in Texas, and I came across tens and hundreds of blog posts where people have documented their experiences. One very repetitive thing about these blog posts was that almost every single one of them had mentioned Lost Maples State Park. Owing to an increased level of curiosity, I eventually decided to take a trip down to the Park for Fall 2020.
Talking about my trip itself, I decided on a day trip to the State Park. As per the official website of Lost Maples State Park, the busiest time of the year is in November (obviously). So, with regards to the dates, I had to plan around the days for which I was able to score a day pass for the State Park. But the dates eventually worked out perfectly.
The park is about four and a half hours away from where I live. So, on the day of my trip, I started driving around at 7:30 AM. Due to the very remote location of the park and construction work on almost every road I took after leaving the freeway, I reached the park only after 1 PM. Not how I planned it. Even after such unplanned delays, I was determined to spend a good three hours at the park and enjoy the Fall Colors that the park is so famous for.
After finally reaching the park, I quickly glanced at the trail map and picked the most popular one – The East-West Trail to East Trail. The trail, categorized as challenging, stretches over four and a half miles with some steep uphill and downhill portions that changed in over 500ft in elevation. The steep portions of the trail have loose rocks and mud that offer little to no traction on running shoes, making it the most dangerous part of the entire hike. Talking about the good things about the trail, it offers three scenic points that overlook the park giving a bird’s eye view of the Fall Colors.
Once I completed my hike, I spent the rest of my time until sunset just admiring the gorgeous views of the park and its Fall Colors from the park’s picnic area. Thus, completing my long-awaited goal of catching an actual Fall Foliage. And I would recommend this place to all my fellow Texans for watching the Fall Foliage as it’s one of the best places in entire Texas during this season.
- The first step to plan this trip is to check the Foliage Calendar. As per the source, “While no tool can be 100% accurate, this tool is meant to help travelers better time their trips to have the best opportunity of catching peak color each year.”
- The second step to plan this trip should be to make sure you either have a camping spot or a day pass reserved in advance. They sell out weeks to months in advance so be sure to have a reservation before visiting the park
- Be sure to check the road closures before visiting as the Farm-to-Market roads leading to the park can be shut due to construction (I experienced that first hand). Google Maps is usually accurate
- Bring enough food and water as there are limited sources to shop at or near the park
Thanks for reading my blog post, hope you liked it and found it informative.