Texas Travel Destinations

Texas Travel Destinations


Consisting of a number of separate tracts in east Texas, Big Thicket National Preserve was established to protect an area of diverse flora and fauna.

There are longleaf pine, cypress, and hardwood forests here, with some virgin pine. Also included are meadows, sandhills, swamps, a number of creeks, and a major stretch of the Neches River. Among the wildlife are coyote, bobcat, and armadillo.

Activities: Four of this preserve’s units have trails for hiking and backpacking. Horses are allowed on a single trail, the 18-mile Big Sandy Horse Trail. Canoeing is available on the Neches River as well as several creeks. Fishing is also possible. Limited hunting is permitted in season.

Camping Regulations: Backcountry camping requires a permit, which must be obtained before entering. Camping is allowed in designated camping zones, which are found in most of the preserve’s units, as well as along much of the Neches River.

Campsites must be at least 200 feet from trails and roads, and 25 feet from water sources, except along the river. Campfires are allowed by the river and forbidden elsewhere.

Maximum stay permitted is five days. Group size is limited to eight. Pets are prohibited. All but a portion of one unit is closed during hunting season, usually from October 1-January 15.

For Further Information: Big Thicket National Preserve, 3785 Milam, Beaumont, TX 77701; (409)839-2689.

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