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Kayak fishing the Lone Star State...


By ChetRipley
#2130467
Hello Everyone,

We're trying to plan a camping trip for our family.
This is our first time ever attempting this so we need help.

We are looking for camping sites that are North of Dallas or East of it.
Looking for a camp site where we can setup our tents near our truck.
Something that has restrooms nearby along with nice outdoor activities like trails.
I'm also a CHL holder so I need a location where conceal carry is permitted.

Being that this is our first family camping trip, we're looking at spending a few nights to start off.
Hopefully if things go well we can sneak in a few more trips before the summer is over.

Site also needs to be free of ISIS, rivaling biker gangs and bigfoot.
By beekeeper
#2130548
The Lyndon B Johnson Grasslands has Black Creek Lake campground. It is in Wise County between Decatur and Alvord. It's beautiful, has about a 30 acre lake and walk in campsites. It has restrooms, but I don't know if it has water to them. It is not port-a-potties. It has great hiking trails and equestrian trails. About the CHL, I doubt it's allowed. It is managed by the U.S. Forest Service, but you're going to have resistance in that area most anywhere you go.
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By smokedcuda
#2130600
Maybe too far North of Dallas, but Broken Bow in Oklahoma (Washitau State forest something like that) is really tough to beat this time of year in that area. Great campsites on the clear water river, little store on premise that has just about everything for a camper, and you can even get a good hot breakfast if your not cooking. Restrooms are nice etc etc. You can get kayaks and transportation for really cheap for a short trip through some really pretty river. Its a nice easy trip typically. Dont know what all the rain has done to the river, but its spring fed and crystal clear and cold most of the time. For my effort of getting everything packed up and driving, it would be my first option, in that area. I think its really close to a town called Idabel OK, if you want to google it. As for the canceled carry, I just carry it canceled. Not exactly legal in the state parks but if the family is with me, so is the heater. Some stakes are just too high to take any chances. Good luck hope yall find the right place.
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By fisher of people
#2130650
smokedcuda wrote:Maybe too far North of Dallas, but Broken Bow in Oklahoma (Washitau State forest something like that) is really tough to beat this time of year in that area. Great campsites on the clear water river, little store on premise that has just about everything for a camper, and you can even get a good hot breakfast if your not cooking. Restrooms are nice etc etc. You can get kayaks and transportation for really cheap for a short trip through some really pretty river. Its a nice easy trip typically. Dont know what all the rain has done to the river, but its spring fed and crystal clear and cold most of the time. For my effort of getting everything packed up and driving, it would be my first option, in that area. I think its really close to a town called Idabel OK, if you want to google it. As for the canceled carry, I just carry it canceled. Not exactly legal in the state parks but if the family is with me, so is the heater. Some stakes are just too high to take any chances. Good luck hope yall find the right place.

Hate to go off topic, but coming on here and advising people to disregard the law is, in my humble opinion, irresponsible, and gives a bad name to the vast majority who carry and are law-abiding citizens. I fully support the OPs right to carry, so long as he does so in compliance with the laws. Sorry, not trying to start anything, that's just my humble opinion.
By ChetRipley
#2131249
Thank you for all of the information provided.

The recent storms haven't helped much when it comes to deciding which park to go to.
It seems like I have to be on the lookout for parks with flooding and debris.

Another set of stupid questions.....

I see that some state parks have public restrooms and showers......Are these clean to use?
How much privacy does one have when taking a shower or using the pot? Should I bring Cleaning Bubbles?

Also, some sites have these sites where you have water hook ups and electricity which I am assuming is for RV's but do these types of sites provide any sort of benefit?
I'll bring my own water but I'm sure I can't hook anything up to the water hook up that would be useful could I?

You can definitely tell we are newbies at this and while we could stay at the HoJo's, we want to definitely do our best to make the first camping trip a success so I can convince the family to do this again. While I have no problem roughing it, I do need my porcelain throne....not trying to dig a hole somewhere yet.

Thanks again!
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By Cityfisher
#2131282
My brother and I were asked by the forest ranger at Sam Houston National Forest if we had any weapons one night while camping. (He was just checking up on us because we were a little off the beaten path), and my brother told him, as required by law, that he was carrying and had a permit. The ranger said no problem just keep it were it is and he let us continue on in peace. Didn't even mention it again. We even had a nice chat about fishing and some of the crazy individuals that come into the area also. Not so sure about State Parks but in the vehicle or in your tent should be ok under the castle law.
By rodloos
#2131579
Most of the state parks I have been to have OK restrooms. Some are cleaned better than others - on busy holiday weekends the staff may have trouble keeping up with it, but normally they do a pretty good job. I do tend to bring my own TP just in case they are out. They usually have enough hot water for the showers too, even at peak times. Privacy in the showers is only OK.

Just don't ask Firefly about the tree frog in the women's bathroom that liked to jump on backs :) :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

Campsites that are listed as electric and water aren't for RV's (there are separate higher-cost sites for those, which I think have sewer hookups for the RV's). They are basically a faucet, and a GFCI outlet you can plug in a fan (helpful on hot summer nights) or such.

I don't have a CCL yet so I'm not up on which parks (if any) allow it, seems like I remember someone saying lakes that are Corp of Engineers lakes don't allow it, and most state parks specifically state no firearms, but you would have to check that.
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By Firefly49
#2132389
For future reference when you're spending a few days, you're not far from some of the Arkansas State parks. The first thing that comes to mind is how well maintained and clean every one I've been through have been! Looks like DeGray Lake Resort State Park is a little over 4 hrs from Dallas. It is absolutely gorgeous!!!!. Lake Ouachita (Wash-i-tah) State park is a little further north of that.

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