What to do in Lake Whitney State Park

The 1280.7 acre Lake Whitney State Park was acquired in 1954 by a Department of the Army lease and opened in May 1965; the state has control until 2003. The park is along the east shore of Lake Whitney west of Hillsboro in Hill County, and after the changing of the lake level, totals 955 acres.

The park is located on Lake Whitney near ruins of Towash, an early Texas settlement inundated by Lake Whitney. Towash Village was named for the chief of Hainai Indians, who moved into the area in 1835.

The Lake Whitney State Park's main attraction is its lake and the water based recreational activities related to it. The park is located in the Grand Prairie subregion of the Black land Prairie natural region. It has open disturbed tallgrass prairie remnants with scattered groves of live oak and a small area of post oak/blackjack oak woodland. In the spring, bluebonnets, Indian paintbrushes, and over 40 species of wildflowers cover the roadside and landscape. Common animals include white-tailed deer, raccoons, and squirrels with fox, coyote, and bobcat occasionally being spotted. 194 species of birds have been spotted, including wild turkeys and bald eagles. The park has an outstanding wildflower display. All of the park roadsides have outstanding displays with Bluebonnets being the most prevalent. Peak wildflower blooming, in this area, typically last from mid March to mid April.

Facilities include restrooms with and without showers; picnic sites with and without shade shelters; campsites with water, with and without shade shelters; campsites (pull-through) without shade shelters, with water, electricity, and sewer; campsites (pull-through) with and without shade shelters, with water and electricity (special rates available); an airstrip (2000-foot paved runway - unlighted, unattended, left hand pattern, call traffic on 122.9 MHz); a trailer dump station; a group recreation hall with a kitchen, attic fans, central heating and air-conditioning; a group camp with a dining hall and 8 screened shelters; a Texas State Park Store; a youth group area with a large fire ring and picnic tables - no drinking water or restrooms near; a fish-cleaning facility; a launching ramp; a playground; and 2 trails of approximately 1 mile each - one for hikers only and one multi-use trail for hikers and bicyclists.

Nearby points of interest include Cleburne, Meridian, Dinosaur Valley, and Mother Neff State Parks; The Confederate Museum; Texas Ranger Hall of Fame; and Fossil Rim Exotic Wildlife Ranch.

Camping and entrance fees vary. For reservations, call 512/389-8900. Current weather conditions including fire bans and water levels can vary from day to day. For more details, call the park or Park Information at 1-800-792-1112.

Activities include camping; hiking; mountain biking; picnicking; boating; fishing; swimming (buoyed area - no life guard on duty); scuba diving; water skiing; nature study; and excellent birding.

An annual youth fishing tournament is held on the first Saturday in June, and "aircraft fly-ins" are held at various times.

To reach the park from Interstate 35, take the Hillsboro exit. In Hillsboro take State Highway 22 west to Whitney; then follow the signs to Lake Whitney State Park. The park is located 3 miles west of Whitney on FM 1244 on the shore of Lake Whitney.

Lake Whitney State Park is located at a elevations from 533 to 574 feet. Temperatures within the park range from an January average of 46.2 degrees and a July average of 85.9 degrees. The first/last freeze are November 20/March 11. Current weather conditions can vary from day to day. For more details, call the park or Park Information at 1-800-792-1112.

P.O. Box 1175
Whitney, TX 76692

Phone: 254/694-3793

  • Lake Whitney State Park Travel Q&A