What You Need to Know Before Taking Your RV to a State Park | Abilene, TX
State parks providing a wide variety of amazing camping opportunities. From full hookup sites deep in the mountains to beautiful beaches, you can find every type of camping destination at state parks around the United States. But there are a few things you should know before you take your RV to one.
Facilities and amenities vary widely
State parks are all over the spectrum when it comes to available facilities and the number of amenities they provide. Most state parks have at least an electrical hookup, and many have full electric, water, and dump facilities. A few parks may have picnic tables and barbeque grills, and some might even feature playgrounds, tennis courts, and swimming pools.
Meanwhile, other state parks can be sparse, with very few amenities beyond an electrical hookup — and sometimes not even that. Five of the state parks in Texas provide neither water nor electricity. If you’re planning on staying at a state park, make sure to do your research before setting out. Ask yourself what amenities you really need, both individually and as a group, and how much you’re willing to pay for them.
Most parks have limited stay durations
Most state parks do not let you stay indefinitely. While some parks permit long-term camping, most allow only limited stays. Some may also require that you stay a minimum period, especially during busy camping weekends around popular holidays. Make sure to check the reservation requirements before assuming you can stay as long as you like.
Entrance fees and park passes
Entrance fees vary all over the country and the state. In Texas, you expect to pay anywhere from $8 to $24 in Texas for an overnight stay, though this does not include the entrance fee.
If you’re a frequent camper, you should consider buying the Texas State Parks Pass, which grants unlimited free entry to 89 parks for you and your guests at the cost of $70 per year. The pass also comes with a 10 percent discount at any park store along with various other benefits, including four half price nights for the year. These half price nights must be used with four different reservations, so you need to use the pass at least four times to maximize it.
You can get the pass at a discount if you meet certain requirements, such as if you are a senior or have a medical disability.
Most state parks have a limit on how many people are permitted per campsite. Make sure to read up on these limitations and know exactly what and who will be coming along your trip before choosing your campsite. In Texas, the limit is often eight people per site and two sleeping units per site. You can typically come with as many passenger vehicles as you can fit on the paved section of your site, but getting that information can be difficult, so call ahead or try to bring as few cars as possible besides your RV and tow vehicle. Always practice proper noise etiquette when camping. Most people camp to get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Keep the noise down to a minimum and respect quiet hours.
Protect your food
State parks are typically located in more secluded locations than traditional parks. That closeness to the wilderness is one of the perks of camping at state parks. However, it also means higher proximity to curious animals. Always lock up all your food when you go to bed or leave the campsite. Some state parks may also offer bear boxes for food storage, but you should bring your own just in case.
For the best RV camping experience at a state park, visit RVs of West Texas in Baird to find your next RV unit!