Safe Camping in the Texas Summer

Ready to kick off summer camping in Texas? Camping in Texas is diverse and enjoyable. The summers in Texas can get hot but there are a lot of places to kick back and cool off for summer camping. Whether you want to hike in the mountains or spend a day at the lake, Texas has a little of something for everybody. Grab your backpack to visit these amazing places to tent camp in Texas and how to do it safely.

Before you consider a summertime camping trip in the great state of Texas, I have listed below a few tips to make your adventure as comfortable as possible. I will go further in-depth later in this article.

  • Pick a campsite with tolerable temperatures
  • Pitch your tent in the shade
  • Ventilate your tent
  • Consider the type of clothing needed for the temperatures
  • Type of cooler needed
  • Pack plenty of bottled water
  • Carry a hand-held misting fan

Places to tent camp in Texas

Big Bend National Park

Big Bend National Park provides a treasure trove of camping options in west Texas. The National Park operates four campgrounds including Rio Grande village RV campground, Rio Grande Village campground, Backcountry campsites, and Chisos canyon campground. Apart from the Rio Grande Village RV campground, all the other three campgrounds offer tent camping and dry camping. You may also find different hookup sites and hiking trails near these campgrounds. You can also enjoy activities such as river rafting, off-road vehicle driving, horse riding, and backpacking.

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Guadalupe River State Park 

This is a river-centered park offering nearly 100 + campsites situated less than an hour from north of San Antonio. Park offers 3 campgrounds. Turkey Sink and Cedar Sage Campgrounds have the majority of the campsites at the state park featuring full electric hookups and RV camping spots, flushing washroom, and shower facilities. The park has 9 primitive sites that have immediate access to the Bald Cypress trail and nearby Guadalupe River.

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Padre Island National Seashore

Located near the Texas coast, this national area protects the world’s longest underdeveloped Barrier Island. Adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico, this 130,000 open space offer ample beach tent camping opportunities.

It has two developed camping areas that are Malaquite Campground and the Bird Island Basin Campground. This campground offers toilets and shower facilities. You can also find primitive and Beach camping options in South Beach, North Beach, and Yarborough Pass areas near the sea shore.

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Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Also called the Great Canyon of Texas, this state park provides tent camping opportunities with a spectacular view. Camping sites in the park are spread between different areas of the canyon. If you are looking for campsites with electricity you can find them on both ends of the state park at the Hackberry, Sagebrush, and Juniper Campgrounds. This state park also provides unique primitive camping sites that are accessible only by hiking a half-mile trail. Overnight visitors can pick any spot in these primitive campsites and pitch a tent.

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Colorado Bend State Park

This is one of the most sought out and visited state parks in Texas with many places to rent camp. It offers 15 drive-up campsites for RVs and 28 walk-in campsites that cater to tent campers. Campers are given excess to restrooms with no shower and potable water. They can enjoy a 35-mile network of multi-use trails; the Gorman falls trail is one of the most famous in the park.

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Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

This natural area located 20 miles north of the city of Fredericksburg offers different special campsites to the visitors. Each campsite put the campers in the shadow of the mystical Enchanted Rock. This state park features 35 tent-only sites that offer water facilities. Due to the burning heat in Texas, some sites also feature a modern shade system. The Enchanted Rock state natural area also features 20 hike-in campsites. They require you to trek 1-3 miles to reach one of these campsites.

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How to stay cool in the Texas Heat

The scorching hot climate is the ultimate price you pay for summer camping, especially in Texas. Obviously, most of us prefer camping in mild weather but it is not impossible or unfavorable to camp in hot weather and also stay cool while doing it.

Here is how you can keep yourself cool during tent camping in Texas heat.

Pick a site with tolerable temperatures

You can keep yourself cool and tolerate the extreme weather outdoors if you plan your camping trip by choosing an appropriate location with bearable temperatures. Your target should be to select a campsite with a lot of trees, and shade or bring your own awning or canopy. If you can camp near water it will also help you to stay cool. In this regard, streams rivers lakes, and reservoirs are great options that also give the opportunity for a quick and cool bath.

During summers because the temperature is very high in the lowlands people prefer camping at higher elevations where there are cooler temperatures. So if you find the forest very hot you can reserve or pick a spot in the mountains.

Pitch the tent in the shade

Now that gives selected an appropriate campsite it’s time you pitch your tent in a shady area. If you don’t find any shade and it is very hot and humid then disassemble your tent and pitch it in the evening. This is also important because direct heat can wear down the fabric of the tent.

Ventilate your tent

During summers, ventilation is the most important thing to keep your tent cool. Even if you get a tiny breeze it can create a huge difference inside the tent. Check the forecast and if it is not rainy do not set up a rainfly or a tarp to ensure maximum airflow. Open any additional vents, doors, and windows to let the breeze ventilate your tent.

Consider the type of clothing needed for the temperatures

One of the most important things to consider is to wear the right clothes for your tent camping in summers Generally campers believe that shorts, tank tops, and sandals are the best attire for summer camping.

You will require breathable lightweight pants rather than shorts. Pants will protect you from bugs and flies. If you put on the insect repellent then you can wear shorts during tent camping. Sandals and flip-flops are also fine during camping. You should also pack a lightweight t-shirt made of moisture-wicking fabrics to keep you dry and cool.

What type of cooler is essential 

While everybody has their own opinion about the best type of camping cooler the most important thing for summer camping is to properly pack your cooler. It will ensure that your food remains cool and fresh for a longer time. You can start by making a base of block ice and then put the food inside in the reverse order of how you plan to use it. In the end, cover everything with small ice cubes.

Now that you have properly packed your cooler to keep it cold or you need to put it in the shade and never drain the melt water inside.

Pack plenty of bottled water

You need to pack plenty of water that is enough for you and your family. It is very important because if you run out of water in the middle of nowhere and your campsite does not offer drinking water facilities you will be relying on natural water sources that may be contaminated with different pathogens.

Carry a hand-held misting fan

Having a handy dandy hand-held misting fan can make all the difference in the world. When my family and I do any type of summer camping in Texas, a misting fan is a must! And if you’re lucky enough to have ice in your cooler, you can take little pieces of ice and insert them inside the small water tank that is connected to the fan. Just be sure to have an ample supply of batteries if you plan to use your fan often.

Best places to fish while tent camping

The lone star state offers 100 great state parks that are excellent for biking, hiking, relaxing, and camping while enjoying nature.

Here we are discussing a combination of the best Texas state parks for fishing as well as camping.

What makes these national parks some of the best spots for fishing are boats, boat ramps, stocked lakes fishing piers, and fish cleaning facilities. Another amazing thing about these parks in Texas is that you don’t require a fishing license to fish from piers, banks, creeks, and rivers. There are almost 70 state parks in Texas that offer free fishing and a number of them also offer loaner fishing gear. Let’s take a look at the best places for camping and fishing in Texas.

Lake Bob Sandlin State Park

Lake Bob Sandlin offers great fishing opportunities such as channel catfish white bass, trout, sunfish, and crappie. It provides 60 campsites, a boat ramp, a fishing pier, and screen shelters.

Lake Casablanca International State Park

Lake Casablanca has acres of shoreline along the 1680-acre lake. It is stocked with hybrid stripers, largemouth bass, catfish, crappie, and carp. It offers 66 campsites, a fishing pier, a boat ramp, and basketball, tennis, and baseball courts.

Cooper Lake State Park

It is home to hybrid and white striped bass, catfish, crappie, and largemouth bass. In addition to fishing you can swim, water ski, bike, hike, camp, picnic, bird watch or ride horses. This park has campsites with air-conditioned screened shelters.

Lake Corpus Christi State Park

This Lake corpus is over 20000 acres and contains a large number of largemouth bass and crappie. The park has two piers for fishing.

Eisenhower State Park

Lake Texoma in Eisenhower State Park has a self-sustaining population of striped bass. This makes it one of the best lakes for striped bass fishing in Texas. You can also find a decent amount of catfish and smallmouth bass here. The huge state park has 5 camping areas, a fishing pier, hiking trails, and a boat ramp.

Fairfield Lake State Park

This lake is a hotspot because of the warm water created by the power plant nearby. You can catch largemouth bass, catfish, and red drum here. The state park offers 128 electric and water camping sites, a boat ramp, a fishing pier, a volleyball court, and mountain biking trails.

Goose Island State Park

Goose Island State Park has a long fishing pier that allows you to catch fish easily. You can also fish off the shoreline from a boat or go wade fishing. You can easily catch Bull sharks, hardheads, sheepshead, red drums, and spotted sea trouts.


 Best foods to eat in hot weather


If you are camping during the hot summer months you will experience longer days exposed to sunlight. This means that you will have a ton of activities during the day and a bigger appetite. Here is what you will require to eat to fulfill your energy requirements but also keep yourself cool during the summer camping:


Melons are a treat during summers and they are an ideal snack that fills our energy levels quickly. They also offer 90% water content that is required to make up for the loss of water due to sweating.


Berries also contain 92% water and they are rich in fn vitamins and minerals that are lost from the body during sweating.


Cold soup during lunch or dinner served with bread is a very healthy food option. It not only refills your water loss but also gives you many electrolytes such as sodium and potassium. You can prepare a brothy or vegetable soup that offers a perfect amount of electrolytes and nutrients.


You can pack easy-to-cook grains such as oatmeal, rice, or quinoa, that absorb water. When you eat these grains during digestion the absorbed water is used by our body. These brains are also very healthy and belly-filling food choices for camping during summers.

Sweet peppers

Among all vegetables, sweet peppers are the only most hydrating vegetables with 92% water. They also provide a handsome amount of vitamin A and vitamin c required for a variety of body functions.

 Lettuce and cucumber

These vegetables are highly aqueous and provide many essential vitamins and minerals that you need to fill your energy tanks after a long day of hiking or trekking in summer.


Apart from these most hydrating food options for summer camping, you may find the following foods to keep you cool and energized:

  • Tacos
  • Foil-packed sausage and potatoes
  • Morning granola
  • Salmon packets with dill and lemon
  • BBQ chicken sliders
  • Spinach and egg burrito
  • Corn on the cob
  • Grilled veggies and sausages.

Wrap up

Camping in a tent is a fun activity in Texas. If you camp in one of the above-mentioned camping areas and follow the tips and tricks to stay cool, tent camping in Texas can be a lifelong memory.

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