A New Year’s Retreat: Lake Somerville State Park

We all need to get away now and then and starting out the new year with a prayer retreat has always been a favorite of mine.

Given the challenges of gathering and praying with other believers, combined with the desire to get away for a bit, Jon and I reserved (as one must now do) an RV site at Lake Somerville State Park.  We had never been there before and being only a two-hour drive, it was close enough to go and still be back home for other obligations and commitments.

Neither of us knew what to expect but it definitely exceeded our expectations. We were on the Birch Creek side and when we first arrived, we were the only ones on our camping cul-de-sac. I guess that’s the benefit of visiting a lake campground in January. You pretty much have the place to yourself. Even when a few more campers showed up later in the week, each campsite has enough trees and space to provide some privacy and seclusion. However, come summer, I bet the place is packed with boaters, kayakers, hikers and swimmers and splashers.

The lake has thirteen miles of trail plus shorter trails and loops. We hiked two and a half miles (and back) of the long trail and several of the shorter trails. The campground is set up to bring horses and ride the long trail as well. It could be a place we bring our bikes when we visit again.

We didn’t think to bring firewood because we were more interested in looking at the stars. One of the nights we wish we had. It would have been nice to sit out in the cold air next to a fire in the ring the campground provides. But the stargazing is phenomenal. It’s far away enough from big towns and cities to provide mostly dark skies and the campground itself doesn’t have the annoying street lights and camping site lights so many have. The only thing missing was a meteor shower.

Lake Somerville is definitely worth the visit, but I bet reservations fill up quickly in the summer.

We’d go back again for sure. But in the near future, we hope to explore other state parks Texas has to offer.

(Side note, we originally planned to reserve a site at Lost Maples State Natural Area after visiting it with friends in November and finding out it also had RV camping, but it was booked over the days we wanted.)


About Jill English Johnston

God writes His story on every heart, if we only pause to read it. My heart has lived in a fantasy world since early childhood and am delighted that God has finally brought me to the place where I can bring the fantasies to life through story. I am currently working on a fantasy trilogy (of course) but I also post thoughts, reflections and (hopefully) inspiration to my website: tabletsofhumanhearts.wordpress.com I am a follower of the Rabbi Jesus, married to my best friend and inspiration, and the mother of three incredible children, one daughter and two sons, a son-in-love, a daughter-in-love and two adorable granddaughters. When not writing, I passionately pursue prayer, reading (never enough time to read them all!), and the outdoors. My husband and I both served in the US Navy and have lived/travelled through many states and all over Asia. We both still enjoy travelling, but we really love our home in New Braunfels, located at the Texas Hill Country.
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