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bluegill butterfly camping park lake snake palo duro port a fish trails snook san marcos

Photos shot for the June issue





Happy Father's Day!

While many of us were lucky enough to enjoy making outdoor memories with our fathers throughout our childhood, sometimes life takes a left turn.

Celebrate the dad, role model or mentor in your life this Father's Day. Check out our Wanderlist on great places to catch fish, camp overnight and fish some more. We guarantee they'll think it's the best gift ever!

Snookered in South Texas

With fish's range expanding, Brownsville is still the place to catch snook.

The 1966 children’s book Fish Do the Strangest Things by Leonora and Arthur Hornblow comes from a long-out-of-print series. This relic of my childhood told of odd and fascinating adaptations from the animal kingdom: color change in chameleons, bat reliance on sonar and the habits of the duck-billed platypus. On the piscine side of things, the old books described spitting fish, walking fish, air-breathing fish, blowfish and other finned wonders, but I don’t recall any mention of the life cycle of the sex-swapping snook.

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Nurturing Nature at Spring Lake

The former Aquarena Springs now helps educate future stewards.

A group of fourth-graders bunched up on the trail near Spring Lake in San Marcos vibrates with energy. Some push and poke each other, several lean out over the water, others scuff their feet and stir up dust. The field trip guide explains peripheral vision, and those who are listening widen their eyes comically as they try to see things off to their sides.

They hunker down on the ground with the guide as he sniffs at a plant, capturing the attention of the distracted. When the interpreter cups his hands around his ears, they follow suit, putting on their “deer ears” to listen more closely to sounds around them.

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Natural Healing

A widow guides her family through grief by camping.

I didn’t grow up “outdoorsy.” The closest thing my family did to camping was pitching a tent in the backyard once a summer. Our version of campfire cooking was roasted marshmallows over our tomato-red Weber grill on the back porch. Full-on camping just wasn’t us.

But recently, I took my kids camping for the first time at Pedernales Falls State Park. Only an hour away from our home in Austin, Pedernales Falls seemed like the perfect getaway. A weekend to stop everything. No sports. No technology. No schoolwork. Just nature.

As a young mother, I became an expert on living room camping. I could build a fort with pillows and blankets, make some popcorn and watch a movie. I have been that mom.

So, what were we doing tent-camping at Pedernales Falls? If I look for a breadcrumb trail, it leads back to one thing. Stuart.

(read more)


KTW 2011 coverKTW 2011 cover

Keep Texas Wild

It's not just for kids. If you like nature-related topics in an easy-to-read format, you can find three years of our popular Keep Texas Wild issues and the teacher resources to go along with them.

    Texas Parks & Wildlife Magazine