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ALL  Earl nottingham | tpwd

STATE PARKS

There’s More Balmorhea to Love Now

Balmorhea State Park is gaining some elbow room after a 643-acre land acquisition was completed by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. This acquisition, which was seven years in the making, will increase the size of the 108-acre park seven-fold to a total of 751 acres and increase future opportunities for nature trails, nature watching and scenic overlooks.

“This is an exciting acquisition not only from a conservation standpoint but also for the opportunity to increase recreational activity for our visitors,” says Rodney Franklin, director of Texas state parks. “Wildlife viewing and hiking are core activities at our parks; providing more space for these is critically important, particularly at Balmorhea State Park.”

Access to this new land will not be available for some time, but, one day, visitors will enjoy the view from Carpenters Hill and explore new trails through the West Texas landscape.

This acquisition was purchased through federal Land and Water Conservation Funds and land sale proceeds.

Balmorhea State Park has been undergoing multiple construction projects, including removal and replacement of all existing septic systems, replacement of the chain-link fence surrounding the pool to one made of wrought iron and limestone, reconstruction of the CCC pergola, completion of repairs to the campground and San Solomon Courts, and renovations to the manager’s house and concession building.

Details about an expected reopening date will be announced later.

Located north of Fort Davis, Balmorhea is home to a unique aquatic environment, the San Solomon Springs. The springs are perfect habitat for numerous species of aquatic animals, including two small, endangered desert fishes — the Pecos gambusia and the Comanche Springs pupfish.

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