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Texas State Parks

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USA Parks
Gulf Coast Region
Texas State Park
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Texas State Park © Mildred Tee Hempel
Yellow Waterlily Taken at Fairfield State Park
Texas State Park Monarch and Winter Web © Allyson Ricketts
Texas State Park Mom and tree babies © Mildred Tee Hempel
Fairfield State Park Was bless to see a Mom and Tree fawns The password for site is john316
Texas State Park © Mildred Tee Hempel
Mom and tree babies
Texas State Park Foliage © Allyson Ricketts
Texas State Park Pileated Woodpecker © C M Prince
Taken at Brazos Bend State Park on Oct, 15 2011
Texas State Park Scissor-tailed Flycatcher © C M Prince
Taken 6/27/12 at Lake Arrowhead SP
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The Texas State Railroad (TSRR) dates back to an 1881 purchase of land dedicated to building a spur track. The purpose of the track was to connect the state owned prison iron smelting facilities, then under construction, with the Kansas and Gulf Shortline railroad. The K&G was being built from Tyler to Rusk at the same time. This connection would provide the prison iron foundry with rail service to bring in raw materials and ship products out. Increased need for rail service soon led the state to build its' own railroad that eventually extended from Rusk to Palestine, providing local communities with freight and passenger service. Today, the historic state railroad is still maintained as a fully self-contained railroad system. Its train crews maintain and operate four steam engines, four antique diesel locomotives and a complete steam-engine restoration shop, while its track crew maintains over 25 miles of track and 24 bridges.

Passengers may board the historic trains at either Rusk or Palestine. Both ends of the line have Victorian-style train stations. The trip takes 1 and a half hours to reach the opposite station. Once visitors have arrived, they have 1 and a half hours to enjoy lunch, browse through the depot's train store or take a short nature hike. Passengers then re-board for the return trip home. The State Park's 50-mile round-trip steam-engine excursions take four and a half hours.

The Texas State Railroad is known as one of the nation's largest and most unique steam-train operations. The TSRR is the only steam railroad that runs two steam trains simultaneously each day of operation. The eastbound and westbound trains meet twice daily at the mid-point of the run. This gives rail enthusiasts a rare chance to see two historic steam engines switch and pass.

State Park camping and picnicking facilities are adjacent to both depots. Rusk State Park offers shaded picnic tables, a scenic 15-acre lake, group picnic pavilions and full-hookup camping. Palestine State Park has shaded picnic tables and water-only camping sites.

Texas State Park is located near Brownsville, Los Fresnos and Port Isabel

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Area Campgrounds
South Padre Island KOA Holiday
1 Padre Boulevard
South Padre Island, TX
Port Isabel Park Center Inc
702 Champion Street
Port Isabel, TX
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Texas State Parks