A last minute trip to an unknown place turned into one of my favorite places.  I love to go to places where you have a lot of space to yourself.  No other campers, RVs or houses.  And with an almost new moon, the sky was dark and the stargazing was amazing!

Hill Country State Natural Area is mostly set up for horses.  Most campsites are primitive equestrian sites.  Composting toilets and shared water.  And then there is the lodge!   We rented the lodge which has 4 bedrooms, 6 electrical posts and water hookups and plenty of space to camp.  You can also bring your horses as they have barns and large fenced in area.  The lodge even has it's own locked gate so other visitor to the park can't drive through.

   

Since the weather called for a lot of wind and rain, we chose to setup a couple tents in the covered area.  It provided a little extra heat and definitely helped the super windy day.  We didn't realize the lodge came with a large smoker BBQ.  Next time, we'll definitely cook something up in there.  🙂

Normally in state parks your dogs have be on a leash.  Since we had our own gated area (there were some spots not fenced in), the dogs roamed and had the time of their life!  The pic with tall grass is all the way at the back of the property.  You can't even see the house from this spot, that's how much space we had!  Below are views of the front yard.

 

With over 40 miles of hiking, there is plenty to do!  It rained while we were there so we didn't do as much hiking as we wanted but it was still so relaxing to have peace in the middle of nature.  During the rain we played games, then hit the city of Bandera for wine tasting, lunch at the oldest restaurant in Bandera (1921) and listened to local music jams.

And I can't forget a great Thanksgiving dinner.  This is the only picture we took of it but it was really good!

At night we had a completely clear sky for stargazing.  The photos of the night sky were taking by hand with a cell phone so they are a little blurry but it gives you an idea of how clear the sky was.  The crescent moon set early in the night, exposing even more stars.  Campfires, stargazing and hot soup... a perfect night!

The picture to the left was the view from our front door.  The moon was actually a small crescent but you could see the outline of the full moon so that light shows up in the photos.  The red on the tree in the right photo is the glow from the the campfire. 😀

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keep an eye on the calendar because we're going to book this again in the future!

For all camping trips that are currently on the calendar, click here.

To see all of the photos from our trip, click here for our shared google folder.