This is a beautiful site with nice facilities. It is close enough for shopping and restaurants should that be needed and isolated enough to enjoy the outdoors.
Paradise on Lake Texoma is on the Big Mineral Arm of the lake, on the Texas side and only a short 90 minute drive from Dallas. This proximity makes it a great spot for a quick weekend getaway. Texas and Oklahoma’s border share the 89,000 surface area of Lake Texoma which just happens to be the 12th largest Corps of Engineers lake in the U.S. Lake Texoma is home to great fishing for Striper, Catfish, Black Bass and Crappie. Because of heavy rains in the Dallas area the boat ramp was closed. The area has cruise activities if you don’t have your own boat, and for those who prefer, kayaking is also available, or simply swimming. Believe it or not, Lake Texoma has sandy beaches!
The people at Paradise campground were amazing. We got a call the afternoon of our reservation to confirm that we would arrive before closing time and if not, they would give us after hours information. We did arrive in time and our hostess was pleasant and provided us with all the information we needed. We reserved a primitive campsite and were the only tent campers in the campground (it was a Monday night though). The primitive campsite is just a vacant lot on the waterfront across from a bathroom/shower area. Parking in the bathroom lot, you take a very short walk to the primitive site and pitch your tent in any spot you choose. The lot had been mowed and our only issue was mounds of fire ants which are rampant everywhere in Texas.
The bathrooms had not been cleaned and the recent users had left a bit of a mess. The bathrooms did have all the supplies we needed and we always welcome flush toilets and hot and cold running water.
Being a primitive site, there was no picnic table so we drove over to an empty spot to prepare and eat our dinner. A staff member came by to check our credentials and while we weren’t really supposed to be using that area/spot, he let us since the campground had plenty of room/spots. He was so friendly, he gave us lots of information about the lake and the campground. The RV sites and also lakefront and very roomy. The campground also has the cutest glamping tiny cabins and other regular size cabins to rent. There is a nice hammock garden which we took advantage of. Cell service was strong, no issues and the only noise we dealt with was the sound of the lake and the birds and critters.
We want to encourage our family to come to Paradise on Lake Texoma for a fun family weekend, we will definitely return.
As a Ranger for The Dyrt, I get products to test from time to time, today I am testing Wenzel’s Double Never Flat Fabric Air Pad. My husband and I had individual sleeping air pads, but were looking for something that wasn’t so slippery and would allow us to cuddle, this Air pad fit the bill, it was exactly what we wanted. It was very comfortable and roomy. We were able to use an existing pump for inflation which was great as I wasn’t sure about the specs for the pump. Deflating the air pad was easy and great news it fit back in the carry bag easily!
Went here for a week and it was okay. If you have a boat or love to fish it’s the perfect place. My tent was right by the water which was great but during the weekend too many kids were getting near my tent and too close to my personal belongings. I still had a good time but I would definitely go again when it’s not so busy
I really like the fact that we could boondock our camper with in reason of the table area. (side of the road) plenty of room to let the slide out.. Fishing was great on the bank. Bathrooms were not horrible.. and had toilet paper.. Loved the fact it had a fire pit. and a grill.. even a place to hang your lantern.. Was a great experience if you want better.. go to places that charge more than $6 a night.. Loved it.. will be going back again.. does have trails.. to explore.
For a more tranquil experience, book a site at the Hawthorne grounds. Showers are available at Deer Ridge and Quail Run campgrounds (less primitive). Hawthorne has water, restrooms, and some tree coverage. “Luxury” camping features can be found at other grounds (ex. Fish cleaning, electric). Camping tends to book up fast so plan your trip in advance. Fishing, swimming, lots of trails (horse, hike, bike).
I mean, a bad day camping is still better than a good day at work. We stayed in the Walnut camping circle and got site 62. The site was actually pretty nice. It had the most trees over the sites around us, to give us a “in the woods” feel. One thing wasn’t great about the site was the the fire ring is pretty close to the street, and sits in front of the parking bump (this was an rv site). We brought our Bonfire Solo Stove, so we were able to have a fire pit further off the road for a little privacy. Another thing that wasn’t my favorite was a paved walkway came right past the back of our site. People couldn’t really see us, but we could hear them as the walked/talked/yelled down the walkway. The last “con” I have to say it that on the Johnson Branch I didn’t see a store on the map. We didn’t need to buy anything, but other places we’ve been have stores and that’s where we’ve gotten the 411 on good hiking and places to see on the grounds. One of the nice thing was the tree coverage, like I said. We had a lot of trees so we could but up some lights and a slack line for the kids to play on. The tent pad was big enough for a 6 man tent and a four man tent, with room to spare, which was nice. The other nice thing from our site, was that we were about 1/4 mile from a little playground for the kids. The playground wasn’t anything grand, but it broke up the days for the kids some, which as all parents know is a gift.
This is an extremely well maintained TX State Park. They have walk in tent sights near the water with great views and chemical toilet within a reasonable distance . Lake Ray Roberts offers clean water fun with less motorized boat and jet ski activity then other lakes in the area. This is a great place for kayaking and trail hiking they also have a designated beach area for day trippers . Park staff is helpful and well versed on their state park.
For Full VIDEO Review: CLICK HERE
I decided to visit Eisenhower State Park during the last part of November, just before Thanksgiving when the leaves were putting on their final showcase of the season and casting their amber and red tones everywhere. It was absolutely breathtaking to pull into the park and start to see this area unfold around me.
Eisenhower is named for our former president, Dwight D Eisenhower, who was born in nearby Denison, Texas. Opened in 1958 to tourists as a Texas State Park, the area is divided amongst lake activities and wildlife preservation. In more recent years they have added ATV trails to accompany the bike and walking trails, the swimming beach and the outdoor amphitheater and pavilion.
Day use here is only $5 or for those camping you can easily find a perfect fit for your needs between $12 and $25. I noticed depending on the loop of camp you are enjoying amenities do vary as to site sizes. All sites except primitive and a single specialty reservation lot were equipped pretty standardly with a metal picnic table and fire ring with grill. The biggest differences were in that some had electricity and water while others had neither. (You can book your campsite online by clicking HERE )
I really enjoyed the spacing of the campsites, though the area I was visiting for the day had neighbors the spacing managed to mask any noise that might come from their camp. The tree coverage in the area was amazing and shady, I can only imagine this to be a necessary feature during the hot Texas summers.
Since I was only able to enjoy the park for a day, after enjoying one of the campsites for a lunch, I took to the hiking trails and explored the many areas there are to check out. I was most excited about the swimming beach, it reminded me of the beaches I had seen in Nevada nestled along the Colorado River in groves of mountainous rocky mountains. It felt secluded and while the beach area itself was a mix of rocks and sand, it could be a great retreat on a warm day for some fun with the family. The steps down to the beach captured my attention, I later noticed the same steps repeated by the marina and also by the amphitheater. They were unlike poured concrete and made for a more organic feel to the landscape. Created by bags of concrete hardened then used as pavers the surface provided a perfect step that was both functional and aesthetically pleasing.
A few things to remember about Eisenhower:
In this area throughout camp and other parts of the property you might see bats, armadillos, beavers, coyotes, deer, opossums, rabbits, bobcats, raccoons, foxes, squirrels and roadrunners. In addition, during warm months you can see a variety of snakes hiding on rocky surfaces so always be aware of your surroundings and remember to keep your food items secured inside your vehicle.
- The Lake is a BIG draw. This is one of the more popular stops along the massive Lake Texoma. Because of this you can take advantage of fishing, utilize the boat ramp and boat houses or rent one of the many watercraft they have to offer. CLICK HERE for more information about the lake, requirements of fishing and boating, activities available and any current advisories.
- There is an interpretive guide online which will completely give you a better perspective of the park and some of what it has to offer. CLICK HERE
Overall I would give the State Park a 4 of 5 stars. I feel as though the park is large enough to accommodate large groups, essential during the busy lake season including holidays such as the 4th of July, Memorial Day and Labor Day. With the spacing it provides, not only can it accommodate crowds but it can make for a still enjoyable experience when visiting on these busy seasons.
Activities vary for those seeking non-lake related things to do, this is of great interest to me as a traveler who does not often hit the lake on one of my adventures. I like that there is an option for someone like myself to be able to if I choose however it isn’t the sole focus of the site.
For Full VIDEO Review: CLICK HERE
As a part of a program I belong to in conjunction with the website The Dyrt, where I serve as a Ranger, sometimes I am sent items to test along my many travels. I recently received an exciting package from Aftershokz to test their Bone Conduction Technology provided in their Trekz Titanium. I was very excited to find a product that answered some of my most pressing questions when camping, hiking, working out and adventuring.
How can I hear what is around me if I have in an earbud?
How can I comfortably listen to music for extended lengths of time?
Can I have something which is reasonably fashionable to listen to my music?
So why is it so important to have your ears free when you are performing activities outside? Well in my personal experience I have found that awareness of your surroundings can make all the difference.
When I travel with friends many times we have a speaker we travel with, and while we enjoy it, not everyone around us typically likes the same music we do. This poses a problem.
When I travel alone, it doesn’t matter if I am hiking or just exploring an area, I always need to know what is going on around me. From hearing the stops on the METRO clearly to hearing the leaves rustling around me to signal a potential animal in the area, there are so many reasons that knowing what is going on around you can come in handy. But from my vantage point hearing traffic and people is the most important because you never know what is going on when you completely block out the world.
I saw a study conducted over 7 years (2004-2011) which stated there were some 116 people who died as a result of wearing earphones of earbuds and not hearing what was going on around them. While 68% of those effected by this were men under the age of 30, I still was really disturbed to see that the number was so high considering it is something we don’t typically consider to be something dangerous. That got me really wondering if I could solve both my scenarios and the potential issues by simply trying a new style of listening device.
Information & Specs:
- Name: Aftershokz Trekz Titanium
- Retail Price: $99.95
- Includes: Carrying Bag & Charger Cord (cube/plug port not included)
- Color Options: Slate (Grey/Black), Pink, Ocean (Blue/Black), Ivy (Green/Black), Red
Shipping on this item was pretty rapid. From the initial order to delivery at the door was only 4 days. The package arrived via USPS and was in great condition. The box itself was well packaged to prevent denting or tearing of packaging. The product was secured well in the container with the remainder of the items which were included packaged behind the item’s plastic packaging.
Packaging of this item was very well thought and attractive. I was pleased to open the box and discover the item inside. The see through boxing really made for an exciting reveal when I initially opened the packaging. The bold blue color I selected was much brighter than I had even expected and presented a very vibrant look which I really wanted to get right into using.
As I continued unboxing I did find it a bit odd that there was no charger port, only the cord was included. Still, I like most phone users, have more than a couple extras so I didn’t find this to be a deal breaker on my feeling of the product.
I was ready to get these right out of the box and start using them, I was a bit disappointed that there was no charge to them whatsoever. Usually an item like this at least provides a bit of charge for you to start off using it straight out, however with these I had to wait. And not just a bit, I had to leave them charging for several hours before I could actually begin the process of utilizing them. This was a bit discouraging.
After the Trekz Titanium had fully charged I was able to finally initiate the connection process. As there are no cords on these headphones, they need only a device which can be connected via bluetooth, for me this meant my IPhone. I have connected devices previous, so for me this seemed to be a very simplistic process to set up. Simply holding down the “+” button on the headphones for 5 seconds activates the power. From this point you simply go into your phone settings, turn on Bluetooth and find the discoverable Trekz Titanium option.
Wearing the Trekz Titanium was pretty comfortable. Fitting just over the ear and in front of the drum itself, the phones kept that irritating feeling of pressure from building over time through use. I found the fit to be comfortable, though one size fits all did become a little looser feeling when I was running and bouncing in contrast to walking or hiking at an even pace. The back of the Trekz do not fit flush with my head personally, I do have a smaller head however so this might not be the case for all users.
The technology behind the Trekz Titanium and other Aftershokz products utilizes Bone Conduction Technology. This simply means, they sit on the outer ear to provide sound while also allowing the user to still hear what is going on around them. Unlike earbuds which fit inside the ear and create pain over time or earphones which are bulky these are designed to be streamlined and provide a more comfortable wear.
When I was wearing them I noticed that the sound was a little light in the bass when I turned it on and as I turned up the sound to get more of the bass it lowered the amount of sound from outside I could actually hear. The sound quality was very crisp and did not muddle the sounds of my music. Another negative about turning up the music was that others could then hear what I was listening to if I was standing near them. I don’t know if that is the best experience for others around me when wearing them if I really want to crank up my volume to get a good workout pump if out and about. Certainly it didn’t make me the most considerate person on the hiking trail when I encountered someone else, I felt like I needed to turn down my volume.
- Comfortable on ears
- Able to hear outdoor sounds when volume is at moderate level
- Variety in colors and styles
- Simple Set Up
- Compatible With Most Devices (I could not however connect to my MacBook)
- Fit a bit large on my head personally, although this did allow for plenty of space for a hat or headband
- When listening at louder volumes less ability to hear outdoor sounds and also can be heard by those around you
- Does not come charged
Rating this item is a little difficult because the technology behind them is pretty genius and fits all my needs as a person who spends a lot of time in the outdoors. However the few small things which I could see as areas of possible improvement do bring them down a bit.
After really going back and forth on which of these things were really deal breakers and which were just things which obviously come with the territory of Bone Conduction Technology, I settled upon a rating of a 4 of 5.
While I do feel like fit was a factor for me personally, I do not feel it would be to every individual user. The main area which I feel should be improved upon would be the bass sound being more clear at lower levels. I feel like had it have been I would have never had to turn up the volume to cancel the sounds around me, nor would I have been “that hiker” who has their music up loud.
Overall the idea of the Aftershokz Trekz Titanium is something which meets a lot of my needs as a solo hiker and camper. It provides a great service which otherwise I was hesitant to explore due to safety while in remote areas with animals and other warning sounds of which you need to be fully aware.
Additional Reviews For This Product Featured On The Following:
This place is to close for comfort. When we visited and drive through it was a busy weekend to say the least.
Checking out the three campgrounds on this turn off this one was the least appealing. Why? It looked like every spot was occupied by RVs that were large and accommodating large families. Ok so that in itself isn’t bad, but what was bad is each of those families seemed to have multiple vehicles cramming into camp, parking on the narrow roadway and littering the space.
I would compare the cramped feeling of this campground to being in an apartment where your neighbors are right on top of you versus a subdivision like Elephant Rock (neighboring camp) which has spacing between sites which do not feel cram-packed.
The camp ground itself had decent restrooms and paths to them which cut through the camp, but I would not imagine this to be a comfortable camp ground if you wanted something a bit more removed or secluded. This would never be a recommendation for someone who enjoys camping in a more removed setting or in a tent, simply to much in and out traffic.
I felt like also, this camp had to many loose children running through campsites, while I do enjoy a good family campground, there simply wasn't enough space for them to do so without being in someone else camp space, taking even further away from the seclusion feeling I enjoy when camping.
There was a playground before you enter camp and there were several people there, this would be ideal for families camping, however many did not seem to be taking advantage of the large spacious area.
- Even if you reserve a space arrive early. With this camp filling up the way it tends to navigating can be difficult and would become more and more so the more filled it becomes. If you are attempting to drive through with an RV later in the evening you could easily become frustrated trying to get around those parked on the road.
- This area has some amazing trees for hammocks so if you enjoy spending time kicking back you will enjoy stringing up your hammock and taking in some of the views of the waterline.
On this turn out of the Lake there are three campgrounds, this being the most Tent friendly of the three. There are spaces equipped with electrical connections or primitive sites in an open area which are comparable for tents. Both of these sites allow a wide open feel close to the shore line with plenty of room to move around comfortably.
After entering Tipp’s point you first find the day use pavilion and vault toilets. Just beyond that on the left is parking for the open tent area which has scattered grills and a couple of community picnic tables set in the open area. This is ideal for groups that are larger or just the person who wants to dry camp.
to the right are a group of non-primitive sites for RVs and tents. While these are closer together they are not as cluttered feeling as the sites at both the cover or elephant rock. Beyond this point are more RV sites, a shower house and playground.
This campground when I visited was the least used of the three on this turn out. While there were probably a dozen or so campers in the firSt part of the section if was very wide open feeling. The water levels were pretty high and had encroached upon some of the sites near the shower house while higher level sites remained safe.
- If staying in this section in the open camping tent area you might want to bring a fold out table. There are only a couple in this area for group use and to eliminate having to share better safe than sorry.
- Bring shower shoes. this should be a given but the showers here aren’t terrible but aren’t something you would want to be barefoot in
We found a nice secluded tent site, despite it being fall break weekend. There are many campgrounds at Lake Murray to choose from. We chose this site which was conveniently located near a nature trail with a beautiful lookout point, as well as a hiking trail. Did not use the restroom facilities, but judging from the nature center, lodge and other park facilities I am sure they were nice. The recently built lodge is beautiful. The staff we met were friendly and helpful. Seems like a very nice and well rounded park even if you aren’t planning any lake or water activities. dog friendly. We will be back!
If you are looking for special place at the lake that is a bit more secluded feeling this is the campsite for you at Lake Murray. There is no swimming here so that is a big detour for a lot of those visiting with larger families looking to enjoy that aspect. While there is boat access, it is not the most popular launch area so again, you will find it to be more wooded and peaceful than other areas.
This campground is one of those you have to walk up and grab your spot first come first serve style. With great sites for tents or RVs you would think that would mean it fills up rapidly, but I have seen this campground during various times of year and it always seems to be very relaxed and not over run, with the exception of course of the big lake holidays where every campsite is a little nuts at Lake Murray.
The restroom facilities here are nice but the improvements at this facility do not stop there with large concrete style picnic tables, an improved playground and nice pavement around camp for driving or bike riding.
Something that makes this place even more attractive to me is that they also allow primitive tent camping!! I love not having to pay for amenities I am not typically using. I can take advantage of nice facilities without having to pay for large amp hook ups which is a huge bonus for someone who does a travel blog about budget travel and cutting corners and being resourceful.
After having been to this location several times previously I have noticed that following a holiday it can take a bit longer to get it all clean because people do not seem to understand honoring the trash in trash out policy of general respect, but in recent years I have notice a vast overall improvement of maintenance of all the facilities in this area. They have made effort to continually improve and I look forward to seeing how far they come in the future!
The premium sites at the Elm Point area of the state park campsites is by far the best for views and quiet. Especially in the winter. They do get a lot more wind though, being right at the edge of the lake. But all campsite areas at this park are lovely. I always meet friendly people, and have had great luck with weather conditions. I've camped there in Feburary 2015, March 2017, and January 2018. What can I say, I love the cold. The lowest temp i've camped here was in January 2018, it got down to 14 degrees with the wind chill. I ended up sleeping in my car that night haha! This park has a lovely swimming area and some huge rocks to play on. Just be careful, they are pretty chossy.
Very pretty state park with fairly private sites and standard facilities. Nice swimming area and cool little fishing areas. Large lake good for boating with a busy boat ramp; there is a marina within park boundaries that has a store & rents boats. Nice for kayaking and medium length hiking. Stayed at a shelter surrounded by anthills all around perimeter and have several bites to show for it. Owls and coyotes sounding off at night. Overall good experience and would return (with ant killer).
- Several sites have covered picnic tables
- Really nice beach area but water shoes are recommended because of Zebra Mussles
- Bank Fishing - No license needed
- Kite Boarding
- Paved hiking/biking trail
- Clean bathrooms and showers
Juniper Cove sites with good shade 18, 19, 20, 21, 23, 24,
Juniper Cove sites with very little shade 1, 2, 3, 4, 38
If you want a quick weekend from the busyness of the Dallas Metroplex, Ray Roberts State Park is about an hour north from downtown. Ray Roberts consists of two state parks on opposite sides of lake, Ray Roberts - Isle Du Bois Unit and Johnson Branch Unit. Johnson Branch is on the west side of the lake closer to I-35E. Johnson Branch (Juniper Cove) does not feel as claustrophobic and congested as Isle Du Bois as the various campsites are a little more spread out and offset.
This is s great campground. Lots of well manicured spaces. Mainly pull though but some back in spots, primitive and tent camping spaces. It has. Great pool, great covered picnic area, horseshoe pit, basketball court and play area. WiFi is better in certain streams. Just ask during registration. There is a seated area at the casino shuttle bus stop. All and all, a nice safe campground.
We loved the proximity to north Dallas. It makes for a nice getaway weekend. We enjoyed exploring the different areas of the park. We noticed most of the trailer/tent sites are almost in pairs. So two sites, have a common grassy area. Makes this park great for camping with friends or for making new friends, as we did! The store are the marina was a great break for ice cream on a hot day. Our friends have a boat on Lake Texoma and their home was only a 15 minute drive from the park.
This place can be a bit hit or miss depending on the season because of the water levels. If you catch it during the right time of year though it can not only be a great place to do a little dispersed camping but also to enjoy some fishing. We used to go here to do some bank fishing and pulled some nice sized catfish.
There are no improvements because it is dispersed and your campsite will be based on where you elect to stay. We chose to set up for night fishing along the banks and set up just a bit back from that not to far from the bridge. There was a small pull in area and from there you would have to hike in a short distance.
There is plenty of space to spread out and material for a campfire but you will need to create your own fire pit or ring to safely burn in this area. The night skies here are vast on a clear night and you will hear a lot of animals moving around this area as there are large populations of deer and other smaller animals. You will want to watch out for wild hogs which migrate through the area at times. Do not go here without some kind of protection against those if staying overnight.
Do not leave food out at your camp because of the amount of wild animals in the area or you will be overrun by morning.
Bring a headlamp or lantern because there is no outdoor lighting whatsoever.
Consider an ATV, this area can get very muddy and an ATV can be very helpful if you are trying to explore very deep into the area.
Going out to the Lake you will find several sites and during the busy season this one is always the one that is booked solid! This site is where it all happens from big barbecues to family reunions.
Sites here are large and able to facilitate a lot of people. They include a picnic table and fire ring and often find themselves being the heart of the lake action. During the 4th of July these are some of the most coveted spaces due to the large fireworks display over the lake.
This campground is close to all the amenities the lake has to offer including the Lake Murray lodge area with mini golf, swimming pool, marina and restaurant.
There is a beach here that people drive to the lake just to enjoy so parking can get a little crazy along this area. I noticed mostly RVs here but there were a few tent campers as well staggered. For me to get a regular site at Lake Murray without any hook ups it was $15 while RVs or tents with hook ups are closer to $25.
This campground is close to a couple of hiking trails as well so I was able to check those out briefly, however the main focus of this place is the beach!!
* UPDATE** I revisited this campground on 10/20/18 after the recent rains and the beaches are completely submerged. The head of the elephant rock is almost entirely underwater as well and the overall level of the lake has closed some of the lower laying sites right on the shore. Because of this the already busy camp was filled with boaters camping on the shores and simply backing in straight from their campsites for fishing which is going crazy right now on the lake.
- Bring your own firewood, there are not a lot of resources to pick up out here because they do keep the grounds up so you will not find a lot of fallen branches to burn.
- Arrive early if you are wanting to stay on a weekend, it gets packed!!
- Check out the Lake Murray Lodge area for other activities if you have your family with you, you will not regret it!