We enjoyed a few days at Lake Brownwood State Park just before Easter once again. Springtime is such a great time to visit this lovely park, and for the first time since we began visiting here is early 2012, the lake was completely full! This was also our yearly pilgrimage to see our beautiful Texas bluebonnets once again. A trip to see the bluebonnets in spring holds a special place in my heart, dating back to my childhood days with my family when we would make a trip to another lake in central Texas in the spring, often during this very same week when we had a break from school for Easter.
Here are two views of the same spot at Lake Brownwood in the day use area. The first photo is from last year at this same time, and the second photo is from last week.
While we certainly missed all of those beautiful bluebonnets that we saw last year, it was such a treat to finally see this beautiful lake completely full with green grass and trees all around. The lake actually filled up shortly after our visit last year after significant rains came to much of the state to finally end the drought that began in 2011, but this was our first time back to the lake since the rains came.
There are several campgrounds in the park, and we always enjoy the Council Bluff campground with the full hookups, nice shady sites, great views of the lake and easy access to some nice trails afforded there. In fact, the overlook in this campground is one of my favorite places in the entire park, especially at sunset.
I captured a few photos of some pretty birds in the campground, including my first photos of our state bird of Texas, the mockingbird, which we do not see very often in our part of the state, unfortunately. These pretty birds have a beautiful wingspan, too.
The Willow Point campground, which sits right on the lake, is another beautiful place to camp in the park, offering water and electric sites with easy lake access. The gorgeous day use area also sits next to this campground, and a nice fishing pier and boat ramp is within an easy walk. We actually decided to return to the park midweek at some point and camp in Willow Point to take full advantage of the lake access, too.
Lake Brownwood State Park is one of 29 CCC Legacy Parks in the Texas State Park system, and the most impressive site in the park is the historic lodge, built by the CCC during the Great Depression. Hubby’s father was part of a CCC group in the hill country in that time, so all of the CCC facilities throughout the state hold a special place in our hearts, for sure.
I always enjoy seeing this beautiful and impressive building on each trip, and each year on Easter Sunday, a sunrise service is held here at a gorgeous overlook that has a great view of the lake as the sun shines its first golden rays over the lake.
Of course, a visit to this area is not complete without enjoying a meal at a truly iconic restaurant in the town of Brownwood, which is 22 miles south of the park. Underwood’s Cafeteria is not to be missed when in this area, and you can’t miss it when driving through town with those large signs. We opted to dine here at lunch on Thursday before the holiday crowds came to the area, which was a good plan. Underwood’s Cafeteria has been in business for 70 years as of this year and is still going strong with some of the best BBQ anywhere at a fair price.
We had a great, relaxing trip back to this area, and even the dogs had a great time, I think. We took the car along on this trip instead of the motorcycle, as the weather was a bit cooler than on previous trips, so we took them with us on some nice drives here for the first time. Easy access to some of our favorite hiking trails from our campsite also allowed us to take them hiking every day, and we especially enjoyed hiking the Texas Oak Trail above the lake at sunset each day.