Buescher State Park Texas

Buescher State Park in Texas is just East of Austin and a short drive past Bastrop State Park. We like to think of them as sister parks. Once you reach the park you can set up camp, hike, and bike under tall trees, or grab your fishing pole to try your luck at fishing. You can also paddle the 30-acre lake at this peaceful park.

Buescher State Park Texas

Copyright: © 2011 CHASE A. FOUNTAIN, TPWD

Things to Do at Buescher

You can visit the park for the day or spend a weekend on your outdoor adventures. There is plenty for you to do while you are here.

  • Hike
  • Bike
  • Fish
  • Paddle
  • Geocache
  • Stay overnight
  • Bring a group
  • Hike

Buescher allows you to explore nearly six miles of trails through the woods. You’ll discover oaks and cedar on the Winding Woodlands Trail and hike through some towering loblolly pines on the more strenuous Pine Gulch Trail.

Biking

Take your bike on the road or a trail. All trails (except CCC Crossover and Big Tree Trace) are open to mountain biking.
Bike (or drive) scenic Park Road 1C between Bastrop and Buescher state parks. The hilly 12-mile road takes you through recovering and forested areas of the Lost Pines. Learn more about recovery after the Lost Pines Wildfire.

Fishing

Try your luck in our small lake. Fish from the bank or from kayak or canoe. Bring your own fishing gear or borrow ours. You do not need a license to fish here.

Paddling

Bring your kayak or canoe or rent one of our canoes and take a leisurely paddle around the lake. We provide life jackets and paddles with canoe rentals.

Camping Overnight

The park has campsites with electricity, with water only, or primitive walk-in. There are also screened shelters and cabins without restrooms. Restrooms with showers are available throughout the park.

Groups Outings

Reserve the historic group hall or pavilion for your next outing.

Park Store

Shop for gifts and souvenirs at the park store.

Directions To Buescher State Park

The park is located two miles northwest of Smithville. Take State Highway 71 to FM 153; then travel north on 153 for 0.5 miles to enter Park Road 1.
Park Address:
100 Park Road 1E
Smithville, TX 78957
The Park HQ is located at:
Latitude: 30.039098
Longitude: -97.158295

Campsites At  Buescher State Park

Campsites with Electricity
People per Site: 8 Number of Sites: 32
Located in Cozy Circle (campsites #1-14) and Oak Haven (campsites #15-32). Site #5 and #31 are wheelchair friendly.
Back-in
Picnic table
Water hookup
20/30-amp electric
Fire ring with grill
Restrooms with showers nearby

Campsites with Water
People per Site: 8 Number of Sites: 20
These sites are in the Lakeview camping area. Campsites #41-55 are drive-up sites; campsites #56-60 must walk-in ~10-60 yards. Campsite #52 is wheelchair friendly.
Picnic table
Water hookup
Fire ring with grill
Tents only
Restrooms with showers nearby

Primitive Campsites (Walk-in)
Number of Sites: 5 People per Site: 8
Park in the walk-in camping parking area. The sites (#61-65) are 10 to 60 yards from the parking lot. Sites cannot be reserved and are available upon arrival at the park.
Picnic table
Restrooms nearby
15’x15′ tent pad
Fire ring with grill

Screened Shelters

Screened Shelter (Premium)
People per Site: 8 Number of Sites: 2
Reservations for a Friday or Saturday, must include both nights; holiday weekends must also include the holiday.
Ceiling fan
Patio
Picnic tables
Outdoor grill
Fire ring
Water
Electricity
Restrooms nearby
Shelters #1 & #4

Screened Shelters
People per Site: 8 Number of Sites: 2
The shelter has an interior light. Reservations for a Friday or Saturday must include both nights; holiday weekends must also include the holiday.
Picnic table
Outdoor grill
Fire ring
Water
Electricity
Restrooms nearby
Shelters #2 & #3

Lodging

Cabins
People per Site: 4 Number of Sites: 3
Each cabin sleeps four; four more people can stay outside in a tent. Restrooms are nearby, not in the cabin. Cabin #1 is wheelchair friendly. We collect a hotel/bed tax on the cabins. Reservations for a Friday or Saturday must include both nights; holiday weekends must also include the holiday.
A/C unit
Ceiling fan
Heater
Outdoor grill
Water
Electricity
Restrooms nearby
Microwave
Refrigerator
Table and chairs
Two sets of twin bunk beds

Group Sites

Group Hall with Kitchen
People per Site: 80
Rent the hall overnight by reserving two consecutive days. Each person 13 years and older using this facility will pay a reduced entrance fee of $3 per day.
A/C unit
Ceiling fan
Fireplace
Patio
Water
Electricity
Kitchen sink
Microwave
Refrigerator
Stove with oven
Table and chairs
Bathroom Sink
Toilet

Pavilion
People per Site: 35
This covered stone pavilion is in the Lakeview Camping Area. People using this facility pay a reduced entrance fee of $3 per day; children 12 and under get in free.
Fireplace
Picnic tables
Water nearby
Electricity
Restrooms nearby

Nature In The Park

Buescher State Park sits in the ecological region known as the Post Oak Savannah, where you will find around 100 miles of rolling, post oak woodlands separate this loblolly pine woodland from the East Texas Pineywoods.

Over 75,000 acres of loblolly pines, known as the Lost Pines ecosystem, spread across sections of five counties on the Texas Coastal Plain. A portion of this pine forest is in Bastrop and Buescher state parks.

The Lost Pines are the westernmost stand of loblolly pine trees in the United States. The pines have grown here for over 18,000 years. These pines are genetically unique, having adapted to 30 percent less rainfall than loblollies in East Texas and adjacent states. Sandy and gravelly soils with a sub-surface layer of water-preserving clay help to create an environment where the loblollies can flourish. Although the climate has become drier over time, this soil has let the pines thrive.

In 2015, the Hidden Pines fire torched much of the park’s pine forest. As you hike on the Pine Gulch Trail, you’ll see the renewal and regrowth that naturally follows a wildfire.

A Wildlife Haven In The Park

A mosaic of pines, oaks, shrubs, grassland, and mixed flowering plants create a diverse environment here. The park is home to many species of wildlife, including the largest of the woodpeckers: the pileated woodpecker. With its beautiful woods and tranquil lake, the park is a great place for bird watching. Birders have identified about 250 species of birds. It is worth grabbing your binoculars to watch the vast variety of birds.

Mammals include white-tailed deer, raccoons, opossums, bobcats, armadillos, rabbits, squirrels, and small rodents. Fish for catfish, bass, crappie and perch, and rainbow trout in the winter. The seasonally moist and sandy soils of the Lost Pines provide critical habitat for the largest remain­ing population of Houston toads, which have been recognized on the endan­gered species list since 1970.

History of Buescher State Park

Located just north of Smithville in Bastrop County, Buescher State Park is named for Emil and Elizabeth Buescher. The Buescher’s donated 318 acres of land to the state by 1936. After Emil Buescher’s death, his heirs donated 318 more acres. The state acquired the rest of the park’s land from the city of Smithville. The original park totaled 1,738 acres and opened in 1940. The state later deeded about 700 of the acres to MD Anderson and UT Cancer Center. Today the park is 1,016.7 acres. This parkland was part of Stephen F. Austin’s colonial grant.

More Texas State Parks

You can check out additional Texas State Parks by clicking on the list of parks below, or by going to the Texas State Parks home section. To find more state parks in the United States, visit our home page at America’s State Parks.