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TPWD News Release — Jan. 12, 2018

Despite Freezing Weather More Than 950 People Participate in First Day Hikes at Texas State Parks

AUSTIN— The frigid temperatures that hit the Lone Star State on the first day of 2018 weren’t enough to deter park goers from participating in First Day Hike events as part of the national initiative.

In all, 964 park visitors braved the cold and hiked and biked their way into 2018 at one of 51 state parks that hosted events throughout the day, with 1,766 miles trekked statewide.

“We were excited to see so many of our park visitors come together with their families on New Year’s Day for a First Day Hike adventure at a Texas State Park,” said Brent Leisure, director of Texas State Parks. “These hikes have become a tradition for many Texans and we hope to continue seeing them start their year on the trails at their local state parks.”

First Day Hikes events ranged from brisk strolls on scenic trails, bike rides, short treks with four-legged family members and meditation walks to more strenuous hikes for experienced visitors.

Dinosaur Valley State Park, located just outside the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, had the most participants with 65 visitors. Following closely behind were Mother Neff State Park near Waco and McKinney Falls State Park in Austin.

Nationally, more than 32,000 participants covered about 70,200 miles at the 1,200 First Day Hikes offered across the United States.

For more information about hiking or other activities in Texas State Parks, visit