Old Tunnel State Park

  • Old Tunnel Bats
    In season, bats emerge nightly from their roost in an old railroad tunnel.
  • Old Tunnel Opening
    When the railroad moved out, the bats moved in!
  • Bat Program at Old Tunnel
    We lead programs on bats nightly, May 1 through Oct. 31.
  • Old Tunnel Bat Viewing Area
    Purchase tickets up to 60 days in advance to reserve a place at the nightly emergence.

Bat Haven

An old railroad tunnel here provides a seasonal home for around 3 million bats. Join us for a bat program to learn more about these flying mammals and to watch them embark on their nightly search for food!

Things to Do

Besides viewing the bats, you can also picnic, hike, bird-watch, stargaze and look for wildlife.

Bring your own drinking water, as water is not available in the park.

We have a few rules to protect both the bats and you:

  • No camping, pets or smoking.
  • Stay on the designated trail when hiking.
  • Do not approach the tunnel.

Bat viewing

Old Tunnel is home to up to 3 million Mexican free-tailed bats and 3,000 cave myotis bats from May through October. We open the park in the evening for bat viewing and programs while the bats are here.

The bat viewing areas are accessible for folks with mobility impairments.

Ticket information

Every person (including children) must have a ticket to be in the park after 5 p.m. during bat season.

Buy tickets online or by calling the Customer Service Center. Show tickets or email confirmations on your phone at the gate. You must purchase tickets in advance; we do not sell tickets on-site.

Space is limited in our two bat-viewing areas (upper and lower), so make your reservations early. We do not allow children under 4 years old in the lower viewing area.

Ranger Programs

When the bats are in residence, we offer evening programs on their life history and ecology. You must purchase a ticket in advance to attend.

If you hike, look for signs along the nature trail with bat lore and railroad history.

Check our Facebook page for upcoming astronomy programs.

Bat trunks

Borrow bat trunks with curricula for all ages, videos and a slide presentation. You’ll also find a taxidermic bat, bat detector, posters, books and more. Find a trunk to borrow at Bat Trunk Resources.

Presentations

Request a presentation for your school or group by emailing the park:

  • Bats of Texas (all groups/all ages)
  • Distance learning (for students) via Skype, Zoom or MS Teams:
    • Introduction to Bats - Grades K through 6th
    • Mammals of Texas - 5th and 6th grades
    • Conservation as a Career- 5th and 6th grades

10619 Old San Antonio Road
Fredericksburg, TX 78624

Latitude: 30.101079

Longitude: -98.820704

(866) 978-2287

Mailing Address
P.O. Box 132
Waring, TX 78074

Entrance Fees
  • No Entrance Fee: Free
Hours

Trail is open year-round from sunrise to 5 p.m.

Bat Season

You must have a bat-viewing ticket to stay in the park after 5 p.m. May 1 through Oct. 31.

Buy tickets in advance online or by calling the Customer Service Center. We do not sell tickets on-site. Bring printed tickets or a phone with email confirmation to show at gate.


Space is limited, so purchase your ticket early. We do not allow children under 4 years old at the lower area. The bat viewing areas and the trail to them meet ADA guidelines.


We do not issue refunds if bats are not visible.


For up-to-date bat emergence information, check Facebook, Twitter, or call the toll-free line at (866) 978-2287 (recorded message only). To contact us, email Old.Tunnel@tpwd.texas.gov.


To protect the bats, we do not allow camping, pets or smoking.

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