by Cameron Clark

Old Tunnel State Park-  Fredricksburg ,TX

Old Tunnel State Park is the smallest state park in Texas, consisting of only 16.1 acres of land

Things To Do

Visitors can enjoy hiking, bird-watching, and general wildlife-viewing on the Old Tunnel nature trail, which is less than one-half mile in length and open to the public 365 days a year. The trail opens at sunrise and closes at varying times throughout the year based on bat emergence time. Monday through Wednesday evenings, May through October, the trail and lower viewing area are not open to the public. On Thursday through Sunday evenings, the trail is open to those visitors who pay admission to view the bats at the lower viewing area. The trail is primitive and can be steep. Visitors should carry their own drinking water and snacks, as no water, food, or man-made shelter is available on the trail. No water fountains or other water is available on-site. No pets, or smoking, are allowed at this park. Although entrance into the tunnel is prohibited, visitors are encouraged to enjoy the view of the tunnel from the trail. In order to minimize disturbance to the bat colony and for the safety of our visitors, people must stay on the designated trail.

Bats

The abandoned railroad tunnel that gives Old Tunnel its name is home to up to 3 million Brazillian Free tailed Bats and 3,000 cave myotis bats from May through October. During those months, visitors come to watch the bats emerge from the tunnel each night. You have to pay an admission fee to come watch the bats at night and it is first come first serve.

The Old Tunnel State Park is not just cool because of the bats but also because it is located outside of Fredricksburg. Fredricksburg is a neat old town with tons of history. There is tons of shopping and activities along mainsteet. The town and park can become very crowded during the weekend so I advise to visit on a weekday, very worth the trip.