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Recreation

 

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the leading provider of outdoor recreation on all federally-managed public lands in the United States. With nearly 12 million acres of land and water in its portfolio, the USACE Southwestern Division (consisting of district offices in Fort Worth, Texas, Galveston, Texas, Little Rock Ark., and Tulsa, Okla.) is responsible for more than 11,400 miles of shoreline, 90 lakes and 1,495 recreation sites in its area of operation.


Visit www.recreation.gov. See a short video highlighting all the places you can visit.  

Addicks and Barker Reservoirs

 

Addicks and Barker Reservoirs are a flood damage reduction project in the USACE Galveston District which prevent downstream flooding of Buffalo Bayou in the City of Houston. Through lease agreements with local municipalities, the Corps is able to provide an added recreational benefit for the Greater Houston Community.

If visitors are looking for a  developed recreation facility, Bear Creek Park, located in Addicks Reservoir and operated by Harris County Precinct 3, is the place to go. It is a complex, heavily wooded park blessed with a wealth of recreational facilities such as a 54-hole golf course, tennis courts, soccer, rugby, and ball fields, and picnicking areas. Also located in Bear Creek Park is the Houston Farm and Ranch Club center, the Texas A&M Agricultural Extension center, and the Bear Creek Community center. Park office hours are Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., except for holidays.

Harris County Precinct 3 also operates and maintains the George Bush Park located in Barker Reservoir. Other developed facilities located in Barker Reservoir include the American Shooting Range, a model airport, soccer and baseball fields, horse riding trails, and the Millie Bush Bark Park for doggies. For more information on Bear Creek Park or the George Bush Park, call (281) 496-2177 or write to Harris County Precinct 3, Bear Creek Park, 15115 Clay Road, Houston, TX 77084.

Other parks located in the reservoirs include Cullen Park, operated by the City of Houston, and Cinco Ranch Park, operated by Cinco Ranch.

To learn more about other recreational opportunities at Addicks and Barker Reservoirs, call the Addicks Project Office at (281) 497-0740.

Brazos River Floodgates

Located seven miles southwest of Freeport, Texas, the floodgates have been instrumental in controlling sand and silt deposition at the intersection of the Brazos River and GIWW since its completion in 1943, in addition to providing navigation aid in crossing the river. The Brazos River Floodgates project is also used as a recreational boating area.

Colorado River Locks

The Colorado River Locks, located approximately 0.5 miles south of Matagorda, Texas, at the intersection of I the Colorado River and the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, aid passage of vessels and barges during periods of high water in the Colorado River. When normal river conditions prevail, the locks are used as floodgates to prevent excessive tidal action and silting in the Intra coastal Waterway. The Colorado River Locks project is also used as a recreational boating area.

Wallisville Lake Project

The Wallisville Lake Project's mission areas include navigation, salinity control, water supply, fish and wildlife enhancement, and recreation. The Trinity River, a major source of water for the Houston metro area, several smaller communities, and irrigation canal districts in both Liberty and Chambers counties, is navigable by pleasure boats from its mouth and north as far as Liberty, Texas.  The Wallisville lock, dam and structure provide for salinity control by opening and closing depending on tides, river flows, winds, and drought conditions.  Unlike most other Corps projects, Wallisville has no impounded reservoir so the bottomland forests, grasslands, streams, marshes, swamps, and pools are still preserved as natural habitats for a wide variety of fish and aquatic animals.  Depending on tides and fish movements, anglers could find marine species one day and fresh species the next.  Birds, such as colonial waders, shore birds, waterfowl, songbirds, and raptors call Wallisville home for breeding, wintering, or temporary residence during migration.  Additionally, mammals large and small find forage and shelter in the grasslands, forests, and swamps.  And we mustn’t forget our large reptile, the American alligator. Parks, recreation areas, and the visitor center provide opportunities for picnicking, hiking, birding, primitive camping, fishing, canoeing and kayaking, and other activities for visiting families.  Fishing can be enjoyed year-round and during waterfowl season hunters can try their luck and aim on the many waterfowl that migrate through the project.


WALLISVILLE, Texas - Alligators sun themselves less than 50 yards downstream from the lock gates at Wallisville.

Passes and Fees

In January 2007, a new federal Fee Demonstration Program called “America the Beautiful – National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass” will replace the Golden Eagle passport and the two lifetime passes, the Golden Eagle, Golden Age, and the Golden Access Passports as well as the National Parks Pass. The new passes cover recreation opportunities on public lands managed by four Departments of the Interior agencies – the National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, and the Bureau of Reclamation, and by the Department of Agriculture’s U.S. Forest Service. All participating agencies will sell the new “America the Beautiful” recreation passes at sites that charge entrance and standard amenity fees. Existing passes will remain valid until expired, lost or stolen.

What are the passes for the “American the Beautiful” program? The program has four different passes in the new interagency program:

An annual interagency pass costing $80--For visitors to multiple federal sites, the pass offers unlimited coverage of entrance and standard amenity recreation fees for a specific period of time, typically a year, beginning from the date of first use.

  • An $80 lifetime senior pass for U.S. citizens 62 or over;
  • A free lifetime access pass for citizens with permanent disabilities ; and
  • A new, free annual volunteer pass for volunteers acquiring 500 hours of service on a cumulative basis

For more information, please contact the DOI’s U.S. Geological Survey at 1-888-275-8747 (option 1).