Big Thicket National Preserve Announces New Programs for the New Year

Published 12:50 pm Wednesday, January 12, 2022

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KOUNTZE, Texas – Did you get a new pair of hiking boots or kayak for the holidays and looking for some new trails and friends to explore southeast Texas? Or are you a leader of a youth organization that is looking for a great team building activity to do in the coming months? Big Thicket is excited to announce our new programs starting in 2022.

Ranger-led Programs 

Explore Big Thicket with a park ranger! Join us for free ranger-led activities every weekend in winter and spring. Nature walks occur on alternate Saturdays and Sundays, covering topics such as foraging and carnivorous plants. Our popular canoe trips, happening on certain Saturdays and Thursdays, provide a peaceful way to see Big Thicket’s scenic waterways. Check the calendar at Calendar – Big Thicket National Preserve (U.S. National Park Service) ( for more information and call 409-951-6700 to reserve your spot.

 Youth Paddling Program

Youth groups with members aged 10 to 30 from southeast Texas and western Louisiana are eligible for a free kayak experience on some of the many miles of water in the preserve.

There is no charge to groups or participants, and they do not need paddling experience. Big Thicket’s team of specially trained rangers teach basic paddle skills and provide almost all gear including kayaks, paddles, and life jackets.  Youth participants will also earn volunteer service hours for their groups or school clubs. To schedule a trip for a youth group or for more information, call the preserve paddle team at 409-951-6826 or email

Big Thicket National Preserve is located in Southeast Texas, near the city of Beaumont and 75 miles northeast of Houston. The preserve consists of nine land units and six water corridors encompassing more than 113,000 acres. The Big Thicket, often referred to as a “biological crossroads,” is a transition zone between four distinct vegetation types – the moist eastern hardwood forest, the southwestern desert, the southeastern swamp, and the central prairies. Species from all of these different vegetation types come together in the thicket, exhibiting a variety of vegetation and wildlife that has received global interest.

For general information about Big Thicket National Preserve, visit or call the preserve visitor center at 409-951-6700. Visit us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram