It’s our favorite time of the year where the rest of the country is entering into a deep freeze and Texans are just coming out of their humidity hibernation. It may seem backward to the rest of the world, but fall/winter is really the best time to take advantage of our area’s natural beauty and scenery. Looking for a new way to get active in Beaumont? We have a few ideas.
With rivers, lakes and the Gulf of Mexico nearby, there are plenty of opportunities to spend a day on the shore.
A local secret on the Texas/Louisiana border near Orange, Sabine River is well-known to anglers for its impressive bass fishing. The estuary offers three major fish habitats: traditional sandbar, cypress/tupelo swamp, and sloughs and bayous. One of the stops on the Bassmaster Elite tour, prize fish can average 15-inches in size and even larger. Sam Rayburn Reservoir is another beloved fishing hole with year-round opportunities to catch bass, crappie, and catfish.
Kayaking and Canoeing
With over 20-miles of paddling trails, one of the best ways to explore the Big Thicket is by rowing. One of the most popular routes is Cook's Lake to Scatterman Paddling Trail, a 4.8-mile loop that can take 2-6 hours depending on your experience and current conditions. Trips can range from two hours to overnighters if you want to combine your adventure with camping (but keep in mind the area is primitive so you’ll need to pack in anything you need). Boats can be rented from Sharp’s Canoe and Kayak.
Looking to explore the swamp? Go for an exhilarating airboat ride through the estuary on our version of a Southern Safari. Keep an eye out for alligators, forest creatures, and diverse bird species. There are a few different operators in the area: Dragon Lady, Swamp and River Tours, and those run by Gator Country themselves.
With a unique range of habitats from dense forests to sandy beaches, Beaumont is primed for adventure and you don’t have to venture far to immerse yourself in the great outdoors.
Hiking and Biking
With miles upon miles of trails, there are plenty of places to explore on two wheels or two feet that range from a casual walk in the woods to 10+ miles of intense exercise. A few of the popular spots in town include the Gulf Terrace Hike & Bike Trail (2.75 miles) and Folsom Hike & Bike Trail (1.4 miles), but the Big Thicket also has a plethora of loops and routes.
If you’d rather explore on four hooves, Tyrell Park Stables offers guided trail rides and lessons in both Western and English styles. The beautiful equestrian center is a unique way to traverse our largest city park.
One of the best local hunting spots is J. D. Murphree Wildlife Management Area, which has almost 25,000 acres of scenic wetlands. Depending on the season, you can find a number of animals from deer to rabbits and quail. Pipkin Ranch Outfitters also offers guided duck and alligator hunts on 2,000 acres of professionally managed waterfowl habitat.
Located on two migratory flyways and 28 of the Great Texas Coastal Birding Trails, Beaumont is one of the best places in America for birding year-round, but especially during spring and fall migration. With over 250 identified species, head to Cattail Marsh Scenic Wetlands and Boardwalk to see what you spot.
Those big Texas skies and land that stretches for miles. There’s just something about getting a bird’s eye view that lets you see the area from a new perspective.
If hurling yourself out of a plane at 120 miles an hour is on your bucket list, you can try tandem skydiving right in Beaumont. Operated by thrill-seekers as part of the Groundrush Skydiving Club based at Hawthorne Field Airport in Kountze, a few weekends a month, adrenaline junkies jump out of perfectly good airplanes only to be so hyped they want to do it again and again. That’s one club with unique membership requirements.
Another (less terrifying) way to see Beaumont from the sky is on a scenic helicopter flight. Based in Houston, a number of companies can have you flying high (over 2,000 feet to be exact) over the local cityscape. It’s a great option for photographers!
Want to be your own pilot? Take to the skies on an introductory flight with KUSA Aviation out of Jack Brooks Regional Airport. You’ll learn how to operate the controls and experience first-hand just how fun it can be. No experience is necessary, but if you get hooked, they also offer classes to get your full pilot’s license.