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part ofBardwell Lake, US Army Corps of Engineers
Status: Open through Thu Dec 31 2015   Season Dates


Waxahachie Creek Park is on the western shore of Bardwell Lake, less than an hour south of the Dallas-Fort Worth area in north-central Texas. City-dwellers frequent the park's campground and day-use area to enjoy outdoor activities without going far from home.

The lake has favorable fish and wildlife habitats, providing plenty of opportunities for fishing and hunting, and great locations for camping, boating and hiking. Deer, armadillo, rabbit, squirrel and a variety of bird species inhabit the area.

Natural Features:

The park is located on the upper reaches of the lake, near the mouth of a main tributary, Waxahachie Creek. The word "Waxahachie" is believed to be the Tonkawa Native American word for "Buffalo Creek."

The lake's waters provide a refreshing break from the Texas heat and enormous blooms of bluebonnets and other wildflowers surround the lakeshore each spring.


Many local fishermen consider Bardwell Lake one of the best kept secrets in the state. Bass fishermen seldom leave empty-handed. Crappie fishing is moderate, and catfish are usually excellent. The lake has a marina with fishing piers, two of which are enclosed (a small fee is charged for the use of these facilities), and there are several designated hunting areas around the lake, including those for duck hunting.

The Bardwell Lake equestrian and multi-use trail begins at this facility. It provides over 13 miles of trails for horseback riding, biking or hiking. Visitors should be advised that the trail is located within a designated hunting area from September through March.


Waxahachie Creek Park offers something for everyone with 65 campsites with water and 30-amp electric service, seven non-electric campsites and one reservable group pavilion, which can accommodate up to 200 people. There is also a day use area for visitors who are not camping overnight.

The boat ramp at the upper end of the park is very shallow at normal lake level and not suited to launch ski boats or larger vessels. The boat ramp at the lower end of the park is suitable for all types of boats at normal lake level and has a courtesy dock for loading and unloading boats.

Nearby Attractions:

Numerous amenities, as well as cultural and historical attractions, lie in the nearby cities of Dallas and Fort Worth.

Activities and Amenities

Within Facility
  • Accessible Flush Toilets
  • Boat Ramp
  • Boating
  • Drinking Water
  • Dump Station
  • Grills
  • Hiking
  • Horseback Riding
  • Parking Area
  • Pit Toilets
  • Ranger Station
  • Showers
Know Before You Go
  • The entrance station is open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily
  • Visitors with a pink "visitor" car pass must exit the park by 10 p.m. daily
  • To reserve an equestrian site, guests must have a horse with them and proof of a current Coggins test
  • Swimming pools are not allowed
  • Nothing may be nailed to trees or other plants.
  • A permit is required for special events or activities occurring in the park; applications must be submitted no later than 10 days prior to the event; Contact Bardwell Lake Office at 972-875-5711 for more information from Mon.-Fri. 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Multiple site rentals may be made by advance reservation only
  • All vehicle passes must be returned to the gate house upon final departure and check-out
  • Reservations made with a discount pass require presentation of the pass with valid photo ID upon check-in and re-entering the park. For more information about discount passesClick Here
  • All boats are subject to inspection for Zebra mussels, an invasive aquatic species; For more informationClick Here
  • Don't Move Firewood: Protect your forests from tree-killing pests by buying your firewood locally and burning it on-site. Visit Dontmovefirewood.org for further information.

Getting There:

GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
32.29306, -96.69389
32°17'35"N, 96°41'38"W

From Ennis, Texas: From Interstate 45, exit onto U.S. Highway 287 Bypass (exit #247). Travel 4.5 miles and exit at the Bardwell Lake exit sign. Turn left onto Highway 34 and travel three miles southwest to Bozek Road. Turn right at Bozek Road and travel 1.5 miles to the Waxahachie Creek Park entrance complex.

Contact Information:

Mailing Address:

ENNIS  TX  75119

Phone Number:

Information:  (972)875-5711
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Bureau of Land Management Federal Highway Administration National Oceanic Atmosphere Administration Smithsonian Institution USDA Forest Service US Army Corps of Engineers US Fish and Wildlife Service National Park Service Bureau of Engraving and Printing Tennessee Valley Authority Bureau of Reclamation National Archives Records Administration