Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge, Sherman

It is so thrilling for me when my children and I read books together that I loved as a child.  It’s even more exciting when I see that the story has captured them in the same magic weave that I felt at their age.  One such story is The Snow Goose by Paul Gallico, written in 1940.  It is the story of a deformed artist living alone in England, a young girl and a lost and injured snow goose that brings them together.  The sad ending of the story impacted me so that I can still remember my mother reading it to me, late one night on a family camping trip in Freeport, while my father was out fishing for flounder.

Know Before You Go

Visit the Friends of Hagerman NWR website for upcoming events, including the FREE Second Saturday events, tram tours and Spring Break events!  Click HERE to visit that website.

I had been wanting to visit Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge in Sherman, and this was an excellent opportunity, since about 30,000 wild snow geese make it their winter home each year, from November to the end of February.  The massive waters of Lake Texoma attract the birds, and the refuge annually plants agricultural crops, such as wheat, as a food source for the birds.  As we arrived, we immediately saw a small flock flying low above us! I frantically took pictures as quickly as I could, fearing that this would be our only opportunity.  We drove on to the visitor center, and just this side of the iron gate sat about seven wild geese, posing for pictures!  We then looked in front of us, and saw thousands of white geese fillng the skies and pastures down toward the shores of the lake!  We were able to pull along side the road, amidst other cars and watch the birds from a very short distance.  They are simply amazing!   We did make time to drive around the numerous roads around the refuge, tour the visitor center and hike along the trails, but my heart was back watching the geese!

Visit the Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge website for more information on this fascinating place, and to see all that they offer, including interactive children’s classes each month.  http://www.fws.gov/southwest/refuges/texas/hagerman/index.html

Paul Gallico is the author of The Snow Goose, and other books, including The Poseidon Adventure.  For more information on his books; http://www.paulgallico.info/notitle.html

A Texas Connection – The Snow Goose won the O. Henry award in 1941.  This short story award is named for the American writer, William Sydney Porter, who wrote under the pen name, O. Henry.  Early in his career, Porter worked in Austin for the Texas General Land Office, and maps he drew, bearing his signature, are on display at the state capital.  Hmmm…. an idea for another road trip?

Things To Do in Sherman


Herman Baker Park, at 2500 W Center St., is a pretty park with a 1.8 mile mountain bike and hiking natural trail that goes around the small lake.

Hagerman National Wildlife Refuge

6465 Refuge Road, Sherman

Click HERE to visit their website.   

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