Bluebonnet Season is an abbreviated season in Texas, with the peak usually in mid-April. Drivers congest the highway service roads for pictures and take long Sunday drives with their families. All too quickly, the blue fields fade away as the sides of the roads are taken over by thistle, Indian paintbrushes, Mexican hats and black-eyed susans, as the spring days get longer and warmer.
At over 40 miles of roadway, the Texas Legislature designated Ennis as the official Texas Bluebonnet Trail in 1997. Here are some of our favorite stops and roads just to roll the windows down and enjoy the views!
This is an annual event for us, so enjoy some pictures from this year and year’s past.
This year we took our dogs for pictures in bluebonnets with them. We went on a Tuesday morning, the best time for catching the right light for the lake.
The West Trail
Starting in Ennis, the West Trail has some of the best spots on the trail to stop the car, get out and take pictures. Our favorite is Meadow View Nature Area, south of I-45 on the shores of Bardwell Lake.
Entry to the seasonal park, which is only open during the month of April, is FREE.
The park has huge fields of bluebonnets!
It’s also pretty crowded on weekends during the Ennis Bluebonnet Festival.
We always seem to arrive in the evening, and the sun sets over the lake, so my kids faces are always in the shadows. For your best pictures, try to go in the morning.
You can get some amazing sunset pictures here, though!
You’ll see a few Indian Paintbrushes in the fields, too.
The park has picnic tables, porta-a-pottys and is dog friendly. There were quite a few dogs there. Be sure to take a bag to clean up after your dog, and some water!
Remember to Leave No Trace while at the park. Try not to step on the flowers, stay on the paths and please don’t pick the flowers!
Also, try to be aware of the people around you and don’t photo bomb their pictures if you can help it.
Just a few more shots meant to give you an idea of how it looks.
There were lots of families there taking pictures. In the couple of hours after dawn and before sunset, you’ll see many, many, many professional photographers.
Lake Bardwell is a fun lake, and there are 3 Army Corp of Engineer owned parks on the lake that allow camping at a very affordable price. You can also get in for free with a National Parks Pass.
The road to Waxahachie Creek Park, just across the lake from Meadow View, use to have huge sunflower fields, and is where we would go for our annual Sunflower pictures, because it was a safe little road and they grew almost right to it. I checked during our drive, and they didn’t have sunflowers planted this year.
An ant’s perspective….
Bluebonnet Park, off of Hwy 287, didn’t seem to have as many bluebonnets as Meadow View, and the lake isn’t as attractive, but I love the big trees.
Bluebonnet Park also has restrooms, baseball fields, a playground, cute picnic tables and restrooms!!
A large nature area on the West Trail. It’s lovely for pictures, but not as accessible as the other two parks.
For just enjoying a ride along country roads, I love the North Trail! You’ll see lots of horses and cattle out in the fields, which make for great photo ops. Try to stay in the car for your safety.
Sugar Ridge Winery, Bristol
Is a fun destination on this trail to stop and enjoy a glass of wine, and get some pictures of their bluebonnets! They are open daily during bluebonnet season.
Winding Ridge B&B
Right down from Sugar Ridge Winery is Winding Ridge B&B, a family-friendly scenic cabin, situated on 22 acres along the Ennis Bluebonnet Trail! Click HERE to visit their website, see their awesome pictures and make your reservations!
The South Trail has some pretty fields but if you’re limited to time, it would be my last one to do.
Things To Do in Ennis
Who says motor oil and flowers don’t mix? The Texas Motorplex in Ennis runs special event races. Click HERE for more information.
Bluebonnet BBQ on Hwy 287 has a huge backyard, live music, playground for the kids and just a fun time for everyone!
Ennis Bluebonnet Trails
6617 Padre Blvd., South Padre Island
Click HERE to visit their website.
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