Devils River State Natural Area

Devils River State Natural Area

All camping and facility stays are by reservation only. Reservations must be made at least one day in advance. The park is unable to accept payments of any kind.

Things to Do

Fed by numerous clear springs within the region's karst topography, the Devils River is one of the most ecologically intact rivers in Texas. From the hilltops and water's edge of Devils River State Natural Area, visitors can revel in the sight and sound of the river's waters tumbling over limestone past rugged ridges, canyons and grassy banks, giving life to diverse plants and wildlife.

The 37,000-acre state natural area consists of two units -- the original 20,000-acre state natural area, now called Del Norte, and the newly acquired 17,000-acre unit known as Big Satan. At Del Norte, which is open to the public, visitors can enjoy day hiking, primitive camping, nature viewing, mountain biking, horseback riding, swimming, and guided rock art tours (by appointment). Big Satan is not yet open to the public.

Devils River State Natural Area is unique in that it is primitive and isolated, with few amenities and no landscaped playgrounds. Visitors should bring their own food and water and be prepared for a rugged wilderness experience.

If you plan to swim at the park, read through our swimming safety tips before you come.

Preparing for a Trip on the Devils River

The wild, scenic Devils River draws kayakers and canoers seeking to paddle 47 miles from the paddler put-in at Baker's Crossing at Highway 163, or 32 miles from Del Norte, downriver to Lake Amistad National Recreation Area. However, a Devils River trip is highly strenuous and recommended ONLY for experienced paddlers equipped to spend at least three days in a remote area.

Access to the river in Del Norte (0.9 miles from the parking area) is by hiking, biking or prearranged tour only; no public vehicle access is permitted. No motorized boats are allowed.

A Devils River State Natural Area Access Permit (DRSNAAP) is required for all trips on the Devils River which access Devils River State Natural Area units. The cost of a DRSNAAP is $10. Read more information about how to obtain a DRSNAAP and how to prepare for a trip on the Devils River.

Public Use and Planning

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is developing a general management plan for the Devils River State Natural Area (SNA) to allow for sustainable, resource-based recreation. The plan allows for put-ins and take-outs on the SNA properties at river miles 0, 15 and 30. TPWD has established shuttle service agreements that allow outfitters to shuttle river users to Baker's Crossing (river mile 0) or San Pedro Point (river mile 15) in Del Norte; and allow them to be picked up at Big Satan.

In order to prepare for the opening of the south unit and to preserve the ecological integrity of the Devils River and surrounding lands, Texas Parks and Wildlife has been working with stakeholders and the public to develop plans for Devils River State Natural Areas, as well as for responsible long-term public use of the Devils River.

Educational Programs

Visitation of archeological sites are permitted on a pre-approved basis only. For natural and cultural resource tour arrangements, call (830) 395-2133. There are no regularly scheduled educational programs. Availability of tours is limited due to staffing constraints.

Area Attractions

Nearby attractions include Seminole Canyon State Park & Historic SiteKickapoo Cavern State Park, Amistad National Recreation Area, and the cities of Del Rio and Ciudad Acuña. More information on Lake Amistad can be found at the Amistad National Recreation Area website, the International Boundary & Water Commission website and the TPWD Amistad Reservoir website.

HC 01, P.O. Box 513
Del Rio, TX 78840

Latitude: 29.929326

Longitude: -100.942938

(830) 395-2133

Reserve by phone: (512) 389-8901
Reserve by fax

Entrance Fees
  • Free Day Use. Camping Fees: Contact the Park
Hours

Open Friday through Monday for day use or reserved drive-in camping. All camping and facility stays are by reservation only, at least one day in advance (512) 389-8901. 

River campsites are open seven days a week for paddlers with advance permits to camp at the SNA on their way downriver.

No processing of fees is available at this State Natural Area.

Permits are also required to camp at Amistad National Recreation Area (830) 775-8779.

Climate

It gets very hot in this part of Texas during the summer, so dress and prepare accordingly. Rainfall: 17.2 inches; January minimum: 38 degrees; July maximum: 98 degrees. Current campsites offer minimal shade.

National Weather Service forecast for this area
Elevation

1,300 feet - 2,080 feet.

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