TPWD: Spring into parks with new mobile app

Texas State Parks Official Guide available for Apple, Android

SAN ANTONIO – While some people flock to major cities over spring break, others enjoy spending the time off in the great outdoors.

There's now a mobile app for those searching for the nearest Texas state park. The Texas State Parks Official Guide was created by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. It was made possible, in part, by the support of Toyota and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation, according to a news release.

The app was released on Monday, March 7. Within six hours of launching, it was downloaded 10,000 times by Apple and Android users. It took about 10 months to develop.

"Texans deserve world-class parks and this is going to help with that," said Tim Peterson, the creative and interactive services senior director at TPWD.

The new app allows people to have access to information about 95 state parks in the palm of their hand. Some things included are weather alerts, entry fee prices and what sort out activities the parks offer.

"The developers on this, we're all park users," Peterson said. "We have a passion for this and it's exciting for us to do this."

The small team also in charge of managing TPWD's website created the app.

"Now that I know about it, I'll download it," said John Lewis, who was visiting from Tennessee when KSAT-12 caught up with him at McKinney Falls State Park.

Developers spent time in parks talking with visitors so they could provide the best user experience when the app was launched.

For more information or to download the Texas State Park Official Guide, click here. The app is available for free on iOS for iPhone and iPad. It is also free in the Google Play store for Android smartphones and tablets.

The mobile app is a work in progress. Developers would like park users to be able to make camping reservations directly in the app in the near future.