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Texas | State Parks

Meridian State Park

By Sam Fenstermacher

Location | History | Recreation | Near By
TX - Meridian State Park, Bosque Lake
A view of Lake Bosque from the Bee Ledge Scenic Overlook.
Photo courtesy Sam Fenstermacher

Park Location

173 Park Road 7
Meridian, TX 76665
31.889266, -97.702365 (latitude, longitude)
(254) 435-2536

Meridian State Park is located three miles southwest of Meridian Texas on State Highway 22 in Bosque County. The park is located along the 98th meridian in an area of transition from prairies to hill country.

Park History

Like so many Texas state parks constructed in the 1930's, Meridian State Park was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps. Skilled World War I veterans from CCC Company 1827 constructed Meridian State Park between July 1933 and October 1934. A small group of men from CCC Company 817 finished work on the park between October 1934 and March 1935 with the park opening to the public in 1935. Meridian was one of the first Texas CCC state parks finished and available to travelers for the Texas Centennial Celebration of 1936.

CCC Company 1827 accomplished a lot in its short time at Meridian. They built a dam across Bee Creek to impound 72 acre Lake Bosque, the most prominent landscape feature at the park, and they built a refectory on a hillside above the lake. A refectory, by the way, is a building that provides public space, restrooms, and a concession area.

Civilian Conservation Corps Company 1827 also built the entrance portal, five miles of scenic roads, culverts, and several bridges within the park. There are two smaller bridges on the section of park road going to the Shinnery Ridge Trail, and there’s a larger vehicle bridge on the park road going to the Bee Ledge Scenic Overlook.
TX - Meridian State Park, Bosque Lake
A view of the concession building and pergola at Meridian State Park
Photo courtesy Sam Fenstermacher

Recreation

72-acre Lake Bosque is the recreational centerpiece of the park. Swimming and picnicking are popular during the Summer months. Fishing and no-wake boating, canoeing and kayaking are other recreational options.

The park lies in a region of gently rolling hills with varied flora. Areas north and west of the lake tend to be on higher ground. Wildflower displays can be nice in this area of the park during the Spring months. Bird watching is another popular recreation in the Spring. The trails within the entire park offer topographic and scenic variety.

Camping facilities are limited at this park so plan ahead during the busy season. Meridian State Park has more than a dozen screen shelters available and some of them are on the lake near the concession building. You might consider them as an alternative to the camping area.

Meridian State Park is a great little park just far enough away from Dallas, Fort Worth, and Waco to be convenient for day use. This is one of the earliest parks constructed by The Civilian Conservation Corps in Texas. The architecture and landscapes here are quite good. The combination of rolling hills, green meadows, and 72-acre Lake Bosque make for a wonderful experience. The wildflowers at this park are a bonus in the Spring.
TX - Meridian State Park, bluebonnets
Wildflowers growing in the field along the park road
Photo courtesy Sam Fenstermacher, March 2012
Near By
The town of Meridian is just a few miles up State Highway 22. Meridian is the county seat of Bosque County, and It has a classic old county courthouse that occupies the center of the town square. Clifton and Glen Rose are two other charming little towns that you may want to visit while in the area.
TX - Meridian State Park Reflectory
The concession building at Meridian State Park
Photo courtesy Sam Fenstermacher, March 2012
TX - Meridian State Park sign
The entrance portal at Meridian State Park
Photo courtesy Sam Fenstermacher, March 2012
TX - Meridian State Park bridge
Vehicle bridge constructed by the CCC
Photo courtesy Sam Fenstermacher, March 2012
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© Sam Fenstermacher
February 28, 2013

Author's note
:
When I site dates and facts of history about Texas CCC state parks it's very likely that information came from the book Parks for Texas: Enduring Landscapes of the New Deal by James Wright Steely.

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