Three streams flow into the park’s lake, Lake Raven – Prairie Branch, Big Chinquapin Creek and Little Chinquapin Creek. Prairie Branch drains the lake, joining East Sandy Creek which in turn feeds the West Fork of the San Jacinto River 6.8 miles downstream of the park.
The park is located in the West Gulf Coastal Plain physiographic province.
Within the park, the Willis Formation underlies the hills and higher places. This formation dates to the early Pleistocene epoch. The Fleming Formation lies underneath the Willis, exposed in lower areas of the park. The Fleming dates to the late Miocene epoch. (See the Geologic Atlas of Texas.)
Hike a forest trail or visit one of our wildlife blinds to observe animals on their home ground. Ask at headquarters for directions to the blinds.
Around 250 species of birds have been identified in the park.
During spring migration, many birds pass through the park. Wood warblers, thrushes and vireos are common in the park in late April and early May. In the summer, the forest is alive with the songs of breeding birds.
Find more information on the animals of Huntsville State Park:
- Birds of Huntsville State Park: A Field Checklist
- Look up birds on All About Birds
- Butterflies and Moths of Walker County
- Keep Texas Wild: Pineywoods (TPWD video)
- Texas Wildlife Fact Sheets
- Migration and the Migratory Birds of Texas
Located in the midst of the Sam Houston National Forest, the park is covered by a mixed pine-hardwood forest.
Loblolly pines form the canopy along with southern red oaks and sweetgums in the uplands. In lower areas, along streams and creeks, water oaks, white oaks, blackgum and sweetgum form the canopy. These communities intermingle on the many slopes in the park.
Smaller trees grow under the canopy: post oaks, mockernut hickory, ironwood, red maples and American holly. At various times of the year, you might see flowering plants such as dogwood, American beautyberry and Turk’s cap.
Find more information on the plants of Huntsville State Park:
- To look up an unknown plant, try Wildflower Center Native Plant Database
- Wildscapes: Plant Guidance by Ecoregion, East Texas Pineywoods
- Just for Kids: Leave it to Leaves