The Angelina National Forest is located east of Lufkin, and is composed of 153,179 acres within parts of San Augustine, Angelina, Jasper, and Nacogdoches counties. Named for an Indian maiden who is praised in the journals of the first Spanish and French explorers to come to the area, the forest lies within the Neches River Basin and on the north end of the Sam Rayburn Reservoir, a 114,500-acre lake on the Angelina River formed by the construction of Sam Rayburn Dam in the early 1960’s. In 1934, the Texas Legislature approved a resolution to urge federal purchase of land to create National Forests in Texas. In 1935, acquisition began on the Davy Crockett, Sam Houston, Angelina and Sabine National Forests.
The Angelina National Forest is bisected by the Sam Rayburn Reservoir. The southern portion of the forest is dominated by Longleaf Pine trees, while Loblolly and Shortleaf Pine trees dominate the northern portion. The Angelina National Forest provides excellent wildlife viewing opportunities with hundreds of wildlife species present in the forest.
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