East Texas- Summer’s grip has finally given way to fall and the luscious green countryside has slowly and quietly exploded with rich autumn colors. East Texas is a sight to behold in the fall, with yellow oak trees, orange sweetgums, deep red dogwood trees dappled among the might every greens. Fill up your tank, grab your cameras, and take an East Texas fall road trip today!
East Texas comes alive with peak color typically occurring mid-November. Take the opportunity to enjoy the natural beauty of the region during this seasonal transition.
Get off the beaten path this autumn! Take any farm-to-market road in East Texas for prime fall foliage viewing and a real Texas experience.
“A good stretch of farm road is the apotheosis of a very Texan institution—the drive for no other purpose than to get the feel of the country—and that is why the farm-to-market road is to Texas what the freeway is to California: not just a highway but a symbol of the culture.”~ Paul Burka- Texas Monthly
Visit any state park in East Texas and for exceptional fall foliage viewing. Find a state park in East Texas HERE.
My East Texas has compiled a list of routes that usually yield incredible fall foliage and photo opportunities. Take any farm-to-market road off these routes for extended viewing pleasure.
Fall Foliage Driving Routes
1. Hwy 19 S from Palestine to Crockett- 35.3 miles
- See some of the oldest architecture in the state, second only to Galveston, in Historic Downtown Palestine and don’t forget to visit the Museum for East Texas Culture!
- Visit Houston County, the first county established under the Republic of Texas.
- Numerous photo opportunities along this stretch of highway between Palestine and Crockett.
- Davey Dogwood Park- Palestine, Texas- The rolling hills of Davey Dogwood Park, located at 210 North Link St., off North Loop 256 in Palestine, are beautiful any time of year. Spring and fall offer amazing color for picnics, photo shoots, hiking, or just a drive.
2. Hwy 21 E from Crockett to Nacogdoches, along the El Camino Real- 59.6 miles
- Visit Mission Tejas State Park and the Caddo Indian Mounds State Historic Site along the way. Visit the oldest county in Texas and the oldest town in Texas all in one day, or make it a weekend trip and really experience East Texas history! Both sites will offer spectacular photo opportunities.
3. Hwy 43 N from Henderson to Uncertain- 62.4 miles
- This stretch of highway typically yields amazing fall color every year. The rolling hills and open meadows allow for excellent photo opportunities. Visit the Depot Museum in Henderson and the only natural lake in Texas- Caddo Lake, which can be accessed from Uncertain.
4. Hwy 69 S from Tyler to Rusk- 41.5 miles
- See the “Tomato Capital of the World”- Jacksonville, Texas! Stop by Love’s LookoutPark and get a 30-mile glimpse of the colorful countryside.
- See the Nation’s longest footbridge, visit the Texas State Railroad, and Jim Hogg State Park in Rusk Texas.
5. Traveling East out of Tyler on Hwy 31 to Kilgore- 26.3 miles
- Visit the East Texas Oil Museum and the World’s Richest Acre in Kilgore.
6. Hwy 19 N from Palestine to Athens- 34.7 miles
- Numerous photo opportunities along a stretch of highway that yields vibrant fall color.
- Visit the East Texas Arboretum and the Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center in Athens.
- Take the extended scenic route- Piney Woods Autumn Trail
7. Texas State Railroad- Palestine/Rusk– 30.4 miles
- One of the best ways to enjoy the East Texas color show is to climb aboard the Texas State Railroad, which offers a historic ride on restored vintage steam or diesel trains. The service offers numerous excursions including a route winding between the Palestine and Rusk Depots. Find out more about the Texas State Railroad!
8. HWY 14 N from Tyler to Winnsboro- 49.2 miles
- Hwy 14 N traveling from Tyler all the way to Winnsboro is a great stretch of highway to travel chasing fall colors. The rolling hills and open hays afford several stops with great views of reds, dark burgundy, deep golds and yellow dotted with shades of green. Please note the large number of dairies along the highway.
9. HWY 16 E from Lindale to Winona- 15.5 miles
- Hwy 16 traveling East from Lindale to Winona and on to Highway 271. Lots of photo opportunities of barns, horses and exotic animals. There are several bodies of water and creeks along the way.
10. Hwy 84 E from Palestine to Mt Enterprise- 60.2 miles
- HWY 84 from Palestine to Mt. Enterprise is dappled with numerous sweet gum trees, as well as other trees sure to turn eye catching colors as the days move forward.
- Travel through several small communities along this stretch of highway, some of which are now ghost towns.
11. HWY 80 from Marhsall to Mineola- 68.5 miles
- Visit the Mineola Nature Preserve for incredible photo opportunities.
12. HWY 49 from Jefferson to Mt. Pleasant- 51.3 miles
- Visit Dangerfield State park along the way for exceptional views of one of Texas’ state parks during the fall.
- Jefferson’s historic home district is always a great place for photos, and with fall colors moving in the historic homes are adorned with natural color.
13. HWY 190 E from Livingston to Jasper- 60.4 miles
- Numerous photo opportunities. BA Steinhagen Lake typically offers beautiful views.
14. US 96 N from Jasper to San Augustine- 46 miles
- Travel between the Sabine National Forest and the Angelina National Forest for a opportunity to spot fall color nestled in among these mighty evergreen forests.
Email your fall foliage photos to firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to have your photo featured My East Texas. Upload your your fall foliage photos to our Facebook page, or simply hashtag your fall foliage photos with #MYETX on Instagram.