By Austin Cowan
Blog Content Contributor
The Outdoor Center is the perfect place to rent equipment for outdoor recreation. Located in Sewell Park, the Outdoor Center is owned and operated by Texas State University, so a Texas State ID is required to rent out equipment. The Outdoor Center allows people without kayaks, canoes, river tubes and other outdoor gear to gain access to the same river activities as people who can afford expensive equipment. The Outdoor Center is a great resource to take advantage of in order to enjoy the San Marcos River to its fullest. In order to gain the maximum San Marcos experience one must visit the Outdoor Center.
A Texas State ID is needed to rent tubes, boats, camping supplies, sports equipment, etc.
The river tubes are a huge attraction for the Center especially during the summer. The price for renting a tube is six dollars, which is cheaper than other tube rental places in the San Marcos area. A twenty-five dollar deposit is required for each tube rental, which will be returned once the Outdoor Center gets their tube back.
A shuttle is not provided for tubers to ride back on the Outdoor Center, so tubers must find other methods of transportation from Rio Vista Park back to Sewell Park. I have rented tubes from the Outdoor Center before and the walk back is a little less than a mile, which is not bad because it is through a park the entire time. Click here to go to a map showing the fastest and most scenic route from Rio Vista Park back to Sewell Park.
One of the best benefits of the Outdoor Center is the boat rentals. The price for boat rentals varies from ten dollars to $30 depending on what kind of boat is rented and how long the rental period is. It is commonplace, especially on sunny days, to see kayakers out on the water. As a person who has spent probable weeks of my time paddling up and downstream the San Marcos River, this really is the best way to experience the river. Renting a kayak/paddleboard from the Outdoor Center is the perfect way to take an ordinary day and make it into an adventurous one.
For anybody who loves camping, the Outdoor Center rents camp gear: stoves, tents, sleeping bags, water jugs, lanterns, and etc. The cost for each piece of equipment would be appealing for those who camp infrequently.
The Outdoor Center is where someone can sign up for the Adventure Trip Program (ATP). ATP offers weekend to week long trips. During the ATP campers can participate in kayaking, rock climbing, backpacking or any outdoor activity fitting the campers’ needs. Custom Trip Programming (CTP) is an extreme experience. During a CTP groups of friends can make a reservation for a three-hour white water rafting trip. This extreme experience is one that most people dream of going on some day. Turn your dreams into reality and go on a trip with ATP. It will be an experience you will not soon forget.
Another advantage the Outdoor Center offers for Texas State students is that this is the place where university students can reserve Sewell Park for organizational events. Campus events take place at Sewell Park all year round. So if you want to use the volleyball courts or the outdoor theatre, a reservation is the only way to be guaranteed to do so. Reservations fill up quickly so act fast, and go to the Outdoor Center.
Lastly, the Outdoor Center is where a person can make reservations for the University Campsite. The University Campsite is owned by Texas State University and is located in Wimberley, TX. Reservations can be made for both tent campsites and cabins. This campsite is located along the Blanco River and has many fields for group games and a system of scenic hiking trails. The University Camp is a place where Texas State students mostly exchange the stress of everyday life for a weekend out in the woods with friends.
The Outdoor Center offers people many opportunities. It is definitely a stop one must take when pursuing the maximum San Marcos experience.
Featured image by Renee Dominguez.