Lake Houston Texas Information

Lake Houston is in Harris County, Texas, with its southern shores 16 miles northeast of downtown Houston. The west and east forks of the San Jacinto River on Lake Houston’s northern border flows into Lake Houston, flows into the Gulf of Mexico from Lake Houston’s southern end via several reservoirs and bays, and finally Galveston Bay. Towns and communities heavily populate Lake Houston’s surrounding shores.

Lake Houston covers 11,854 acres with a maximum depth of 46 feet. The City of Houston owns Lake Houston, and the Coastal Water Authority (CWA) of Texas maintains the lake. Lake Houston combines the best of lake life with the best of city living. FM 1960 crosses the northern end of Lake Houston. It is located within the Gulf Coastal Plain biome, which encompasses the Louisiana and Texas coastlines.

Rolling hills characterize Lake Houston’s shoreline with temperate grasslands. Most of the region was a treeless prairie before settlement. Cotton farming was predominant during early settlement. Groundwater resources are shrinking in the Gulf Coastal Plains due to overuse. The Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) adopted the 2022 State Water Plan to address long-term water needs while protecting its growing economy and population.

History of Lake Houston

The San Jacinto Dam construction began in 1951 and was completed in 1953 for municipal, industrial, recreational, mining, and irrigation purposes. Deliberate impoundment of water of Lake Houston began in 1954. Lake Houston’s history lies within the towns of Atascocita, Humble, and Kingwood, Texas.

Thousands of years ago, Akokisa Indians called Harris County, Texas, home. Archeologists unearthed artifacts from two phases in Harris County, the early ceramic period, which runs from 8,100 B.C. to 800, and the late ceramic period from 800 to when the Europeans arrived. The Akokisas roamed throughout the greater Houston area in five villages by the mid-1700s. They provided for themselves as hunters and gatherers and nomads. They fished along the upper coast of Galveston Bay during the summer before moving inland for the winter.

The Spanish built the Atascocito Road, pronounced "A-tusk-a-cee-to", which was basically a trail in circa 1756. The modern Atascocita Road, follows the path of its original trail. The old road began in present-day El Paso and followed a route through San Antonio, Houston, Liberty, and Beaumont, Texas, then terminated in Opelousas, Louisiana. The Atascocito Road was especially important in later years for driving cattle eastward to Louisiana. Today, that same road is FM 1960, and it was named Atascocita Road, turning it into the Spanish language feminine form.

Humble, Texas, originally came to be as a small lumber community in the 1880s, became an oil boomtown in the early 1900s, and then grew into a small city in the 1930s. Its population had significantly declined by the 1950s, and then came Lake Houston in 1954. Lake Houston brought recreational boating and water sports to the area along with visitors and an economic boost. Humble, which used to be out in the country, became a suburb of and a 20-minute drive from Houston.

Kingwood, Texas, was originally a project of the Friendswood Development Company, an Exxon subsidiary, and the King Ranch. The King Ranch is located miles away from Lake Houston, but the founders, Richard King and Gideon K. Lewis, had long arms in Texas and Texas economic and agricultural development. After the founding of the King Ranch in 1853, throughout the years, ownership remained in the King family. Today the King Ranch is a professionally managed, family-owned enterprise with its headquarters in Houston.

Two brothers, John Kirby Allen and Augustus Chapman Allen, bought 6,600 acres on the banks of Buffalo Bayou for a new town after Texas won its independence from Mexico at the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836. For an investment of less than $10,000, the Allen brothers opened a trading post and became the founding fathers of Houston, Texas, which is now the fourth largest city in the U.S., an economic powerhouse and a capital of industry. Fast-forward two centuries, and Harris County has flourished in the face of many obstacles, especially with hurricanes and flooding. 

In 2020, Partnership Lake Houston, a new organization, formed as the merger of two local entities, the Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce and the Lake Houston Area Economic Development Partnership. The chamber, which is overseen by community leaders, serves as a voice for the business communities in Humble, Kingwood, Atascocita, Fall Creek, and Summerwood, Texas. Lake Houston is an important part of Harris County, and a strong economic bastion for the future of communities and towns, businesses, and residents who live on and near Lake Houston.

Fishing Lake Houston

Predominant game species in Lake Houston are largemouth and white bass, blue catfish, bluegill, and white crappie. Other species include spotted, hybrid striped, striped, and yellow bass, bowfin, channel and flathead catfish, black crappie, longear sunfish, and tilapia. Little cover and structural habitat exists in the major body of Lake Houston.

Some fish cover lies in the northern part of the lake in the west and east forks of the San Jacinto River. Most of the shoreline surrounding Lake Houston is not accessible for fishing from the bank. Canoes and kayaks provide the best substitution for shoreline fishing. There are two marinas without fuel docks, public boat ramps, and some private boat ramps for the communities surrounding Lake Houston.

Lake Houston boat ramps can launch all types of boats for fishing, water sports, and sightseeing. You need a valid Texas resident or non-resident fishing license. Children under the age of 17 and Texas residents born before 1931 do not need a license. Louisiana residents over 65 with a Louisiana license can fish without a Texas license, and Oklahoma residents over the age of 65 can fish without a license on Lake Houston.

Fishing tournaments are regular events on Lake Houston, especially in the summer season. Houston’s location just off the Gulf of Mexico, plus the many lakes and bays near Lake Houston, supports tons of fishing guide services that operate all over Harris County and the Gulf of Mexico.

Find experienced local guides on our Lake Houston Fishing Guides page.

Boating Lake Houston

Lake Houston’s expanse and mixture of urban and natural surrounding offers boaters much to see along with several islands. The east and west forks of the San Jacinto River on upper Lake Houston are popular with canoe and kayak enthusiasts because of the many creeks and tributaries, inlets, and coves. There is plenty of room for all watersports and pleasure boating. The marinas rent boats and personal watercraft, along with several boat rental services around Lake Houston.

There are two marinas on the east side of Lake Houston, but they do not have gas docks or boat slip rentals on the lake. The Lake Houston Marina offers a boat launch, five  fishing piers, a playground, picnic tables, covered patios, grills and smokers, dry boat storage, an RV park, and marina store with bait, tackle, beer, and snacks. The Fairlake Houston Marina has a boat ramp, a playground, a marina store, restrooms, a pier, and hamburgers.

Find or sell a boat on our Lake Houston Boats for Sale page.

Lake Houston Real Estate

Living on Lake Houston offers a variety of lifestyles like golf course communities, country living properties, and upscale apartments, plus access to everything in the big city of Houston, Texas. Boundaries include the City of Humble, and the portion of northeast Harris County and south Montgomery County from New Caney to the north, Huffman to the east, Aldine-Westfield Road to the west, and Beltway 8 to the south.

Typically, around 40 lake homes and 30 lots and land listings are for sale on Lake Houston. Homes have an average list price of $348,976, and also properties for lower price points. Humble ISD provides most of the public education around Lake Houston. The George Bush Intercontinental Airport is only 12 miles away. Plenty of restaurants and nightlife venues are just a few minutes drive from Lake Houston’s shores.

To find your dream lake home, explore our Lake Houston Homes for Sale page.

Lake Houston Cabins and Vacation Homes

Numerous options for vacation home rentals on Lake Houston’s shores and close to Lake Houston are available from five bedrooms to one bedroom with modern features, pools, decks, private docks, and more. There are very few cabin rentals, but there are tiny homes and luxury apartments for rent on the lake, and a few hotels within a few minutes. The Lake Houston Wilderness Park has the only cabin and A-frame rentals on the north side of Lake Houston.

Find the perfect vacation home on our Lake Houston Cabins page.

Camping at Lake Houston

Homes, communities, and private properties mostly surround Lake Houston’s shores. The campgrounds and RV parks are located on the less populated northern area around the east and west forks of the San Jacinto River, and their tributaries. The Lake Houston Wilderness Park is almost 5,000 acres of lush forest with primitive campsites, cabins, group campsites, and group lodges. It is the only overnight campground on Lake Houston.

This park offers a variety of outdoor experiences for camping, hiking, trail running, mountain biking, canoeing, kayaking, birding, fishing, and horseback riding trails. Visitors must bring own bikes, fishing equipment, watercraft, and horses. It has an archery range by reservation only. You can make online reservations for campsites and cabins.

Check out our list of campgrounds and RV parks for your family adventure on our Lake Houston Camping page.

Trails at Lake Houston

Lake Houston Wilderness Park offers 20 miles of hiking, mountain biking, and equestrian trails through nearly 5,000 acres. There are 12 miles of hiking trail and 8 miles of trail for equestrians. The park’s 12 trails range from 3.8 miles to 0.3 miles long. Horse trailer parking is off of FM 1485 on Highland Loop Road and 5-Mile Road.

The Atascocita Hike and Bike Trail is located at Kings Park Way in Atascocita. It is a 0.7-mile trail for hikers and bikes two miles west of Lake Houston off of FM 1960. Dogs are welcome on a leash.

The Walden Dog Park and Walking Trail is at 18406 Mariner Plaza in Humble on the middle of Lake Houston’s eastern shore. This is a small park surrounded by homes.

The San Jacinto Trail Loop in the Dwight D. Eisenhower Park on the south side of Lake Houston is a 3.2-mile loop that is flat and takes you through wetlands. Deer are present in the morning at times. 

Things to Do At Lake Houston

With the recreation of Lake Houston and the San Jacinto River, the proximity of Bush Intercontinental Airport and the Port of Houston, and the quality of its many subdivisions, the Lake Houston area is a strong attraction for commuters from downtown Houston.

The Joe Turner Nature Center is located within the Lake Houston Wilderness Park (LHWP). The Piney Woods ecoregion is explored, and you can learn about the woodland animals that call the LHWP home. The LHWP displays several exciting exhibits.

The Ecosystem Displays features the Wetlands Ecosystem Room with live fish and turtles. The Interesting Inverts Room features spiders and mounted insects of all types. The Reptile and Amphibians Room contains live specimens of both venomous and non-venomous snakes as well as several lizards and amphibians. The Eye on the Wilderness is a display of local flora and fauna with lighting and sound effects. You can explore the history of the park in a classroom or participate in a naturalist lead program.

Take the kids to Old MacDonald’s Farm at 3203 FM 1960 E, Humble, Texas. This 15-acre outdoor park features petting zoo barns with animals from goats, sheep, pigs, and cows to exotic animals like deer, llamas, and emus, plus pony rides, a train ride, a duck pond, play forts, and a swimming pool. It opens at 10am daily and all activities are included in the admission.

The Mercer Botanic Gardens comprises 393 acres in Humble, Texas, at 22306 Aldine Westfield Road. Its botanic gardens consist of over 60 acres of gardens that feature bamboo, color displays, daylilies, endangered species, ferns, gingers, herbs, and tropicals. The East Side has an extensive walking trail system, a Remembrance Walk for memorials and honorariums, ponds, a visitors’ center, and a courtyard plaza.

Visit the breweries near Lake Houston. Check out Ingenious Brewing Company in Humble. You will find over 20 small-batch brews and a taproom with TVs, games, steak night, “yappy hour”, and food trucks. On the edge of Kingwood and Porter, Back Pew Brewing offers brews in an old church. In Kingwood, the 15-barrel brew house Megaton Brewery rocks arcade games, video games, billiards, and air hockey. Right off of Lake Houston in Huffman, the Lake Houston Brewery is a family-owned spot with craft suds, fried shrimp, fish tacos and more.

Along with the above attractions near Lake Houston, the City of Houston has so much to offer in the entertainment arena. Houston has some of the best restaurants Texas has to give from BBQ to fine dining. The best nightlife districts in Houston include Downtown, Midtown, Montrose, Washington Avenue, and Rice Village.

Houston’s cultural attractions include the Houston Museum District, an internationally recognized arts center with Hermann Park, the Houston Zoo, and 19 world-class museums. The Space Center Houston at 1601 NASA Parkway, Houston, Texas, is a must see. It is the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center, and is Houston’s number one attraction for international visitors and the first Smithsonian Affiliate in the greater Houston area.

Plan your trip activities on our What To Do At Lake Houston page.

Lake Houston Weather & Climate

Lake Houston sees an average of 53 inches of rain, with no snow, and 204 days of sunshine per year. The winter low in January is 43 degrees, with a summer high in July of 93 degrees. March, April, and October are the most comfortable months for this region. July and August are the least comfortable months.

Keep an eye on the skies with our Lake Houston Weather Forecast page.

Lake Houston Zip Codes

Harris County:

77001, 77002, 77003, 77004, 77005, 77006, 77007, 77008, 77009, 77010, 77011, 77012, 77013, 77014, 77015, 77016, 77017, 77018, 77019, 77020, 77021, 77022, 77023, 77024, 77025, 77026, 77027, 77028, 77029, 77030, 77031, 77032, 77033, 77034. 77035, 77036. 77037, 77038, 77039, 77040, 77041, 77042, 77043, 77044, 77045, 77046, 77047, 77048, 77049, 77050, 77051, 77052, 77053, 77054, 77055, 77056, 77057, 77058, 77059, 77060, 77061, 77062, 77063, 77064, 77065, 77066, 77067, 77068, 77069, 77070, 77071, 77072, 77073, 77074, 77075, 77076, 77077, 77078, 77079, 77080, 77081, 77082, 77083, 77084, 77085, 77086, 77087, 77088, 77089, 77090, 77091, 77092, 77093, 77094, 77095, 77096, 77097, 77098, 77099, 77201, 77202, 77203, 77204, 77205, 77206, 77207, 77208, 77209, 77210, 77212, 77213, 77215, 77216, 77217, 77218, 77219, 77220, 77221, 77222, 77223, 77224, 77225, 77226, 77227, 77228, 77229, 77230, 77231, 77233, 77234, 77235, 77236, 77237, 77238, 77240, 77241, 77242, 77243, 77244, 77245,  77246. 77247, 77248, 77249, 77250, 77251, 77252, 77253, 77254, 77255, 77256, 77257, 77258, 77259, 77260, 77261, 77262, 77263, 77265, 77266, 77267, 77268, 77269, 77270, 77271, 77272, 77273, 77274, 77275, 77276, 77277, 77278, 77279, 77280, 77281, 77282, 77284, 77285, 77286, 77287, 77288, 77289, 77290, 77291, 77292, 77293, 77294, 77296, 77297, 77298, 77299, 77315, 77336, 77337, 77338, 77339, 77345, 77346, 77347, 77357, 77373, 77375, 77377, 77379, 77383, 77388, 77389, 77391, 77396, 77401, 77402, 77410, 77411, 77413, 77429, 77433, 77447, 77449, 77450, 77484, 77491, 77493, 77501, 77502, 77503, 77504, 77505, 77506, 77507, 77508, 77520, 77521, 77522, 77530, 77532, 77536, 77546, 77547, 77562, 77571, 77572, 77586, 77587, 7759.

Lake Houston Flora and Fauna

Lake Houston supports a mixture of second-growth pines and hardwoods. Common wildlife sightings include armadillos, bats, bobcats, coyotes, deer, foxes, raccoons, snakes and other reptiles, skunks, and turtles. Birders can find blue jays, dove, ducks and waterfowl, hawks, killdeer, mockingbirds, and owls. Wildflower and shrub displays include black-eyed Susans, eastern purple coneflowers, yaupon holly, Texas lantana, Gulf Coast muhly, southern wax myrtle, inland sea oats, autumn sage, and red Turk’s cap.

Lake Houston Texas Email Updates


Lake Houston Texas Current Weather Alerts

There are no active watches, warnings or advisories.


Lake Houston Texas Weather Forecast


Decreasing Clouds

Hi: 92

Saturday Night

Mostly Cloudy

Lo: 78


Partly Sunny

Hi: 93

Sunday Night

Partly Cloudy

Lo: 80

Memorial Day

Partly Sunny

Hi: 96

Monday Night

Partly Cloudy

Lo: 78


Mostly Sunny

Hi: 92

Tuesday Night

Mostly Cloudy

Lo: 77

Lake Houston Texas Water Level (last 30 days)

Water Level on 5/25: 41.92 (-0.08)

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