When Lone Star surfers head to “Gorda” for some of the Gulf Coast’s best waves, they actually have in mind the Matagorda sandbars near the mouth of the Colorado River on the mainland. But some take a boat to nearby Matagorda Island, where miles of unnamed beachbreaks await. Note: watch out for strong currents, stingrays, and jellyfish…
Small boats also cruise these waters for red drum, spotted sea trout, and tarpon, but the park itself is the realm of surf-fishermen, who can stake out acres of sand for themselves – and compete in a fall surf-fishing tournament.
Birdwatching is serious sport along the Gulf Coast, and more than 300 species have been recorded on the island, most of them during spring and fall migrations. Some of the more rare birds include whooping cranes and peregrine falcons. Other local creatures, great and small, include deer, porpoises, alligators, and mosquitoes (yes, bring some repellent).