How To Get To The Smith Point Hawk Watch Tower at Candy Abshier WMA:

To reach Smith Point from Houston, take I-10 east to the Texas Hwy 61 exit. Turn south (right) on Hwy 61. In a few miles it changes number to FM 562 and continues south to Smith Point. At the intersection of FM 1985, which branches left at a Y intersection, continue right to Smith Point. Once in Smith Point continue on 562 past a small store/gas station (now closed) on the right. Hawkins Camp Road, another half mile farther on, leads to The Spoonbill RV Park and Lodge. The hawk tower is just past the intersection of 562 and Hawkins Camp Road where a sign directs you to the left and into the large parking area.

3rd Annual Smith Point Hawk Watch with Pete Vail

Oct 8, 2016 – Saturday

WHO: Members, alumni, and friends of the Department of Earth Science. Adjunct Faculty Malcolm Ross and professor Cin-Ty Lee are organizing the trip.  Contact Cin-Ty at for more information (281 250 3606)

WHEN:  Meet at 7:50 AM at the Space Science Loading Dock just north of the department of Earth Science. We will carpool and depart Rice at 8 AM to arrive at Smith Point by 1000 AM.  Alternatively, you can meet us directly at the Smith Point Hawk Tower at 10  AM. It is a 1.5 hour drive from Houston.  Trip will be a half day outing. We will eat lunch at Anahuac NWR.

WHAT TO EXPECT: We will be at the peak of hawk migration as the hawks from across North American funnel southwards to Central America. If the winds are right, we may see thousands of hawks.  We will watch hawks for a few hours and then we will head on over to Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge to look at alligators and waterbirds.

WHAT TO BRING: a pair of binoculars if you have one, but it is not necessary.  But do bring a hat, sun block, water, and bug spray (shouldn’t be too bad)

LUNCH: Bring your own lunch.

WHY HAWKS?  For one, hawk migration can be quite the spectacle. But the other reason is that we’re just using hawks as an excuse for us to get out and about along the Texas coast and meet each other.

Please go to the link below to let us know if you are coming and if you need a ride.

Additional links

Smith Point Hawkwatch

Smith Point Blog

Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge