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Texas Parks and Wildlife will offer new way to reserve your spot at all state parks

Early next year, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department will be launching a new online reservation system that gives visitors the option to sign up for a spot at all parks in advance.

We all love a good hike in one of Texas' many state parks. But what happens if you drive all that way, and the parking is full?

Recently, that's been happening more and more to people in the Austin area, who are then forced to make the decision to leave the park.

“I’ve definitely been turned away. You get there on a weekend, you get there late – you get turned away," Austin resident William Kanofla said.

Now, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is trying to change that.

Early next year, they'll be launching a new online reservation system that gives visitors the option to sign up for a spot at all parks in advance.

The system allows you to pick your site, sign up for a specific day or weekend to ensure your access to a park and then buy a parking pass.

You can already do this at some of the state parks, but in 2019, it will go into effect for all of them throughout the state of Texas.

The goal is to allow visitors to skip walking into a building on-site and then deciding where to park, how much everything costs and how long you can be there.

Stephanie Garcia, a spokesperson with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, said they're excited to launch this new way of reserving spots.

“Definitely, we have seen an increase at our parks," Garcia said. "People will be able to enjoy the park and not have to worry about if, 'Will I get in or will I not get in?'"

Kanofla agrees, saying he thinks it'll make the process easier.

“Honestly, I think it’s a good idea," Kanofla said. "Put your information in and show up, you’re good to go."

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story originally stated that visitors will be required to make a reservation at all state parks. Visitors will have the option to make reservations at all state parks.