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Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort

Reconnecting with my family at Deer Lake

By Guest Writer: Cynthia J. Drake

Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort

Guide to Your Weekend Dallas Getaway in East Texas

By Guest Writer: Cynthia J. Drake

Weddings at Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort

8 Reasons Why Brides & Grooms Love This Texas Destination Wedding Getaway

By Guest Writer: Cynthia J. Drake

Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort, Where Social Distancing Happens.... Naturally

Guide to Your Weekend Dallas Getaway in East Texas

By Guest Writer: Cynthia J. Drake

With the urban grind of life in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex showing no signs of slowing down, many folks are looking for weekend getaways from Dallas to get away from it all.

Outdoor lovers in search of fresh air, lakes, and mature pine forests will find a lovely retreat just a short drive from the DFW area, with a home base at Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort in Mount Vernon, nestled in the East Texas piney woods region.

Whether you have a family with young children or are looking to get away with a group of your friends or your sweetheart, we’ve put together a weekend DFW staycation getaway itinerary that can be easily customized for maximum relaxation or fun, depending on your tastes.

Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort

Day 1

Check in to Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort in Mount Vernon, Texas. Located two hours east of Dallas on I-30, this unique ranch resort has plenty to offer for people wanting to get away from it all, disconnect from their screens, and reconnect with loved ones.

Spend your first day settling in to your spacious accommodations and soaking in the fresh pine air of this East Texas gem. You may wish to rent a UTV (utility terrain vehicle) — ideal for zipping around the resort’s 850 acres of land, where you’re more than likely to spot a herd of deer grazing in the hay meadow morning or evening. Buddy up to the resident dogs, and you’ll have new furry friends for life (the resort is also very dog-friendly if you want to bring your own pups).

Enjoy an invigorating hike through the privately owned pine forests and feed some snacks to the goats at the on-site petting zoo. Or go for a paddleboat, stand-up paddle board, or bike ride — the equipment is all free for guest use while staying at the resort. Be sure to make plenty of time to kick up your feet near the sparkling Deer Lake or Dream Lake — many of the cabins feature their own private docks overlooking these lakes.

Insiders’ tip: Because each cabin at Deer Lake comes equipped with a full kitchen (as well as laundry facilities), be sure to stock up on groceries on your way in at Brookshire’s, 306 TX-37 S, Mt. Vernon — don’t forget marshmallows, chocolate bars, and graham crackers for your evening s’mores prepared over your own private campfire!

Day 2

Make reservations to enjoy one of the Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort’s many on-site activity offerings. Whether you enjoy horseback riding, a guided fishing trip, an escape room challenge, or a hayride, plan to spend the day exploring and relaxing outdoors at Deer Lake.

A 15-minute drive to downtown Mount Vernon is a great place to grab a cup of local coffee at Watermelon Mills Coffeehouse, 103 N. Kaufman St., Mt. Vernon, (try the lavender latte) and explore the historic town square and Franklin County Courthouse, established in 1912. 

The charming downtown is filled with restaurants and shops, artist galleries and museums, ideal for an hour or two of exploring. Check the community calendar in advance of your visit if you’d like to catch one of the many local events throughout the year: farmers’ markets, local rodeos, a county fair, and holiday festivities.

Weddings at Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort

Fun fact: Franklin County, Texas, is just one county away from Oklahoma and three counties away from Arkansas.

Insiders’ tip: If you don’t feel like cooking or grilling dinner tonight, order up a delicious pizza from a local favorite: Parker’s Pizza, 6771 FM115 in Scroggins.

Though not far from the bustling Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area, Deer Lake feels like a totally different world. Offering 850 acres of land filled with pine forests, two private lakes (Deer Lake and Dream Lake) and secluded cabins by the lake, wedding couples that are looking for a natural backdrop for their ceremony will find it here. Wedding and reception-ready facilities include a large outdoor pavilion with a nearby rock patio, an outdoor fireplace, and a romantic gazebo.

Day 3

Start your day with a hot mug of coffee while watching the sunrise over Deer Lake (it’s worth getting up early). Plan the rest of your day’s activities around catching up on whatever you missed on the prior days, or doing repeats of favorite activities at the resort. For kids, there are two big playgrounds at Deer Lake to enjoy, including a slackline, as well as plenty of picnic spots to get energy out before hitting the road again.

Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort

If you feel like exploring more of East Texas on your way out of town, take a 30-minute drive west to Sulphur Springs. There are two major lakes located in this area: Cooper Lake and Lake Fork, the latter known throughout the world for its legendary bass fishing.

Insiders’ tip: In downtown Sulphur Springs, visit Celebration Plaza, recently revitalized with a Texas star-shaped interactive splash fountain and unique public restrooms, which are allegedly the only “see-through” public restrooms in the U.S. (they have one-way mirrors to maintain privacy). 

For your final step, you’ll want to book your next visit at Deer Lake Cabins Ranch Resort — because you’ll want to return for your next Dallas getaway soon.