If you are looking for a quiet place to dip your toes in the river, cast a line, or picnic while bird-watching, then James Kiehl River Bend Park in Comfort, Texas is the perfect spot.
The Park is on the smaller size with 25 acres and a decent sized dirt parking lot. Don’t be fooled as you’re heading to the park: you’ll drive on backroads, under an old railroad bridge, and basically through single-family farms before finding the park.
Finding the path
At the same elevation at the parking lot you will find a path that leads to a picnic area and the restrooms, a port a potty with some hand sanitizing stations. Here you will find some paths through the meadow that lead to bird houses and a bird blind. You can continue this path down the river where you will find beautiful cypress trees lining the blue waters. You can continue to walk along the river or take a path back through the lower meadow. The last time few times we visited, the paths through the lower field were not as well-maintained, so we chose to head back on the same path back up the upper meadow.
From the parking lot you can head right to the river down a newly rocked path that is much less steep than the old washed out dirt one. This will take you down to the old road and bridge as well as the rocky beach. You can bring some camp chairs and spend some time down here. We have stumbled upon a few families picnicking and swimming in this spot.
You can fish from the old road bridge or try your luck downstream. If looking for fossils is your thing, then just move around some of the river rocks at the edge and you will find some neat treasures.
Army Spc. James Kiehl, fallen hero, and the park named after him
James Kiehl River Bend park is about a 10-minute drive east from downtown Comfort. You can continue your drive after visiting the park to the Old Tunnel State Park to see some bats or even further to Bankersmith, TX. When you visit the park, take a moment to read about James Kiehl and his ultimate sacrifice.