Emerald Lake Park is a hidden gem nestled between two larger parks in southwest Dallas: 950-acre Mountain Creek Lake Park to the north and 1800-acre Cedar Hill State Park to the south. Even though its relatively small size might make it feel like your and your dog's little secret, it's still a large park at over 60 acres. Careful landscaping gives Emerald Lake Park a unique flair, and there's a lot of ground to cover to see all of the scenery.
Emerald Lake Park has some simple facilities including a playground, a volleyball court, and a basketball court, but its biggest draw is its walkability. As you wind your way along the park's paved trail, you'll enjoy a variety of landscapes. Wooded areas shelter wildlife, though the widest array of species congregate around the lake. You could see cricket frogs, common sliders, prairie lizards, beavers, kingfishers, little blue herons, and ring-necked ducks as you and your pup pad around the nine-acre lake. Stray cacti growing among the trees lend the scene a unique Texas charm. You might also spot local anglers hoping to catch bass and bluegill. As you continue, you'll emerge into tucked-away places shaded by willows where you can stop and take in the peacefulness of it all.
To the south, the Emerald Lake Park Neighborhood Trail ends at the Mountain Creek Branch Library. Dogs aren't allowed in, but if you've brought another human buddy along, one of you could watch your pup while the other goes in to check out some books. The benches by Emerald Lake are the perfect spot to read as the dragonflies dart by. Give your good dog some pets as they show you how well they can sit and stay, but be prepared for your curious canine to want to eventually take off again after a new scent. Remember to clean up after them using the park's trash cans. You'll need to bring your own water and waste bags.
If you're looking for a quiet day by the lake with your best friend, there's no better place to stop than Emerald Lake Park.