For the past decade, geologists at the Bureau of Economic Geology, The University of Texas at Austin, have prepared many kinds of maps of the Texas Coastal Zone. The Environmental Geologic Atlas of the Texas Coastal Zone, a seven-volume series, includes environmental geologic maps as well as other maps depicting special features of the region such as land use, mineral and energy resources, and natural processes. A special atlas, Natural Hazards of the Texas Coastal Zone, illustrates the occurrence and significance of such hazards as hurricane tidal flooding, coastal erosion, and land subsidence. Another atlas, Sediment Distribution, Bathymetry, Faults, and Salt Diapirs on the Submerged Lands of Texas, presents a view of Texas lands beneath bays, lagoons, and the inner continental shelf. These and other published maps of the Texas Coastal Zone provide a comprehensive picture of the natural environments and man made features of this remarkable coastal region.
More and more Texans and out-of-state visitors are becoming interested in the Coastal Zone and its recreational attributes, economic potential, and environmental sensitivity. Consequently, our coastal geologists have prepared a nontechnical guide to a fascinating part of our Coastal Zone Padre Island National Seashore. We hope that this guidebook and map will acquaint the casual seashore visitor with our most primitive Texas barrier island. For more serious amateur naturalists, the guidebook and map provide an introduction to the many natural environments and active processes that compose this South Texas barrier island.
The guidebook is designed to complement the accompanying multicolored map of the natural and man-made features of the island. A wealth of information has been summarized in the guidebook and keyed to the map using a coordinate location system. Similarly, many ground-level and aerial photographs and sketches explain the past history and current character of Padre Island.
We hope that the guide to Padre Island will make your visit more enjoyable. Perhaps your visit will give you a fuller appreciation of the island's natural setting and its sensitivity to natural processes and man's modification.
L. F. Brown, Jr. Associate Director
Last Updated: 28-Mar-2007