List of geographical regions in Texas

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Texas is the second-largest state in the United States, with an area of 261,797 square miles (678,050 km2) and a population of 27.47 million in 254 counties. This covers an area 773 miles (1,244 km) wide by 790 miles (1,270 km) long. Due to its location and size, it is a part of a large number of unique geological regions, including the piney woods of East Texas, the plains in the Panhandle, the mountains in far West Texas, and hundreds of miles of coastline.

There are several different methods used to describe the geographic and geological differences within the state, and there are often subdivisions within a region which more accurately describe both the terrain and the culture. Because there is no single standard for subdividing the regions of Texas, many accepted areas either overlap or seem to contradict others. All are included for completeness.

Specific geographical regions[edit]

These are generally accepted regions; however, many overlap each other.

Texas is big. It's almost 800 miles from El Paso to Port Arthur and nearly 900 miles from Dalhart to Brownsville. Nevertheless, most attempts to define mutually exclusive regions emanate from the relatively clustered large urban areas in eastern Texas. A geographically more balanced perspective follows; it is from an article by Bob Beal that appeared in April 2015 in The Fort Stockton Pioneer, for which he is the former news editor.

The geography of the 269,000 square mile state of Texas is most easily described using a regional breakout such as (roughly from northwest to southeast):

  • Panhandle
  • West
  • West Central
  • Central
  • Urbia
  • East
  • South

Those individual regions are larger than many states. Adequately characterizing the regions themselves requires they be divided into subregions, the number of which depending on the size and complexity of the region. Further, two of the 17 subregions (shown below) each contain a far flung sub-subregion.

To bring this geographical abstraction into focus, it is useful to name localities representative of each subdivision. Herein, 52 localities are assigned to the 26 subdivisions. Thirty-one of those localities rate a city street map in the “Texas Atlas and Gazetteer.” The other 21 localities might best be called towns.

This analysis is presented in outline form below. In keeping with the listing of the regions, the subdivisions and localities are listed roughly from northwest to southeast. West Texas received a particularly detailed analysis because it is prone to misnomer.

Panhandle

Northern: Dalhart, Amarillo
Southern: Plainview, Lubbock

West

West Wingtip: Mentone, Van Horn
Far West: El Paso, Sierra Blanca
Central: (N) Kermit, Pecos, Fort Stockton and Monahans; (S) Fort Davis, Alpine, Marfa, Marathon, Presidio, Sanderson
Big Bend: Redford, Study Butte, Terlingua, Lajitas

West Central

Northern: Big Spring, Sweetwater
Mid: Midland, Odessa, San Angelo
Southern: Sonora, Del Rio

Central

Northern: Wichita Falls, Mineral Wells
Mid: Abilene, San Saba
Southern: Junction, Kerrville

Urbia

Northern: Fort Worth, Dallas
Mid: Waco, Killeen, College Station
Southern: Austin, San Antonio, Houston

East

Northern: Texarkana, Tyler
Southern: Beaumont, Port Arthur

South: Uvalde, Eagle Pass, Victoria

South Wingtip: Laredo, Corpus Christi
Rio Grande Valley: McAllen, Brownsville

As defined within Geography of Texas[edit]

  • Gulf Coastal Plains
  • North Central Plains
  • Great Plains
  • Mountains and Basins

Geographical regions that extend into Texas[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Art Leatherwood, "LLANO ESTACADO," Handbook of Texas Online [1], accessed May 02, 2012. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
  2. ^ E. H. Johnson, "SOUTH TEXAS PLAINS," Handbook of Texas Online [2], accessed May 03, 2012. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
  3. ^ Terry G. Jordan, "HILL COUNTRY," Handbook of Texas Online [3], accessed May 01, 2012. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

External links[edit]