Texas’s largest river is the Río Grande, which flows southeastward for 2,100 km (1,300 mi) along the border between Texas and Mexico. The Río Grande carries little water during most of the year, but floods occur after periods of heavy rain.
The principal rivers that flow across the central part of the state from the Great Plains or Central Lowland to the Gulf of Mexico are the Colorado, Trinity, and Brazos rivers. The Colorado River is particularly important because it has been dammed to form several large artificial lakes. Two other large rivers are the Red River, which forms most of the boundary between Texas and Oklahoma, and the Sabine River, which marks part of the border between Texas and Louisiana. Shorter rivers that flow across the Gulf Coastal Plain include the Nueces, the San Antonio, the Guadalupe, the Lavaca, and the San Jacinto.
Most of the large lakes in Texas have been formed by dams. Among the largest natural lakes in the state is Caddo Lake, along the Louisiana border. Caddo Lake is not a single open body of water, but a winding network of channels and inlets. Large artificial lakes include Lake Texoma, on the Red River; Toledo Bend Reservoir, on the Sabine River; and Sam Rayburn Reservoir, on a tributary of the Neches River.
Texas has a coastline of 591 km (367 mi) along the Gulf of Mexico. However, long narrow islands called barrier islands extend along most of the coast; if the shoreline of all the islands and bays is taken into account, the coastline is 5,406 km (3,359 mi) long. Between most of the barrier islands and the mainland are shallow lagoons. The largest island along the coast is dune-filled Padre Island, most of which has been made a National Seashore. "Texas" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia
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