Don't know what part of Texas you're in, but there are three or four sections of federal land over in the Nacogdoches area. Regardless of what Texas thinks, they are not able to set laws on federal lands. Unless it is deemed a high-use area, federal lands are free to camp/hike on and have no anti-hammock laws. Big Bend might be the exception due to its relatively high usage. It is sad how few National Parks/Refuges/Wilderness areas Texas has compared to many other states. OTOH, there are some massive sections of private land to hike...if you have the right friends.
The bigger question is, do you really want to be out and about during hunting season? If so, stealth is most certainly not your best option!
Back in my ground dwelling days, I was camped with the family in a state park and took advantage of electricity with one bulb under the rainfly for night time dishwashing, card playing, etc. I felt like I was in a trailer ghetto.
A huge fifth wheel pulled into the site next to us, had to pull the site marker out to get it in. Came real close to our site, didn't think too much of it. They messed around with it a bit, then the slide outs started, sheesh, another 4 feet over into our site. Again, I let it go.
The Mrs. from said 5th wheeler came over to the electrical box, and exclaimed, "D***** it, no 220. I kinda chuckled walked up to the box which we shared with them. She then brought out her 110 cord and it would only fit where I was plugged in. She asked if she could switch, I responded with a cordial "sure." As she unplugged my little extension cord, I said , "D****it, now I am going to have to reset the microwave!!" She apologized profusely, and with as expressionless face as I could muster, I replied, "Just kidding."
I don't think she caught the sarcasm. We did not see the Mr. ever, they never came out of the unit at least from our observation for the next 2 days we were there. Haven't been to that park since. I now go to state land with my handy back country permit and avoid parks altogether.
“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.”
― Alan W. Watts
To the west there's Big Bend National Park and to the east there's the Sam Houston National Forest, Sabine NF, Davy Crocket NF, and Angelina NF however, as you note, do you really want to be out and about during hunting season?
The deer season issue that Sargevining mentioned that takes those great spots off trails in the national forest options we have off the table until February.
I worked for the state parks for a couple years. I have seen the hoards and masses that destroy the place. I grew up camping in state parks, sad I know, but that is what my parents liked. I agree with all of you though. I hate how people use state parks as an excuse to be "outside" and drink, be loud and obnoxious, and expect us paid park employees to clean up after them. People go there and let their kids run wild, which is great for the kids, up until the kids go through other peoples site, our even worse, run out in front of vehicles. I also agree that it's sad that people rely on power, technology, and other things just to enjoy their "camping" trip. Now I can't speak for all state parks, but I do know that the Washington parks are very nice, and very accommodating to LNT campers. At the same time, they are also tailored for tail gating camping. Which is sad. People should enjoy the outdoors without having to worry about having cell service or satellite reception.
You guys should see one of our city parks. There are about 300 sites! Make the mistake of being there on a 3-day weekend and it's crammed with people. I've never camped there and suspect I never will but I've seen setups that would blow your mind. I saw a RV once with a large screen (>40") tv under the awning, satellite dish on top, and enough lighting to require a small nuclear power plant. It's always nice to see people just getting away from it all.
I spent a weekend at Lake Ozark State Park in Missouri, a few weeks ago, doing a different kind of camping (RV) and in the same RV park area there were a total of 5 Hennessey Hammocks, at 2 different RV campsites. Right out in the open, no problems at all.-
"nature speaks in the silence between words"
Do not go through any gates without permission, watch for signs. If it is hunting season, I would not go into the woods (forest). Some people get totally tanked and shoot at ANYTHING.
Be very careful where you park your vehicle, it is likely to be vandalized, besure you have insurance to cover any losses. Do not leave anything of value in your vehicle.
As far as I know most BLM land is open to the public, read signs, look on the internet.
Try to stay out of "Party Camps", these are normally surrounded by litter, and several small fire rings. Party animals like to come from the city, to be wild and do things that would alert the police in a more populated area. It could become very dangerous quickly. Believe me I know.
We have given up on the Oregon State Parks. Like you found, too much litter, too many RV's, Campers. Too many people, kids, radios...
The BLM lands, utility company lands, are quieter, not as "developed", plus they are a little safer. I decided if people do not know we are camped some place they can not bother us. I always have a K9 with me for early warning, our dog is taught not to bark more than one bark, that one bark is an on comand bark.
Stay off others property unless you have their permission (you can ask for permission). Be aware of possible Flash Floods, always have an escape route. Camp on higher ground. Try to stay away from game trails. Be aware that water levels of rivers, streams and lakes can change very rapidly. Pick a spot off the trail.
You need to be careful about not getting into someone's growing operation, or a still, that tends to make the operator a little angry.
State parks and State/Federal Forests are very different. I enjoy both backcountry backpacking and hammocking, as well as RVing with the family. Across the country in each of state parks I've visited the sites are specifically designated, and you are required to camp only within the boundaries of the designated sites, which are generally cleared to allow for accommodation of the widest range of campers, trailers, motorhomes, etc. This of course makes hanging a hammock within the site difficult if you don't have a separate stand. The sites also tend to be close together to accommodate as many as possible.
When I'm RVing with the family in the fifthwheel, I take along a couple of hammocks and stands, though at some parks am able to find suitable trees. It's nice to be have all the conveniences of the RV, but the experience is much different than hammock camping. In fact, many of the RVers don't consider what they are doing "camping."
For hammocking I generally try to use state or federal land. It's more private, more natural and generally more enjoyable. The only time I really want to hammock next to an RV is if it's my own, then the walk to the cooler or bathroom is only a few feet.
The simplest and safest advice I can think of is to 1) never enter the woods without a map + compass and 2) don't go out alone. If you can't get someone to go with you, at least find a furry friend with four legs, a waggly tail, and teeth. They like hammocks too.