One of the great things about living in Central Texas is that we’re never too far away from nature’s influence.
My family and I live in Northwest Austin near Lake Travis which means easy access to abundant hills and wildlife. So during the recent holiday break we went for many relaxing walks with friends and family alike – each trip pushing deeper into the nearby woods surrounding our neighborhood near Canyon Creek.
What my adventures taught me is to make the most of Austin’s magnificent views; to experience the wind, water, woods and wildlife as close as possible, not just from afar.
I first encountered the neighborhood trails from Trailhead Park then learned the area was much more than “just a park” – the lands are near the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve which provides a protected habitat for endangered song birds and invertebrates found nowhere else on Earth. So aside from the obvious beauty there’s a magnificent significance to this area.
Below are a few pictures from one of the nearby trails that connects with Trailhead Park. Tip: Click the pics for bigger photos.
While you can discover the trails from the back of Trailhead Park proper, I entered from a less obvious trail during a short walk with my Labs. Off Boulder Lane you’ll see this sign (below). Dart behind it and you’ve just entered one of the trail’s hidden entrances. Hint: veer right.
I wasn’t sure if this wild mushroom was poisonous or not but it sure was cool to look at. “Keep It Weird,” little shroom!
This field of green sure is impressive! I’ve never seen so many wild cacti in one blink of the eye.
Kinda like the Tree of Souls from the movie “Avatar” this giant oak tree must be 150 or more years old. Look closely and you’ll see something I’ve never seen before – a cactus growing in a tree!
The Big Majestic Oak Tree Of Canyon Creek, as we called it, is as beautiful as it is big – I could hardly capture the entire tree in one picture so let’s have a look of the tree in this video.
Near the Big Oak Tree was this stream of clear water. The water made a peaceful sound. I’m glad my Labs didn’t jump in the water so I could capture the water in its native state. What’s really interesting is that the water was running over and through a big hole in the rock that you see here.
Back on the trail this canopy of cedar trees seems to stretch for miles.
At the top of a hill near Trailhead Park is this great canyon view.
As the sun begins to set we pop back onto Boulder Lane and back to “civilization.” Funny, I never look at the tree-covered hills the same way these days.
Whether you experience a hike, bike, run, walk or picnic always make sure to be careful when heading into the wild. Wear appropriate footwear for the rocky terrain, keep pets near (or at home) and your phone nearer, just in case. Have responsible fun, make a day of it, and “leave only footprints” as the saying goes!
~ Joe Paul Reider
Home Style Austin Founder
Keller Williams Realty, Inc.