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Barton Creek Greenbelt, Austin

#2 of 6 in Trails in Austin
Biking Trail · Hidden Gem · Hiking Trail
The Barton Creek Greenbelt located in Austin, Texas is managed by the City of Austin's Park and Recreation Department. The Greenbelt is a 7.25mi stretch of public land that begins at Zilker Park and stretches South/Southwest to the final section commonly referred to as "The Hill of Life" which ends in the Woods of Westlake subdivision. The Barton Creek Greenbelt consists of three areas: the Lower Greenbelt, the Upper Greenbelt and the Barton Creek Wilderness Park and is characterized by large limestone cliffs, dense foliage, and shallow bodies of water.
Located in Austin, Texas, the Barton Creek Greenbelt has a humid subtropical climate characterized by hot summers and mild winters. The Greenbelt receives of rain, with the majority of the precipitation coming in the spring, and second-highest in the fall.3 Small bodies of water can be found at all times of the year throughout the Greenbelt, however the creek bed that runs along the spine of the Greenbelt actively flows only 1 to 2 months out of the year depending on precipitation levels. Watershed from Barton Creek, a tributary that feeds the Colorado River in Central Texas, is responsible for the area's highly concentrated vegetation.
With its diverse terrain, the Greenbelt is a popular location for adventure-loving locals. The large limestone cliffs that line portions of the Greenbelt make for excellent rock climbing. Hikers and bikers can be found year round, although during the wet season mountain biking is more challenging as the biking trails crisscross the creek bed, making it difficult to cross when it is full. During years of heavy rainfall the water level of the creek rises high enough to allow swimming, cliff diving, kayaking, and tubing (recreation). During the annual "Tubin the Belt" parade hundreds of individuals tube the greenbelt on a Saturday in Spring.
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Barton Creek Greenbelt reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
235 reviews
  • This is a definite asset in Austin, but we were confused by the different accounts of how to find the trail heads and where to park. Once on the trail, it was quite lovely.  more »
  • If you need a little bit of nature in your day, and want some solitude amongst busy Austin, this is a great place to walking or hiking. You can go for a long or short walk, either way you'll be...  more »
  • This is a pleasant green space with good trails. Be aware that it gets very crowded on weekends and that the parking is limited.  more »
  • Such a beautiful hike, always love going out and exploring the paths! After it rains, always nice flowing streams and wonderful swimming spots! Lots of people always around having a good time and relaxing. Very well kept pathways and pet and kid friendly. Not a hard hike by any means, just a slight incline or decline depending on direction you go. Water is consistently around the 60s in the springs and feels great to take a dip in the summer!
  • Just across the Colorado, this is a great hike. And not just a stroll on pavement like other "hikes" in Texas, you'll be watching your feet as you walk through rocky areas. It's also rather exceptionally quiet (during the week, at least; it's well traveled on weekends).
  • The greenbelt is incredible and it's an activity that is different each time. You can go for an easy or medium hike, go swimming, mountain biking, rock climbing, the list keeps going! There are so many entrance points and often lead to a very nice swimming hole. In peak summer time, July and August, often the water has dried up so this isn't the best time to go. After the rains in the fall, September, October, November, or early spring, March, April, May are the best times for swimming. Would recommend packing up some snacks and drinks and making a day of it!
  • Great place to hike or to just walk. Calm and lot of greenery all around. Stream was completely dry, no water at all. Went with dog and guess she had a great time too.
  • This area is a pretty awesome area of Austin. Hiked down the trail and did our first YouTube video here. Great scenery and did a little rock climbing to get up into this cave area. Great people to meet here as well. Lots of original Austin people come here to chill smoke and have a beer with. They have some great stories to tell over here. Bring your dogs as well because there were tons when I was here. Would highly recommend checking out if you have hiked here.

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