Katie is our in-house trying-to-be-a-hiker who couldn’t help but post about her first love of a trail in Austin: Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Trail. Taking a walk around Lady Bird Lake will enhance your day no matter who you are or what you love. Here are Katie’s perspectives on one of Austin’s biggest drawing points.
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Before I moved to Austin, I had a pretty distinct feeling that this city truly cares about its outdoors. Taking pride in scenery and sustainability are crucial aspects of Austin and I’m thankful to be a part of it now. When I first arrived, I would walk around Lady Bird Lake with my afternoons, more often than not. The camaraderie of everyone enjoying their city and enjoying their run continues to make the Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Trail one of my favorites in town.
The great part is, Lady Bird herself has a quote about what this trail was meant for and how fit this city is that I found on a sign on said trail: “The general idea was that we wanted to have a succession of native, indigenous, hardy, blooming shrubs along the riverfront with a hike-and-bike trail and some picnic tables. What it is really used for now is running. This town is mad about running.” Austin is indeed mad about running.
There are plenty of entrances and lots of parking along this trail. There are also a plethora of options for actual loops you can make on this path. Try and conquer them all and it might take a few months. Weeks? It depends on how determined you are.
There are more views on this trail than you could possibly wish to see in one day. Try going on a run without headphones or other distractions to take in the beautiful place you get to call home!
There are three, five and seven mile loops that you can explore, but the trail is a total of 10 miles long. (There are a few links below that can give you more information about specific routes.)
On my walks around Lady Bird Lake, I consistently try to go on a different route each time. Trust the path and keep on walking! If it seems to be a little too much, you can always turn around and go back the way you came. The thing about these Adventures in Austin is that there are adventurous choices – make those choices! You’ll be thrilled that you did.
This trail may look secluded from the pictures shown above, but don’t be fooled, this path has more fellow Austinites than each of those buildings ^ combined. It’s a popular spot, so if you’re looking for a more secluded trail, check out these other posts: St. Edwards Park or my personal favorite, Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve.
- For a specific address, loop or directions, check out this link.
- Hours: 5 a.m. – Midnight
- Dogs OK, Bikes OK, Running and walking OK
- Cost: Free
- For more information, check out these two websites: The Trail Foundation and Austintexas.gov.