As F. Scott Fitzgerald so aptly put it: “Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall”. This saying is especially true in Texas where the summer heat, at times, seems to go on forever. Autumn in Austin is full of new beginnings as beautiful maple, oak, cedar, and cypress trees transform from green to rustic tones. These colors transform the landscape of Central Texas and become a sight to behold all their own. Here is a list of a variety of places near Lago Vista, Texas to view fall foliage.
Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge
Whether you’re looking for an easy walk or a more challenging hike, Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge is the perfect place to view stunning fall foliage. The refuge has nearly 10 miles of trails to stroll through, as well as plenty of lookout points along the way to take photos of the orange, red, and yellow sprinkled landscape. Alongside the majestic fall foliage, you can enjoy creeks, oak forests, and up to 245 species of birds in the area.
Hamilton Pool Preserve
For people who love being by water whatever time of the year, Hamilton Pool Preserve is a stunning canyon, complete with a waterfall and sheltered walkways. In the fall, the green water glistens against the earthy colors of the bed of leaves dotted around the Preserve, creating a truly magical natural spectacle. Visitors can soak in the crisp setting while keeping an eye out for the golden-cheeked warblers that flit about.
Pedernales State Park
As the Pedernales River cascades over jutting limestone it becomes Pedernales Falls, dropping a total of 50 feet. Come fall, the trails that line the water get a generous sprinkling of foliage from the cypress, buttonbush, and ash trees. And if you prefer a denser helping of foliage, you can head into the nearby wooded areas, where pecan, sycamore, and walnut trees cover the skyline and create a carpet of leaves at your feet.
Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve
This gorgeous 277-acre preserve is a haven for foliage fanatics. Sitting just between the Texas prairies and Hill Country, Wild Basin Wilderness is home to a range of trails that wind past falls, dense forests, rolling hills, and a host of roaming wildlife. Wild Basin also has lots of bridge crossings that make a particularly Instagrammable picture in the fall – no filter needed! The preserve is free to enter and you don’t need to reserve in advance on weekdays.
Brushy Creek Lake Park
Brushy Creek Lake Park is a little slice of paradise filled with twisting pathways that curve through fields, over lakes, and all the way towards the soft red skies in fall. The park spans 90 acres and visitors can wander through the thick foliage in the Autumn months or take in the views from the lake on the pedal boats. There are additional bike trails if you like to see your foliage from two wheels.
Emma Long Metropolitan Park
Located along Lake Austin, Emma Long Metropolitan Park has the special combination of sandy shores and rich greenery. Between the months of September to December, when the trees shed, the pathways are illuminated with different shades of brown that contrast beautifully with the blue water. Picnic tables are available throughout the park too, so you can sit and sip a hot drink while watching the autumnal scenes unfold.
Inks Lake is actually a reservoir surrounded by rugged rocks, towering trees, and the faint hum of wildlife. This spot is popular for water sports in the summer, but when fall hits, it transforms into a still, tranquil space where the breeze whistles atop the water and the red tinge of the rocks accentuates the oranges and yellows of fallen foliage.
Pace Bend Park
There’s arguably no better spot to watch a fall sunset than at Pace Bend Park. Time your visit as the sun goes down and casts its soft rays across Lake Travis and the wide open stretches of foliage-topped grasslands. Wildlife such as foxes and whitetail deer also hop about the park, adding an extra layer of bucolic vibes to the environment. There’s the option to stay overnight in Pace Bend Park in the campsites, which are complete with electric plugs and showers.
McKinney Falls State Park
Another Texas gem boasting rushing waterfalls that spill out onto lush forests, McKinney Falls State Park has some of the most vivid colors in fall. The trees against the golden rocks become a sharp red and are striking in front of the cloudy skies. If you’re a photographer, you’ll be spoiled for snaps – white-tailed deers, armadillos, and bright wildflowers are in abundance here. Be sure to see “Old Baldy” too, it’s one of the oldest bald cypress trees on public land in Texas.
Learn More About Living Lakeside
Surround yourself with the best fall foliage Texas has to offer when you move to the master-planned community at Lakeside at Tessera. Learn more about our custom waterfront homes or call today for a tour!