This tour highlights the unique places and spaces connected by the Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Trail. The crown jewel of Austin’s trail network, this 10.2-mile path forms a continuous loop around a six-mile stretch of Lady Bird Lake, attracting over four million visitors each year.
The Colorado River has played an integral role in Austin’s history. Power plants along the river fueled Austin’s development for most of the twentieth century, enabling its transformation from a sleepy, bohemian backwater to one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States. For years, the land now occupied by the trail was simply a treeless floodplain. The natural beauty you enjoy today is the result of hard work by countless Austinites who built miles of paths, planted thousands of trees, and oversee continuous efforts to improve the trail for future generations.
To begin the tour, head to the sidewalk on the east side of the Ann W. Richards Congress Avenue Bridge and walk to the center of the river’s crossing. After taking in the first four stops (all visible from the bridge), head to the trailhead at the southwest corner of Congress Avenue and Cesar Chavez Street and head west.
Special thanks to our community partner, The Trail Foundation, for their assistance in the production of this tour.
Image: Patrick Wong