This is a beautiful scenic 5.8-mile route for taking in a bit of everything the Lakeway Canyonlands has to offer. You'll find a great variety of terrain and plenty of shade if you stick to the route. This is an amazingly well-designed trail system with a lot of heart and thought put into it. The Canyon Trail
section is probably the most fun section of the whole trip, with bridged creek crossings, nice trail details, and a great waterfall to see in wet months.
Once on the Canyonlands property itself, the Rim Trail
winds back and forth to take visitors to the spectacular overlooks and vistas of the canyon. Soon the Canyon Trail
descends into the lower elevations. In winter and spring when the ponds are full, migrating ducks can be seen stopping to rest.
The Rim Trail
and its grand vistas are easily navigated with minimal physical exertion. The Canyon Trail
requires greater effort as it is narrower and presents steeper inclines. However, this trail is well graded, marked and easily conquered. The Mt. Lakeway Trail will challenge even the most experienced hikers and riders, but the views are well worth the effort.
There are 5 trail segments that make up this route:
Mt Lakeway Trail
The main starting point for all the trails and hikes in this system is the trailhead of the Trophy Trail
, located on Trophy Drive just across from the Lakeway Swim Center.
There is a large trailhead billboard with a large trail systems map visibly obvious from the street. Take the Trophy Trail
starting point just to the right of the trailhead billboard where you'll see the "Friends of Lakeway" wooden sign hanging at the start. From that point on, all trail crossings/connects are clearly marked with trail sign posts. Just follow the route here on Hiking Project and enjoy.
The route is almost entirely ascending or descending with very few 'cruise' sections. About .4 miles before the summit of Mt. Lakeway, you'll see a small path off to the right which goes out to an overlook point. This is a great photo op...and a nice place to have lunch and take in the views of the Texas hill country and Lake Travis.
There is a bathroom with a free purified water dispenser just as you start the High Trail
After a fresh rain, you may want to wait to do this hike as the lower Canyon Trail
can get a little 'cakey' in sections...but still doable.
Plan on taking a couple hours or more the first time you take on the whole loop, and get to know its terrain before you go wild with it. Trekking poles are suggested. Wear appropriate hiking/trail-running shoes.