Return to Barton Creek - Upper North

Hard at first
User: aggiehiker - 1/15/2007  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 4stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 4.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Wow, that first quarter mile is a killer, especially if you turn around and have to finish up with that hill again. It was fun, but a lot of inconsiderate bikers (my gf got hit by one of them).
Best when there has been rain
User: reynoldser - 7/12/2006  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 6.00 Miles Duration: N/A

Great places to stop and take a dip when there has been rain.

Great Solitude
User: big tex - 5/30/2006  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
I really enjoyed this hike because it seems everyone goes to the part of the trail by Zilker and ignores this section. I love that you can hike on side of the creek down the the other side back. There are also some nice little springs coming out of the cliffs on the side of the creek. Great swimming too. The hill going into and out of the valley is an intense thing if you are tired so save your energy for the hike out.
Great Outing
User: Rajun Cajun - 4/2/2006  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 12.00 Miles Duration: N/A
This was my first long trail in Austin. It was so nice to be in town and enjoy so mych wilderness. Hiked from the neighborhood entrance to Zilker and back. What was so great is that you could hike to Zilker on one side and hike back on the other.
Watch out for bikes and nosey dogs
User: Soonhorn - 12/17/2005  [View Log Page]
Rating: 1star Difficulty: 1star Solitude: halfstar
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
There are far better places to hike around this town. The people are friendly but the number of bikers(going way too fast) and the wandering dogs...just not our thing. Pretty trail but we have much more to offer around Austin. It would help if the water was running, but then we would have even more bikes and dogs. The trail is such that you usually dont have long views in front or behind makes you pretty nervouse when a bike comes up on you, on a 10 inch wide trail, traveling as fast as the guy can go...Cudos to thier skill and courteousness. Unless you live a mile away, find a better hike or get a dog and a bike.
User: brian724 - 6/11/2004  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 6.70 Miles Duration: N/A
User: Shylock and Fiona - 5/9/2004  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 1point5stars
Distance: 6.70 Miles Duration: N/A
One of the best in Austin
User: figment - 12/7/2003  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 5stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 4.00 Miles Duration: N/A
This hike down the Hill of Life to Barton Creek and down to Twin Falls is one of the best in Austin. Share the trail with bikers and dog-walkers, but dogs should be kept on leash here. Go swimming in Twin Falls, Sculpture Falls, or any inviting looking swimming hole. Watch out for underage kids who haul down cases of cheap beer to drink at the falls, they can get obnoxious. This is best a few days after rain, or in spring or fall, when water is running in the creek all the way to Twin Falls. Sometimes, the water will disappear beneath the surface between Scultpure and Twin Falls, when can be somewhat disconcerting.
Nice scenery.
User: Centex Trekker - 10/22/2003  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
The creek was bone dry.
Very nice hike
User: HikerGirl - 7/6/2003  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 2.00 Miles Duration: N/A
The walk down was a good warm up (was wondering if it was ever going to end!) and then I started hearing the people swimming, so I knew I was close. Saw the Scottish Falls (wish I brought my camera w/ the zoom lens...would have been a great picture) which were really pretty. Found the next falls and sat under a tree on a rock right by the water and watched the fish swim by as I just relaxed on this beatiful day looking around at the cliffs & trees. After the little rest, I headed on down the trail. Met up with several bikers which were all very courteous & friendly as they whizzed by. Passed some hikers, too, that were too busy walking to say hi when I passed by...oh well. Went all the way to Sculpture Falls and wished I had taken my swimsuit because the water looked so refreshing & everyone in it looked like they were having fun! I turned around at this point to head back because I just planned on seeing what the trail was like to see if I needed to bring my camera next time (which I most definitely will). As I was half way back (but not yet to the hill climb) it started to drizzle which was just wonderful seeing as how I was hot and upset because I didn't take a swimsuit! Walked all the way up to the top in the heavy drizzle realizing what a great day & hike this was.

* IMPORTANT - READ THIS IF YOU DON'T READ THE OTHER PART: As I got to the gate I noticed a girl holding two dogs and a highly upset feline in the front lawn of one of the houses directly in front of the gate. I helped the girl hold the dogs and found out that one of their other dogs had just attacked the cat...which explained all the hair in the front yard of the house. Through a chain of events, we found out that the cat belonged to the next door neighbor who came over to retrieve the cat after I helped him inspect it for injuries (there were none except for some bald spots). Well, needless to say he gave the girls a tongue lashing about letting their dogs run off their leashes in a area specifically marked for leashes and the girls repeatedly apologized to no avail. But he should have also remembered that cats do not have Free Reign Zone. Anyway, the point of this is to remind other hikers who have dogs to leash your dogs before you exit the park so an incident like this doesn't happen again. Put yourself in the other pet owners shoes and think how you would feel if your animal was attacked by a free roaming dog in a clearly marked area where leashes are required. When I was leaving, he was threatening Small Claims Court or something like that. So mind your pooches or better yet, make them mind you! Other than was a great day!

great in-town hike
User: Laurie Najjar - 6/29/2003  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 7.50 Miles Duration: N/A
My husband and I tackled the entire length of the trail, which took about 3 hours. Be sure to stop at the Sculpture Falls for a cool dip in the creek. Another nice feature: nearly the entire trail is shaded. A challenging climb up through rocky terrain at the end gives you your money's worth! We found the trail very busy on the Sunday morning that we went. Not many hikers, but tons of bikers. They weren't rude, but because the trail is narrow, hikers were forced to stop and wait by the side of the trail for the bikers each time they passed. Also, lots of dogs (not a problem) and lots of dog poop (a problem). All in all, an interesting, fairly challenging hike -- and a great find so close-in to town.
I Can't Believe It's So Close To The Mall!
User: AustinHiker - 4/21/2003  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 3point5stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 2.40 Miles Duration: N/A
This was a great hike that until Saturday seemed too close to home, and too close to a major mall and highways, that I almost crossed it off the list. But my 4.5-year-old son and I had only 2 hours to go for a hike before lunch, so I decided to give it a shot and lowered my expectations accordingly, expecting to not quite get away from the neighborhoods and malls that surround it. The first 6/10 mile is not terribly steep, but steep enough that I had to hold my son's hand. FYI, once you get to the bottom of the hill the signs direct you to the left (south) but if you turn right instead onto a smaller footpath and follow Barton Creek, you will eventually come to another waterfall that is large and loud, and so far as I know, is unnamed. (We didn't go there on this particular hike, but go there fairly often from my back yard in the Lost Creek neighborhood). There were quite a few people on bikes and walking dogs but it was surprisingly quiet and uncongested for being in the middle of an urban area. I forgot that the highway was so close by and really could not hear it at all at creek level. Also, once past the first 6/10 mile, we could no longer see houses or other evidence of development (aside of course from the bathrooms and signs along the broad, well-worn trail). So you won't really forget where you are, but it is a surprisingly quiet and lush setting for its location. There are many little side trails carved out that will be fun to explore once some other time. My son really enjoyed the map we downloaded from this site. I put it in a sandwich bag and he "navigated" us to Slanted Falls, by which time we had to turn around to make it home for lunch. But he's clearly disappointed that we weren't able to see Sculpture Falls after Dad hyped it up so much, so we're definitely out to hit this trail again soon.
The Downhill walk was almost freefall
User: adonaione - 12/30/2002  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 1.50 Miles Duration: N/A
Excellent scenery with the one fall I saw. Met Moms with backpack babies going down the first slope. Loved the stretch.