Return to Buescher State Park

nice trail
User: jimmy peace - 6/23/2019  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 2point5stars Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 3.80 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 30 minutes

hiked from the big elm   to the park road, 

Good trail for observing plants and animals
User: heatharcadia - 1/21/2017  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 3point5stars Solitude: 3point5stars
Distance: 4.71 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 23 minutes

Most of the trails at this park are closed due to the fires, but the blue trail is still open and it makes the trip from Austin worth it. Most of the trail is shaded. You'll see a ton of plant and animal life (I saw many lizards and toads among fallen leaves) and it smells really nice.

There are a few times the trail crosses a small creek. Be aware of this: You'll get a little muddy and perhaps wet depending on how much the creek is flowing and how good (or not good) you are and leaping from shallow are to shallow area.

The short CCC Crossover Trail is also open. It's a super quick hike, but still interesting. The stonework is fun to look at, especially since portions of it have been overgrown with moss and lichen. 

The park is rather quiet. I know there were a lot of people there while I was, but I didn't see many others. (Perhaps they were all near the camping areas.)

At the end of the blue trail there is a scenic overlook, which is a nice place to watch the sun set. You can also get to this area by driving on the main park road.

Main Trail partially open - a good walk with interesting plants
User: plectrudis - 1/2/2017  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3point5stars Difficulty: 1point5stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 3.00 Miles Duration: N/A

The first 2 miles of the Main Trail are now open, which means you can have a 4-mile hike, which is definitely long enough to make the trip worthwhile. Buescher offers a much lusher, greener experience than most Austin-area hikes, winding through the Lost Pines and following a small creek.  There were lots of lichens, mushrooms, true moss, and Spanish moss, as well as a number of grasses, cedars, and lots of yaupon.  And, of course, loblollies.  We didn't notice any fire damage, but we weren't really looking for it, either, and we were there late in the day and didn't explore the park beyond the one trail that's open.

The stretch we walked didn't have a lot of elevation changes (which was fine with us) and no dramatic overlooks, but was a pleasant, intimate walk with only a few other folks on the trail.

fires have done their damage
User: jimmy peace - 7/17/2016  [View Log Page]
Rating: 2point5stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 1.90 Miles Duration: N/A

sadly only the small trail near the lake is open, the rest are closed due to the fires, it will be a generation before it all comes back,   did go see the big elm tree tho

User: crocodile235 - 4/21/2015  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 2.90 Miles Duration: N/A

At the recommendation of a ranger, I hiked a portion of the Pine Gulch loop and skipped the Woodlands trail.  The Pine Gulch loop has a couple of optional cutoffs, which helps you set your chosen distance - perfect for me that day since I had somewhere to be.  I took the Roosevelt's Cutoff.  I'll be back soon to hike the whole thing.  This is a very pretty trail thanks to the great pine trees.  You're hiking on a carpet of pine needles and smelling the intoxicating scent of pines along your entire hike.  The Bastrop fires didn't affect the pines in this area, so you can almost forget that ever happened.  :(

Very nice hike
User: aquadoggie - 11/2/2014  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 7.33 Miles Duration: N/A

Buescher State Park is only about 30 minutes away from Austin and I had pretty much forgotten about it, despite the fact that I have passed the entrance tons of times on the way out to my parent's cabin near Winchester.  With Court out of town in Dallas for her final review before her licensing exam, I decided to get out in the woods for the morning.  Daylight savings hit the night before so with an extra hour, I actually woke up at 6:30 in the morning and got a decently early start.  I got to the trail head by about 8:30.  It was still in the upper 50s and I had to wear my jacket for the first couple of miles.

I don't think the rest of my blog (pics and whatnot) will convert here, so here's the link.  Not for traffic, just because I'm lazy. :)

Nice quiet hike in the Lost Pines
User: rodavenport - 7/4/2014  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 9.40 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 45 minutes

Nice trail, its not real strenuous but its nice and shady for a mid summer hike. My mileage was higher than the offical trail map because I did some doubling back here and there. I was really surprised at the low number of people hiking on the trails and the low volume of people in the park.

Nice improvements to the trail!
User: BANDA - 12/17/2013  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 8.25 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 30 minutes

I went out to ride my mountain bike on the trails today (yes, the park allows biking as well as hiking on the trails now.) and to find some geocaches. It was a beautiful Fall day and I really enjoyed the trails. They finally moved the portion of the trail that used to be on the pipeline ROW! It is now much more scenic and interesting. They also added a new route to part of the Pine Gulch loop. Be sure to pick up a copy of the excellent new trail map from headquarters. Granted it was a weekday, but the whole trail was very quiet and I only passed 3 other people!

Big Lollipop
User: Lone_Star - 4/28/2013  [View Log Page]
Rating: 1point5stars Difficulty: 1point5stars Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 6.80 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 12 minutes

After the 2nd day group hike of McKinney Roughs, there was still a lot of daylight left so I decided to head over to Buescher State Park and hike the trail there solo.

The trail system is a 7.7 mile lollipop-shaped trail. The trailhead is well marked and there are a number of direction signs along the trail.  The main trail (blue trail) is the "stick" of the lollipop and the Pine Gulch Loop (red trail) forms the "lollipop", although there is a CCC Crossover Trail (yellow trail) that is a cutoff trail you can take if you want to hike a shorter loop.

My plan was to hike the blue and red trails.  Everything went according to plan, except on the way back in I inadvertently took a wrong turn onto an unmarked trail.  I was hiking briskly and didn't refer to the paper trailmap provided to me at the Park HQs, so I didn't realize I was off course until the unmarked trail dumped me out at a scenic overlook off Park Road 1C.  At that point, I looked at my GPS and noticed I was parallel to the blue trail so I hiked down Park Road 1C until I came to the Gas Line utility right of way clearing.  I took a left down the clearing until I was able to find another undocumented trail that led me back to the blue trail.  The end result of straying off course was I hiked a larger "lollipop" and almost a mile less distance. :(

Overall, the trail is nice.  There is a small pond along the red trail and it takes you through a nice wooded pine forest, but otherwise there isn't too much to see.  It is a nice escape for a few hours, though, and a did see a couple of white tail deer.

Budding Plants
User: Rosalind Franklin - 3/10/2013  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
I usually like this hike in the summer because t is so shady and relatively cool under the pines, but a friend needed to identify invasive species for her professor so I tagged along. The drought has done some real damage out here to the oaks and the pines; lots of downed wood everywhere.
Great hike and I loved the smell of all the pine trees.
User: alscrbr - 5/20/2012  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4point5stars Difficulty: 4stars Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
It was a great hike in the middle of the day, the only problem was the road was a little close to certain parts of the trail.
Great hike
User: ckf - 9/24/2011  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4point5stars Difficulty: 3point5stars Solitude: 2point5stars
Distance: 4.00 Miles Duration: N/A

I hiked and geocached the Pine Gulch Loop.  It was a nice hike.  A lot of pines are dead and dying along the trail, many already cut up.  Came across a number of people hiking and running on the trail.  I would have uploaded my track but apparently it's too big for this site's requirements.

Beautiful Hike in the Pines
User: a0628h0427 - 5/8/2010  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3point5stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A

This hike was surprisingly hot in early May. The noisy plant near halfway was a surprise, but solitude was unsurpassed. We did not see anyone else for the entire 7 miles of the hike.

great hike
User: stefminus - 4/7/2010  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 7.70 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 15 minutes

i just did this whole thing on sunday evening (4/4/07) and it was a pleasant surprise. i wish i had a map of it beforehand as that would have been a great help. now that i have seen it, i finally understand how i crossed the road 3 times (i don't count the first crossing on the map because it crosses at an intersection near the cancer research facility). the part at the beginning with the pipelines is now completely covered in grass with a trail eroded down into it. there's a ton of crashed trees along the trail, some of which are really big. the whole thing is pretty easy on your feet until the middle part where it starts circling around. at that point there's a lot of downhill stuff that can be kinda rough on your ankles if you're not careful. at this point i saw a gigantic buck off in the trees but he took off before i could snap a photo. i saw a few cardinals and a rabbit, and heard some frogs cry out as i approached them, but that was about it for wildlife. not knowing the trail map, i was getting worried until i got back to the part where you start retracing your steps on the trail. it was getting dark and i had a 13yr old aussie shepherd with me who was starting to quit on me. i had to do the pipeline stretch and the last part that leads back to the park in the total dark since i thought i would get back before dark. luckily that part of the trail is wide and pretty obvious where you're supposed to go. i recommend this thing if you want a fairly easy - but long - walk in the woods by yourself (or with immediate company). i didn't see anyone else on a nice sunday evening.

Cedar Tree Houes Hike, With my Sisters
User: Miles - 2/28/2009  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 4stars Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 6.50 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 30 minutes

We went out to find a couple of caches. Eight of us started the hike. Only three of us made it all the way. Sun shine, but cold and windy. Got back to the cabin. to find a wild fire had started. Had to evacuate the cabin about 1:30 in the afternoon. We'll be back for a full weekend of fun and adventure!

Nice and Shady!!
User: pongob - 9/21/2008  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 7.70 Miles Duration: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Went on this hike with my husband on a very warm September day.  We're slow hikers, more like strollers really and stopped several times just to take in the sights and sounds of the woods.  Very nice.  We saw 4 deer and only 1 other person on the entire trail.  Great walk in the woods and not rocky at all!

User: kernel - 12/27/2007  [View Log Page]
Rating: 5stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: 2 hours, 30 minutes

Cold morning (freezing) but quite a few deer and birds out and very peaceful.

Short Hike
User: Miles - 1/11/2007  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 3stars Solitude: 5stars
Distance: 1.00 Mile Duration: 1 minute
Hit the trail to find the geocaches today.
There are better trails
User: James273 - 3/20/2006  [View Log Page]
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 2point5stars
Distance: 7.40 Miles Duration: N/A
This trail doesn't offer a lot. Towards the end it gets a bit more exciting. It is an easy trail and children can enjoy it.
Super fun, easy , great terrain, no people
User: Soonhorn - 11/27/2005  [View Log Page]
Rating: 4stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Cushy pine needles soft under your feet with a top canopy of pines that shade most of the trail. Look at the baby pines along the trail and listen to the quiet. The trail is easy to follow if you get a map at the ranger station. The pipeline that I read such bad reviews about is great! It is now just an open stretch on the trail. We took the kids (17 and 12) on this one. It turned out to be the easiest hike we have taken. Hardly any people and it is super cool country. So different than the rocky trails we are used to. The park is great too! Don't miss going to the dam and goofing around there at the lake. I am taking my fishing pole next time! Be sure to stop in Bastrop for some good mexican food on the way home.
Pretty cool hike on a HOT day
User: Shylock and Fiona - 9/19/2004  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 3point5stars Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
We hated the pipeline area. What I couldn't figure out is why they didn't put a trail in the woods that parallels the pipeline? It was hot and exposed and for no good reason. The trail became something very special after the second road crossing, though. This hike is worth doing for that section alone. Saw only one other couple the whole day.
Nice hike on a rainy 4th of July morning
User: kbohn365 - 7/4/2003  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 2stars Solitude: 4point5stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Drove in from NW Austin with my dog, LucyFur, for an early morning hike on the 4th of July. It was pouring -- we waited for an hour hoping the rain would stop, but decided to go for it. Very secluded and quiet. Enjoyed the forest. I plan to use this hike for backpacking practice in the fall. The trail head is right across the street from some walk-in camp sites. You can backpack the loop and camp for the night. Then backpack the loop again the next day.
User: JClair - 5/21/2002  [View Log Page]
Rating: N/A Difficulty: 4stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
Enjoyed this hike alot.....more than Bastrop........solitude is just great......saw lots of wildlife and it was just fun...give it a go.
Spectacular solitude
User: Austin Explorer - 3/24/2002  [View Log Page]
Rating: 3point5stars Difficulty: 3point5stars Solitude: 4stars
Distance: 7.00 Miles Duration: N/A
On a beautiful day I was surprised to find no other hikers on the trail. Similar to Bastrop State Park but with far fewer people. The pipeline work should be over by now and while the wide right of way does not provide the best hiking experience it only takes up a small portion of the entire hike. I especially liked the areas with pine needles drapped over everything.