A wet hike, but very peaceful
Barton Creek - South Gus Fruh
[View Log Page]
Distance: 2.50 Miles
Again, I set out on an early Sunday morning, to ensure the most serenity I could afford. I encounter a total of 7 people during the 3.5 hours I spent on this trail, and onyl 2 dogs and 1 bike.
The path does continue on past the first water crossing, which takes you down the bank about 150 yards past the triple-falls which affords a nice view of the falls behind you, and the serene creek streching out before you.
At the first ford of the creek, the water was only about knee deep in the deepest spot. However, at the "Water Falls" ford (at the Gus Fruh access marker on the trail) the shallow spots took me to near waist deep water. I'm 6' tall, so make that about 3' of water. There is also a strong current at this point, so best watch your footing.
I travelled up the trail towards the Gus Fruh access from this point, until I could hear cars, then turned back around. There was a nice rock outcropping to sit on and view the creek below you, but I found the nicest place to sit was actually the log bench right at the creek-side. From here you could hear the fall of the water, and under a tree, was nicely shaded.
My assesment of the hike difficulty is based on the water crossings (and current) and the general condition of some parts of the trail. There are very rocky parts where a twisted ankle is likely if you aren't careful, and some very steep inclines (especially on the impromptu trail that strecthes past the first ford).
A Great Walk in a serene setting
Barton Creek - Upper South
[View Log Page]
Distance: 5.50 Miles
If you want the be alone, get our there before lunch. I started out at 7:30 am, and saw maybe 3 people the entire way until noon. on the way out. On the way back, there were people lining up to swim and fish, bikers, and lots of dogs.
With a comfortable pace, I got there and back, stopping for lunch, pictures, and some spelunking (see below) in about 4 hours.
The majority of the walk is in the shade of overhanging foliage, alongside the creek (the path is actually the south bank of the creek in spots, watch your step).
At the end of the trail (at the "Twin Springs" marker) there is a small cave / cavern complex in the rocks from where the springs originate. The left-hand cave is a comfortably large view into a dome formed inside of the limestone head. The right-hand cave is smaller (requires hands and kness for most of it) and has a crawlable outlet at the back which winds through the rockwork for another 20 yards or so. There is a REALLY nice rock to sit on at the mouth of the cave, and the cool breeze flowing out of the rockwork gives pleasant releif from the heat of the day.
At the end of the trail is a terrific "swimming hole". It ends up being about 12 feet deep in the deepest part.
All in all, this was a very peaceful and serene hike, with beautiful views and vistas of the Hill Country beyond and the creek itself, which has no steep grades or serious incline.