Nathanson Creek Preserve

0.65 Mile
28 Feet
2stars (2.00)3
1star (1.00)
2stars (2.33)

In the past Nathanson Creek here was neglected and trash-laden. Invasive weeds and brambles choked the creek. Christy Vreeland spearheaded efforts to transform the area way back in 1993. Almost two decades of concensus building and hard work led to an official grand opening of the preserve in 2011.

The hike and bike path along the creek is paved and mostly flat. At less than a mile in length, the trail can be enjoyed by people of all abilities. Don't look for a hiking workout here though. Think more along the lines of a leisurely stroll.

For the majority of its length it hugs the edge of playing fields and basketball courts. Sonoma Valley High School lies just to the west of the trail and TrainTown to the south. You might even hear a train whistle now and then.

A small garden area at the northern trailhead boasts a variety of local native plants with signs describing them. The signs are in English, Spanish and even Braille.

Warm, sunny and mostly deserted
A view north towards the Mayacamas Mountains. Despite the nice weather there were not many people out and about, which is to be expected given the state of COVID-19. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Playing fields
The trails shirts around plenty of basketball courts and playing fields. You can see some of the mountains in the distance from here. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Native Plants
Native plants on display at the north trailhead. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Log Entries
COVID walk through town
By Austin Explorer on 5/9/2020
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 3stars
Distance: 3.04 Miles Duration: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Coppertone and I decided to stretch our legs while maintaining social distancing by heading to the post office and walking through town.  Part of our route was through the Nathanson Creek Preserve path but we ventured far afield from it as well.  We tried to find the shadier side of neighborhood streets and kept an eye out for stuffed bears people have left in their windows for kids, and us, to find when walking around town.

At one point we thought we had found a new Univ. of Texas alumnus working in his yard.  It turned out that though he had spent time in Austin he was not a fellow Longhorn.  He had managed a band in Austin so he was very familiar with the city's claim to fame as the Live Music Capital of the World.

We brushed by the plaza, which has more car traffic than a few weeks ago.  Foot traffic is still very low.  Most storefronts remain closed.  Given the warm, sunny weather, the crush of tourists would have presented a far different picture than what we saw today.

The flat terrain and paved path doesn't really make this a hike but we'll take just about anything we can get these days!

Fitness Walk
By Austin Explorer on 12/28/2017
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 2.00 Miles Duration: 37 minutes

Just a walk along the trail and in the surrounding area to get some mileage in rather than sitting at a desk all day.  Weather was warmer than normal for this time of year.

Simple, short stroll
By Austin Explorer on 11/2/2014
Rating: 2stars Difficulty: 1star Solitude: 2stars
Distance: 1.31 Miles Duration: 31 minutes

Coppertone and I made use of the remaining light of day after taking in a play at a nearby theater.  We covered the extent of the trail here is just over 30 minutes, even taking a few moments to look at some of the native plants on display at the north trailhead.