Texans, I have some important news for you. Summer is finally over and fall is officially here! That's right, we can finally go outdoors and not have to worry about dripping in sweat. Well, kind of. There are still somewhat hot days in our future, however the weather is much more bearable and the perfect time to visit Balcones Canyonlands' bodies of water and gorgeous views.

Balcones Canyonlands is a national wildlife refuge in Marble Falls, less than an hour away from Austin. It serves as a haven for many creatures, and a nature paradise for us humans to visit and explore. The headquarters is open Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and you're welcome to stay at the canyonlands from sunrise to sunset. If you're lucky, you'll be greeted by a rare black-capped vireo who claims the Balcones Canyonlands as its home.

At the peak of your hike (there are several trails to choose from), you'll be able to enjoy incredible views of the Texas Hill Country. If you plan on staying until the evening, you'll get the chance to experience one of those incredible Texas sunsets. We're kind of known for them at this point, no big deal. 

Whatever route you take, chances are you'll be greeted by crystal clear water at some point during your journey. While many times it's too shallow to go full-on swimming, water as beautiful as what's at Balcones Canyonlands is rare to come across. Enjoy it while you still can!

Marble Falls isn't the only part of Texas with gorgeous places to go hiking. Being such a short drive from Austin, residents from both areas will find themselves exploring each other's scenic wonderlands. After your day trip to Balcones, we recommend grabbing some grub at one of Austin's famous restaurants or bars. Okay, we've said enough. We'll leave you to tell your friends and get the planning on a roll.

Balcones Canyonlands

Price: Free! 

Address: 24518 Farm to Market Road 1431, Marble Falls, TX 78654

Why You Need To Go: This hike will lead you to incredible views and bodies of water, both perfect for a day trip before the warm weather leaves us. 

We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.

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