Popular amongst those that have a destination wedding date just around the corner, adventurers looking for outdoor fun, and those that crave moments indulging in old world charm, the Texas Hill Country has long called to travelers from across the map. While the area that makes up the greater Texas Hill Country is vast, there’s only one place that’s earned the title as the gateway to it all and that’s Dripping Springs. This inviting and scenic locale has much to offer up in the way of fun and provides just the right launch point for even more exploration into this appealing terrain that makes up the region. Complete with fun local establishments to check out, boutique stores, and savory dining stops, it’s easy to get swept up in the welcoming ambiance that has long defined this destination. Just as appealing for travelers headed this way is the opportunity to get out and explore the abundance of natural attractions that exist nearby. If you’re the type of visitor that can’t wait to connect with nature, there are plenty of options to choose from in charming Dripping Springs.
Hamilton Pool Preserve
Versatile beauty is every visitor’s for the savoring when they find themselves at Hamilton Pool Preserve. Located at 24300 Hamilton Pool road, this preserve hosts a spectacular natural pool designed by Mother Nature herself within the confines of a captivating canyon crest. The wonder of this natural combination is further enhanced with the inclusion of a 50-foot waterfall that cascades over limestone ledges. Throughout the year, the waterfall never entirely stops thanks to its connecting point with the nearby Pedernales River, but during dry times, it’s likely that visitors will see the spill slow to a trickle. That being said, the pool below has a wonderful way of staying constant in its level, providing an eye-catching blue-green hue to enjoy with your own eyes or capture on camera year-round. Surrounding grottos offer up a whimsical beauty to this area which in total, covers 232 acres of ground.
The land that surrounds the pool is forested and home to a variety of local bird species that are interesting to observe as they thrive in their natural habitat. Among these is the golden-cheeked warbler. Hiking trails wind throughout this preserve to offer up a more direct route to admiring towering trees and wildlife along the way. Those hiking through the uplands of this area will find a landscape dominated by oak and juniper savannah surrounded by a plethora of wildflowers. This area is known for helping rare plant species thrive including the chatterbox orchid, red bay, and the canyon mock-orange. The preserve itself was designated as such in 1990 by the Travis County Commissioner’s Court and to this day, continues to be a place where visitors come to authentically connect with nature at it’s finest.
The Original Dripping Springs
Historic Mercer Street runs through the heart of Dripping Springs and for many, it’s appeal lies in the collection of shops and storefront that speak to centuries past. However, sitting at the very west end of this well-known street is the reason that Dripping Springs has the name it does. Fern-covered limestone slabs and ledges lend themselves to a dropping point for a trickling spring known as the original Dripping Springs. Water cascades over these ledges into a pool below and for those excited to view the original springs, limestone stairs are accessible near the Visitor’s Bureau parking lot. Stories surrounding this original spring suggest it was an important gathering point for First Nation Tribes that called the land home. Later on, it would be an essential water source for early settlers and likely, a primary reason the main street of town was built up around this area.
Charro Ranch Park
Situated at 22690 W. FM 150, Charro Ranch park covers 64 acres of land and was dedicated to the area by Lucy Reed Hibbard in 2008. The park is designed as a place dedicated to preserving the beauty of nature for all visitors. While the parameters are official, nature is truly allowed to pave its own path within this park boundaries and many come this way to enjoy wildlife viewing, bird watching, and learn about the tree and plant species thriving thanks to meticulously placed signage. Comprised of grasslands paired with Juniper and Oak woodlands, Charro Ranch Park houses a stunning variety of animal and plant life and functions as a natural drainage basin too. Over 117 species of birds nest in this area including painted buntings, eastern screech owls, black-chinned hummingbirds, and red-shouldered hawks.
Enjoy the Getaway
Taking time to unwind, relax, and enjoy Dripping Springs is sure to be an inspiring choice. Elevate the experience from start to finish by letting the team at I Love Dripping Springs help you get settled in just the right vacation rental during your next visit. Contact us today to learn more and to start planning your Texas-bound adventure!
Known and loved as the gateway to the Texas Hill Country, Dripping Springs is a scenic and exciting place to set your travel sights, particularly when you’re getting ready to enjoy a fall getaway. Complete with wonderful weather, intriguing landmarks, and plenty of options for fun in the great outdoors, Dripping Springs provides a place to rest, relax and restore your sense before winter ever has a chance to set in. Here are a few options to add to your itinerary when you’re planning your Dripping Springs vacation:
Hike Through Charro Ranch Park
When fall rolls around in Dripping Springs, Texas, the beauty of a trip this way is often rooted in the fact that the weather takes a turn for the comfortable, meaning visitors can get out and explore as easily as ever. With fewer crowds to contend with, those that love to lace up their hiking boots and hit the trails will find many of the routes open and waiting to be discovered. While there are many options when it comes to exploring the terrain through and around Dripping Springs, a hike through Charro Ranch Park is bound to please hikers of all age levels and skillsets. Located at 22690 W. FM 150, Charro Ranch Park sprawls across 64 acres of pristine land and was donated to the city of Dripping Springs in 2008 by the Reed Hibbard family. This multi-use park is perfect for walking, running, or simply enjoying the surrounding nature. Trails throughout Charro Ranch Park were designed for recreation, but also for moments of reflection in the great outdoors. It’s common to come across signs indicating specific trees, birds, plants, and more—specifically placed to give hikers reasons to stop, think, and reflect in surroundings that will surely inspire.
Take to Reimer’s Ranch Lower River Trail
For the hiker that’s looking to take their Dripping Springs fall journey even further into the heart of nature, focusing on the Reimer’s Ranch Lower River Trail is a must! Integrated into Reimer’s Ranch Park this lower river trail follows the current and provides outdoor enthusiasts with a 1.9-mile adventure to enjoy. Complete with small grottos, rock formations, and plenty of fun river views, hikers will find that this trail works just as well for the solo adventurer as the explorer looking to spend time with the family. While fall weather is ideal for this trek, the trail still tends to get warm in the afternoon hours so it’s advisable to pack plenty of water and sunscreen for the journey.
As a follow up to a hike along the Reimer’s Ranch Lower River Trail, those that enjoy taking time to spot local and migratory birds will find Reimer’s Ranch Park to be a fantastic bird spotting destination overall. Bring your binoculars and keep your eyes on the trees and skies when you’re looking to end your day of adventure on a sky-high note.
Fall Foliage Trip Through Pedernales Falls State Park
It may not come to mind as a destination where fall colors can readily be admired but the changing season does create a palette of different hues amongst the trees and many of those transitions can be viewed at nearby Pedernales Falls State Park. Access at 2585 Park Road, Pedernales Falls State Park is named for the cascade that the destination hosts which flows with energy over impressive limestone slabs. The park itself is filled with trees, foliage, and wildlife that makes it an ideal place for animal spotting, hiking, and mountain biking. From any of the trails within this park, guests can enjoy the changing colors of the season and it’s advisable to bring your camera as it’s likely you’ll run across a photo-worthy moment or two during your journey. If you’re looking to combine some time on the water with your fall foliage experience, it’s simple to put a kayak, canoe, or tube in at Trammell’s Crossing Trail and enjoy time on the water paired with perfect seasonal views.
Stroll Down Mercer Street
Considered the historic heart of Dripping Springs, Mercer Street is a fantastic destination to just enjoy a stroll when you’re in town during the fall season. Take some time to admire the architecture which speaks to eras past and feel free to do some people-watching too! This area is packed with charming shops but it’s the landmark at the end of the street that draws the most attention. Situated on the street’s west end, guests can take time to view the dripping spring for which the city was named! Flowing over limestone ledges perfectly covered with ferns, this small, yet meaningful place gives great insight into those spaces where nature and city collide.
Savor the Getaway
Whether you’re planning a fall adventure to Dripping Springs or can’t wait to enjoy the stay any other time of year, the team at I Love Dripping Springs is always on-hand to make sure you have the ideal accommodations to match. Contact us today to learn more about our properties and to begin planning!