91 votes

Lady Bird Lake

Lady Bird Lake Trail, Austin, Texas 78704 USA

Free to Visit
  • Independent
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“incredible urban oasis”

Lady Bird Lake provides a tremendous recreational resource for the state’s capitol, in Austin, TX, including hike and bike trails surrounding the shoreline as well as paddling, rowing, and fishing in the lake. Float time: 1 to 6 hours depending on route (multiple public access sites exist on lake) Please note: Float time on lake depends greatly on wind speed and water levels Lady Bird Lake (formerly Town Lake) is the easternmost of a chain of reservoirs on the Colorado River. The reservoir was formed in 1960 by the construction of Longhorn Dam at its eastern boundary by the City of Austin. The western end of the lake is bounded by Tom Miller Dam, built in 1939. The reservoir was envisioned from the beginning as a recreational venue for the city. A system of hike and bike trails was built along the shoreline of the lake in the 1970s, establishing what was then known as Town Lake as a major recreational attraction for the city of Austin. On July 26, 2007, the Austin City Council passed a resolution authorizing the renaming of the reservoir from Town Lake to Lady Bird Lake in honor of Lady Bird Johnson, the former First Lady of the United States and a long-time resident of the Austin area who had died earlier that month. In renaming the lake, the City Council recognized Johnson for her dedication to beautifying the lake and her efforts to create a recreational trail system around the lake's shoreline. Fishing Plastic worms, jigs and spinnerbaits are popular choices for largemouth bass. Light spinning or fly fishing tackle is recommended for large redbreast and redear sunfish. Large common carp, including many fish in the 20-30 pound range, are frequently caught. Wildlife and Ecology An abundance of birds, fish, and plants can be seen in and around Lady Bird Lake.  Beautiful bald cypress, sycamore, cottonwood, elm, and other trees line the lake and provide shade for recreationists as well as habitat for the wide variety of birds, squirrels, raccoons, and other wildlife residents. Paddle down to the Congress Avenue Bridge to witness the emergence of the largest urban Mexican Free-tailed Bat colony in North America. Watching the bats depart on summer evenings is an amazing sight as the 1.5 million bats fly off in search of their nightly meal of insects.

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Reviewed by

  • 3 Reviews
  • 0 Helpful
July 10, 2016
Rated 5.0

Great! Lake was epic. Trail was beautiful. Amazing views, so much to do.

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Reviewed by

  • 9 Reviews
  • 24 Helpful
January 12, 2016
Rated 5.0

This lake was a regular spot I walked with my dog during my five days in Austin. Every evening, we took to the trail that surrounded the lake and had a great experience every time!

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Lady Bird Lake

Lady Bird Lake Trail
Austin, Texas
78704 USA

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  • Parking
  • Pets Allowed
  • Restrooms
  • Wifi
  • Wheelchair Accessible
  • Credit Cards Accepted
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