Scenic USA - Texas

Twin Falls

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Twin Falls - Austin, Texas

Photo by Jason Merlo
Jason Merlo Photography

   The Balcones Canyonlands Preserve (BCP) was established to protect the wild habitat around the ever expanding sprawl of Austin. Made up of a collection of separate land parcels, the preserve hopes to spare eight of Travis County’s endangered species. Just to the southwest of the capital city, the Barton Creek site is the second largest of all the BCP's seven macro-sites. Its acreage includes potential habitats of the golden-cheeked warbler, black-capped vireo, the Barton Spring salamander and bracted twistflower.
     Here in western Travis County, a fickle Barton Creek flows through Barton Creek Wilderness Park's woodlands, grasslands and wetlands ... an area highly dependent on the amount of Austin rainfall. Here in the Hill Country, the beautiful blue-green waters occasionally turn into a muddy torrent. Other times during drought conditions, Barton Creek slows and withers into a parched creek bed. This exceptional Twin Falls scene captures the inviting clear waters of Barton Creek nearby Austin's South Mopac Expressway.
     Although the creek is slowed with a handful of low dams, kayakers and paddlers patiently wait for the water to rise to provide Class I to III Barton Creek whitewater. Proving very dangerous at times, paddlers are warned that this is not for novices. Just above the confluence of the Colorado River, a dam forms Barton Springs Pool. Here is a great spot to escape the blistering summer heat of Texas. Beyond the dam, newbie paddlers enjoy the lazy river as it joins the state's Colorado River.

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