The first time we tried to leave Austin we headed out towards Enchanted Rock to the West of the city.
We’d tried to go to Hamilton Pool along the way to Enchanted Rock but were put off by the fact we’d have to pay $15 for under an hour’s worth of entrance as the park was soon to close. Plus, you couldn’t even go swimming in the pool on that day as the bacteria levels were too high. With that we carried on to Enchanted Rock which didn’t close until 10pm, giving us plenty of time to explore.
One of the things that is constantly surprising me about America is just how many beautiful wilderness areas there are. Seriously, they are everywhere and you don’t have to travel far from cities at all.
Enchanted Rock is one such example of what I’m talking about. It’s a massive pinkish dome and has drawn people to it for thousands of years. It really is quite enchanting.
We visited just as the sun was beginning to set which made it all the more pink and enchanting but you could easily spend a day there.
There are many miles of trails in the park. Some go up the rock and some go around it. Given that we’d arrived quite late we decided to quickly do the summit trail which, as the name suggests, takes you to the summit of Enchanted Rock. At just over 0.6 miles long (0.67 to be precise) it’s a pretty quick trail but it is pretty steep in places. It’s also quite easy to get lost – especially on the way down! – and you could end up trying to scale some almost vertical rock face.
The climb is most definitely worth it though!
Tips for visiting Enchanted Rock
- Enchanted Rock Park is open daily from 8am – 10pm
- It’s $7 per adult but if you visit after 6pm the gates aren’t manned
- There are 11 miles of hiking loops at Enchanted Rock. View the Enchanted Rock hiking map here to download and print
- There is no food available in the park so bring your own. There are water fountains to re-fill bottles though
- The park gets very busy on weekends and national holidays. Plan accordingly
- Fredericksburg is the nearest town (about 20minutes away). It’s worth adding a visit on to the end of your trip