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River Place Nature Trail

  4.6 ( 47 ) Favorite


5.6 mile 8.9 kilometer out and back


Ascent: 620' 189 m
Descent: -620' -189 m
High: 915' 279 m
Low: 513' 156 m


Avg Grade: 4% (2°)
Max Grade: 22% (13°)


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Trail shared by Eric Ashley

A creekside out-and-back hike that heads through a peaceful hollow.

Eric Ashley

Features Birding · Lake · River/Creek · Swimming · Views · Waterfall · Wildlife

Family Friendly Kids will enjoy exploring around the creek. Just plan on turning around before their energy evaporates from climbing all the stairs.


This beautiful gem invites visitors to quickly connect with nature. Locals love it for its beautiful scenery and enveloping tranquility. Although the trail isn't too technical, its steady climbs, rolling terrain, and countless stairs make it an endeavor.

If your party isn't up to the full adventure, it's easy to head back at any point.

Need to Know

The narrowness of the trail can involve frequent pauses to allow other groups to pass. As such, try to be courteous and give uphill traffic the right of way.


Park at either the nearby Woodland Park or curb-side at the trailhead. Look for the "Boardwalk" sign at the start of the Panther Hollow Trail and proceed around the retention pond to where the singletrack begins off the boardwalk.

Panther Hollow Trail is brief, and its super-mellow climb soon ends in a 3-way intersection with the Canyon Trail and Little Fern Trail. Keep straight onto the Canyon Trail, where the stairs and steep side-slopes begin in earnest. As you travel along the trail, the charming gurgle of Panther Hollow Creek is sure to brighten your surroundings, meanwhile its deep water provides a few wading spots along the way. To top it all off, interesting nearby rock faces help to complete this truly beautiful scene.

The latter part of the hike is almost completely covered in low trees that bring welcome shade as the elevation jumps up and down. Near its end, the trail climbs out of the hollow to the turnaround spot at River Place Boulevard.

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ADA Accessible, Flora & Fauna, History & Background


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Sep 9, 2019
Priscilla Morton
Really enjoyed this hike because it has challenging hills, is shaded the entire way and is well maintained. Good training hike. Not for beginners. 5.6mi
Aug 14, 2019
Andrew Keener
River Place trailhead to panther creek and back. Ran the stairs up until the end. Awesome trail! — 2h 30m
Jun 23, 2019
Ankit Jain
just starting 5.6mi — 2h 03m
May 23, 2019
Belinda Guerette
May 21, 2019
Yuxi Zhang
5.7mi — 2h 41m
Mar 24, 2019
Alex Cyphus
Mar 10, 2019
Taylor Patti
10h 00m
Feb 23, 2019
Russell Bader

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 47 votes


  4.6 from 47 votes
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in Texas


239 Views Last Month
11,832 Since Nov 7, 2016



Nature's stair stepper. It does not disappoint!
Nov 11, 2016 near Lost Creek, TX
Tranquil waterfalls.
Nov 11, 2016 near Barton…, TX
Hiking on the River Place Nature Trail in Austin, TX!
Jun 13, 2016 near Barton…, TX
Woodlands Park & Nature Preserve... easy trail loop around the park and creek/lake area.
Aug 28, 2017 near Barton…, TX
Woodlands Park & Nature Preserve... easy trail loop around the park and creek/lake area.
Aug 28, 2017 near Barton…, TX
Woodlands Park & Nature Preserve... easy trail loop around the park and creek/lake area.
Aug 28, 2017 near Barton…, TX

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