Explore the Balcones Canyonlands Wildlife Refuge while staying near Spicewood in Texas. The refuge is home to many songbirds and other wildlife that flourish throughout the protection of the National Fish & Wildlife Service. The Balcones got its name from the Spanish explorers that once trekked through the land, according to the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Visitors can enjoy the Balcones Canyonlands today through the many lookout towers and events that occur throughout the year.
24518 FM 1432, Box 1
Marble Falls, TX 78654
Shin Oak Observation Deck
The Shin Oak deck offers a bird's eye view of the Vireo habitat, according to the US Fish and Wildlife Service, along the north side of the Balcones Canyonlands Wildlife Refuge. Visitors staying at a nearby Spicewood Bed and Breakfast can enjoy viewing the vireos all year round and especially after they arrive in April of each year. The deck stays open all year except the time during March through April when the vireos come back to the Balcones Canyonlands Wildlife Refuge for nesting. The vireos remain within view of the deck and many tourists hear songs during their visits to the Shin Oak observation deck.
Warbler Vista and Sunset Deck
Within the Balcones Canyonlands Wildlife Refuge is the Warbler vista that offers visitors over two miles of trails. The hiking trails travel through the Warbler habitat within the refuge. The trails that cross through the Balcones Canyonlands wildlife offer lake views of the nearby Travis Lake. The trails lead towards Sunset Deck that offers a spectacular view of the sunrise and sunset. Visitors staying at a nearby Spicewood Inn can enjoy the natural setting offered by the Balcones Canyonlands from the view along the Sunset Deck.
The Doeskin Ranch is the trail offered within Balcones Canyonlands that provides the longest distance of trail loops. The trail goes up to 2.2 miles and offers a view of the waterfall. The trail provides an easy distance for any level hiker to walk and see the views along the Balcones Canyonlands.
Balcones Songbird Festival
With the ongoing events happening at the Balcones, the annual Songbird Festival provides a memorable experience for visitors staying in nearby Spicewood. The event takes place in the springtime and, according to Friends of the Balcones Canyonlands, provides tours for spotting the warblers and vireos. In the 2009 festival, according to the Friends of the Balcones Canyonlands, several hundred people showed up and spotted over 100 different bird species along with two rare sightings of the Lazuli Bunting and the White-faced Ibis.
Ongoing Events at Balcones
The Balcones Canyonlands Wildlife Refuge always offers ongoing events throughout the year. The annual celebration of the Wildlife Refuge Week provides visitors plenty of activities for the whole family. The event takes place in the fall with guided walks and programs including photography and animal migration. When visiting the Spicewood area in Texas, be sure to check the local calendar of events for what's happening at Balcones Canyonlands Wildlife Refuge.