While part of the allure of Austin includes more than 300 days of sunshine per year, those visitors with more urban experience might find themselves intimidated by the unbelievable variety of outdoor activities that the city has to offer. Whether you're here for the day or plan on sticking around for a while, Mount Bonnell is a great place to get your outdoor adventures started and witness some of the incredible views the city has to offer. Check out some quick tips for the short hike!
Tips for the Mount Bonnell Trail
Actually located in Covert Park, Mount Bonnell is generally considered the highest point in Austin at 775 feet! The peak is named for George Bonnell, who served as Commissioner of Indian Affairs for the Texas Republic.
While this view is pretty high up in the sky, don't be intimidated! The overlook of downtown and the 360 Bridge is actually more of a tourist destination than a workout, and is a great hot-spot for picture-taking and those on an adventurous date. When you reach the top of the 102-stair climb, you can rest at the view deck and pavilion before making your way back down. (Pro-tip: take your date to the top for a romantic picnic!)
To get to Mount Bonnell, take 35th Street west over MoPac past Camp Mabry. After taking a left at the fork onto Old Bull Creek Road, take a right on Mount Bonnell Road and move up the hill, where you will then see parking to your left. All of this is free and, because of the short hike, is great for all ages!
As always, no matter what you do in Austin, wear sunblock, drink water and, yes, you can also bring your dog.
Is Mount Bonnell Free?
Yes! The trail is free to access and even offers free parking. Find more cheap and free things to do in Austin.
Mount Bonnell Hours
Wondering if you can you visit Mount Bonnell at night? The peak is a fantastic viewing point for sunsets and sunrises! Luckily, the trail is open from 5 a.m. - 10 p.m. daily, so you can arrive early to claim a spot for the scenic show. The park also offers several picnic tables, so bring a picnic to enjoy overlooking Lake Austin.
Mount Bonnell Accessibility
Please note that the Mount Bonnell hike requires climbing steps or accessing the peak via a gravel trail. While the trail may be accessible for some, it is not paved and consists of a quick, 200-foot elevation gain to reach the peak.
That's it! This is a great place to visit when you're in town to see what Austin and the Texas Hill Country is all about, and is now one of my favorite overlooks in the city. Bring your camera, and be sure to tag @VisitAustinTX or use #TrueAustin in your latest outdoor adventure.