Park Alert...

Trails Information

Find solitude and beauty in a river-bottom forest.

Just beyond the campgrounds, discover a quiet wilderness surprisingly close to the city. Hike or bike the wandering trails of Stephen F. Austin State Park. When you watch closely, nature reveals hidden treasures at every turn.


All trails are multiuse unless otherwise indicated.

This list may not include all trails in the park.

Trail Distance Time Difficulty Description
Brazos Bottom Trail 0.49 mi. 30 min. Easy Hike or bike along the meandering path of the current and historical flows of the Brazos River to experience the nature of a pristine bottomland forest.
Copperhead Trail 0.53 mi. 40 min. Easy Nestled into the primitive area of the park, old-growth forests along Copperhead Trail are home to bobcats and gray foxes.
Cottonwood Trail 0.71 mi. 30 min. Easy A wide path leads you from the hardwood forest of the amphitheater to the bottomland forest of the Brazos River.
Ironwood Trail 1.04 mi. 50 min. Easy Start near the Nature Center and Bullinger Creek to bike or hike along the park boundaries toward the lower floodplain forest.
Barred Owl Trail 0.69 mi. 30 min. Easy From the roadside parking by the tent loop, follow Barred Owl Trail toward our scenic overlook and into the shaded cottonwood forest for several Brazos River vistas.
Opossum Loop 0.34 mi. 20 min. Easy Take an easy stroll down the path and up the stairs to experience the edge of our bottomland forests and the old Brazos River bank.
Pileated Trail 0.68 mi. 30 min. Easy Over the creeks and through the hardwood forest, Pileated Trail leads you from the amphitheater to the Nature Center.
Nature Trail 0.12 mi. 10 min. Easy Get information on plants of the park on this shortcut from the group hall to the shelter loop.
Sycamore Trail 0.51 mi. 30 min. Easy Majestic cottonwoods and sycamores cool the path from the RV restroom down toward one of the river access points.
List of Trails

Points of Interest

GPS coordinates shown in decimal degrees.

Point Latitude Longitude 360° Views Description
Scenic Overlook 29.8212° -96.1059° View from the scenic overlook View the mighty Brazos River and the forces that helped to carve out the bottomland forest of the park.
Old Brazos River Bank Bottomlands 29.8259° -96.1192° View from the bottomland forest, at the intersection of the Cottonwood Trail and the Copperhead Trail Come to this spot and see the distinction between the upland, hardwood forest and the bottomland forest, based on the old Brazos River bank from 1930.
Picnic Area 29.8135° -96.1120° View from the picnic area This day-use area is perfect for a shaded picnic or barbecue under the pecan trees.
Wildlife Viewing Station 29.8218° -96.1138° A view of the wildlife viewing station Capture a glimpse of pileated woodpeckers, strolling white-tailed deer, or the digging nine-banded armadillos at this convenient blind.
List of Points of Interest

Staying Safe

  • Know your limits. Prepare for sun and heat. Wear sunscreen, insect repellent and appropriate clothing/hiking shoes.
  • Drink plenty of water. Your body quickly loses fluids when you’re on the trail. Bring a quart of water per hour of activity.
  • Tell others where you’ll be. If possible, avoid exploring alone. Tell someone where you are going and when you plan to return.
  • Wear a helmet when biking. Check with park headquarters to match the ride to your skill level. Wear a helmet to protect your self in case of a crash.
  • Potentially harmful plants and animals may live here. You’ll see them more easily if you stay on trails. Do not approach wildlife!
  • Check for trail closures. Certain trails may be closed during prescribed burns or for other resource management work.

Trail Etiquette

  • Trash your trash. Pack out all of your trash and Leave No Trace.
  • Leave feeding to nature. Feeding wild animals will make them sick. Please do not feed them.
  • Take only memories and pictures. Please don't disturb or remove any of the park's plants, animals or artifacts.
  • Watch for grazing cattle.  Give them plenty of space and do not approach these animals.