by Rowan Prothro and Casey Carter
Commons Ford Ranch Metropolitan Park is a 215 acre park located in Austin, Texas. Hiking trails can be found in the park’s three major regions: the prairie, the canyon, and the chaparral.
The prairie at Commons Ford is a restored site and features many native grasses and wildflowers. This wide open area of the park offers great opportunities for birding. Species such as the Yellow-Throated Vireo, the Nashville Warbler, and the White-Tailed Kite have been observed in the prairie. During the winter months, it is a popular place to find Central Texas wintering sparrows.
Along the trail which loops around the prairie, Lake Austin is accessible for more birding, fishing, or picnicking. Commons Ford Creek runs through the middle of the park and a short hike up the Waterfall Trail will take you up a canyon to a beautiful set of falls.
Open every day of the week from 5:00am – 10:00pm, admission is free to the public.
Don’t forget plenty of water, sunscreen and bug spray, and a pair of binoculars or a camera!
Located at 614 N Commons Ford Road, Austin, Texas 78733