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Bright Leaf Preserve

Bright Leaf Preserve Bright Leaf Preserve is a 217-acre nature preserve located in northwest Austin, Texas. The preserve features a network of trails that wind through a variety of habitats, including woodland, savannah, and rocky outcrops. Visitors can explore the preserve on foot or by bike and discover the diverse plant and animal life that inhabits the area.


Bright Leaf Preserve was established in 1979 by the Austin Heritage Society, which was concerned about the loss of natural areas in the rapidly developing city. The preserve was named after the bright green leaves of the Ashe juniper trees that dominate the landscape. In 1983, the City of Austin purchased the land, and it was designated as a nature preserve.


Bright Leaf Preserve features over 2.5 miles of hiking and biking trails that wind through the different habitats of the preserve. The trails are well-maintained and offer varying degrees of difficulty, making them suitable for visitors of all ages and skill levels. Visitors can take a leisurely stroll through the woods or challenge themselves with a more rugged hike up rocky hills. Click for More


Bright Leaf Preserve is home to a diverse array of wildlife, including birds, mammals, reptiles, and insects. Visitors can spot birds like the black-crested titmouse, Carolina chickadee, and eastern bluebird, as well as mammals such as the gray fox, armadillo, and white-tailed deer. Reptiles like the Texas spiny lizard and the western diamondback rattlesnake can also be found in the preserve.


The preserve features a variety of plant life, including a mix of deciduous and evergreen trees, shrubs, and wildflowers. Ashe juniper, live oak, and Texas madrone are some of the most common trees found in the preserve, while the savannah areas are dominated by grasses and wildflowers like Indian paintbrush and bluebonnets. Visitors can also spot cacti and other succulents in the rocky areas.

Education and Research

Bright Leaf Preserve serves as an outdoor classroom for environmental education and research. The preserve offers guided tours and educational programs for school groups and the general public, covering topics like ecology, geology, and conservation. Researchers from universities and other organizations also conduct studies on flora and fauna of the preserve, contributing to our understanding of the natural world.

Bright Leaf Preserve


Bright Leaf Preserve relies on the help of volunteers to maintain and improve the trails and facilities, as well as to assist with educational programs and research. Volunteers can participate in trail workdays, plant and wildlife surveys, and other activities that support the preserve. Volunteering at Bright Leaf is a great way to give back to the community and learn more about the natural world.

Tranquility and Natural Beauty

One of the primary reasons people love visiting Bright Leaf Preserve is the sense of tranquility and natural beauty that can be found there. The preserve is home to a diverse range of plant and animal life, including oak and juniper woodlands, wetlands, and grasslands. Visitors can enjoy hiking the trails and immersing themselves in the natural surroundings, observing native wildlife such as deer, foxes, and a variety of bird species. Many visitors also enjoy the peacefulness of the preserve and the opportunity to disconnect from the stresses of daily life. Next blog post

Outdoor Recreation

Bright Leaf Preserve offers a range of outdoor recreational activities, making it an ideal destination for individuals and families seeking to spend time in nature. The preserve’s hiking trails are open to the public and are suitable for all skill levels, with a range of distances available. Visitors can also enjoy birdwatching, nature photography, and nature walks led by local naturalists. Additionally, the preserve has a picnic area that visitors can use to enjoy a relaxing lunch or snack.

Education and Learning

Bright Leaf Preserve is not only a place for outdoor recreation, but it is also a valuable educational resource. The preserve is dedicated to preserving and promoting the natural history of the area, with a particular focus on educating visitors about the importance of conservation and environmental stewardship. The preserve offers a range of educational programs and events, including guided nature walks, birding workshops, and lectures on local ecology. Visitors can learn about the plants and animals that call the preserve home, as well as the importance of preserving natural habitats for future generations.


Bright Leaf Preserve is a hidden gem in the heart of Austin, offering visitors a chance to experience the natural beauty of the Texas hill country. With its network of trails, diverse plant and animal life, educational and research opportunities, and volunteer program, the preserve is a valuable resource for the community. Bright Leaf Preserve is a must-visit destination whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a student, or simply looking for a peaceful retreat from city life.


Important Information 

  • Location: Austin, TX 78731
  • Phone: +15124597269
  • Operation time: Saturday and Sunday