If you're looking to change your exercise routine, skip your leg day and head to River Place—one of the most challenging hikes in Austin. Each of the three trails that make up the system has something to recommend. Commune with nature on the Fern Trail, which runs by a series of waterfalls in the bubbling creek. A seemingly endless series of steps take you through the Canyon Trail, leading you past several interesting rock formations and a few scattered benches where you can huff and puff. Panther Hollow is the longest stretch, with demanding elevations in the upper part and a more restful journey through the lower—providing a much better workout cool down than any gym.
Address: 8820 Big View Dr
Parking: Street parking on Big View Dr and around 4702 Blvd, where there is a second entrance. For an extra workout, park downhill.
Length: 5 miles
Time: 1.5 hr