Bastrop Paddling Trails

The Bastrop Paddling Trails project is a collaborative effort between local partners (listed below) and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s (TPWD) Texas Paddling Trails program to bring 24 miles of designated paddling trails to the Bastrop community. TPWD provides support for inland paddling trails including: website, kiosk design, river survey, press releases, and launch event planning. TPWD and the City of Bastrop have entered into an agreement on this partnership. BEDC has awarded a grant for $2,000 for kiosks and promotions. Environmental Stewardship is administering the grant.

The Bastrop Paddling Trails comprise a 24 mile free-flowing section of the Colorado River composed of two distinct geological segments divided into three trails; Wilbarger Trail, El Camino Real Trail, and Red Bluffs Trail. The Wilbarger Trail flows through a unique geological formation that bisects the Calvert Bluff formation just upstream of Bastrop. The channel is strewn with large, sandstone boulders of local origin. Two tributaries enter the Colorado River in this segment: Wilbarger and Big Sandy Creeks and springs are numerous.

The El Camino Real section of the river is wide and slow-moving with a few rapids. The flood plain is flat. Several earthen cut-banks are exposed throughout this section. The river bottom is composed of sand and gravel, with gravel bars and islands providing suitable areas for camping. There is usually a sufficient flow of water in the river for recreational and aquatic life uses. A number of springs are found along this stretch of river.
The banks of the Colorado gradually steepen as the river moves downstream through the Red Cliffs Trail where the flood plain deepens and the steep banks become extremely scenic with high sandstone bluffs and cliffs, along with several islands and sand bars which are often utilized for camping and day use. For more information on the flora and fauna of the Colorado River click here.

Wilbarger Paddling Trail – 14 miles from Utley (969 bridge) to Fisherman Park
Launched September 27, 2008 at NatureFest. Map (Link to TPWD website)

El Camino Real Paddling Trail – 6 miles from Fisherman Park to Lost Pines Recreational Trails
Launched November 3, 2007 along with at NatureFest. Map (Link to TPWD website)

Red Bluff Paddling Trail – 4 miles from Lost Pines Recreational Trails to ColoVista
Scheduled to be launched in the fall of 2009.

Local Partners:

  • City of Bastrop – Applicant
  • Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA)
  • Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) Texas Paddling Trails Program
  • Bastrop Economic Development Corporation (BEDC)
  • Bastrop Chamber of Commerce
  • Pines & Prairies Land Trust
  • Rising Phoenix Adventures
  • Environmental Stewardship


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