Shoal Creek Conservancy is a proud steward of the 13-square-mile Shoal Creek watershed and the creek and trail running through it, bringing to life the Shoal Creek corridor in Austin, Texas. We champion the Shoal Creek watershed in order to create a healthy and vibrant community.
We restore fishable, swimmable waters, empower the public to steward Shoal Creek, and spearhead on-the-ground improvements that make Shoal Creek and its Trail safer, more accessible, and more inspiring places to be. We envision a fishable, swimmable creek and a lively trail supported by an engaged community who take an active role in stewarding both public and private lands within the watershed. We aim for the Shoal Creek Trail and Bikeway to become part of a citywide network of urban trails that makes being active a fun, easy, and daily choice for all Austinites.
The Shoal Creek watershed provides an oasis in a rapidly growing urban area and we believe that with thoughtful investment, this natural treasure can better benefit our ecology, economy, and enjoyment.
Our Strategic Plan details the Shoal Creek Conservancy’s commitments and plans to work towards this mission.
Shoal Creek Conservancy envisions a continuous network of green spaces stretching throughout the watershed, connected by hike-and-bike trails in a healthy habitat. Restored, enhanced, and celebrated, Shoal Creek will shine even more brightly as a central part of our city’s cultural heritage.
Shoal Creek Conservancy has spent years working with our community to develop actionable plans to make the Shoal Creek Trail an all ages and abilities trail with greater connections to Austin’s wider trail network and to return Shoal Creek to a fishable and swimmable creek. With these completed plans now in hand, our team is working to implement specific projects and engage our community to begin moving towards our long term goals.
What is a Watershed?
A watershed is a geographic area within which all water drains to a common source. Any water that falls on the ground in the Shoal Creek watershed eventually reaches Shoal Creek (if it doesn’t evaporate first)!
About Shoal Creek
Shoal Creek flows through the heart of Austin, Texas. In 1839, it was the city’s original western boundary. Today, it is an artery into its urban core. Shoal Creek is an eleven-mile natural waterway in a 13-square-mile watershed. The creek’s headwaters spring from the ground in north Austin near MoPac Expressway and Highway 183, and it has two main tributaries, Spicewood Springs from the west and Hancock Creek from the east.
The creek meanders through commercial properties and neighborhoods, skirts the campuses of St. Andrew’s Episcopal School and Seton Hospital near 38th Street, borders the western edge of the University of Texas, travels through Pease Park and ribbons through downtown Austin. The mouth of Shoal Creek, and the southern terminus of the trail, is located at Lady Bird Lake. Nearly 10 miles of trail and bikeways follow the creek from Highway 183 to Lady Bird Lake, providing a pathway for cyclists, walkers and runners. Shoal Creek remains a green oasis embedded in Austin’s quickly changing urban landscape.
Shoal Creek Conservancy is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.