Spider Mountain Bike Park
Take your seat on a lift and watch as the journey up a towering hill reveals stunning views of a shimmering lake and peaks blanketed in oak trees. At the top, you can choose from a variety of trails mapped out based on difficulty level. This may sound a lot like your typical experience at a ski resort, but not so in this case. Welcome to Spider Mountain Bike Park in Burnet, the only year-round, lift-served bike park in the United States. Riding the trails here is not just a must do, but instead a rite of passage for all mountain bikers. Located 60 miles northwest of Austin, the park is the place to go for a mountain biking experience like no other.
Whether you’re a novice or an expert, you’ll find a Texas-sized serving of world-class trails at Spider Mountain. Load your bike and take a seat on a chair lift that ascends 350 feet to the hill’s peak. Put on your gear and pick one of the park’s nine trails, ranging from the easy Itsy-Bitsy to the advanced Stinger.
Set out and let gravity do the work, as all the trails are downhill single tracks that wind and weave between trees and over manmade ramps and other features. Ride to the end of the trail, take a moment to catch your breath, and ride the lift up the hill to conquer another trail.
Riding Spider Mountain’s trails can keep you busy for days, yet there’s even more to do here than engaging in some two-wheeled fun. Head over to Thunderbird Lodge to savor the summer sun on the shores of Lake Buchanan. Rent a stand-up paddleboard or a pontoon boat from the resort’s private marina, which also offers slips for a fee for visiting boats. The lake is an excellent place to fish for Guadalupe, largemouth, striped, and white bass, along with catfish and crappie, so make sure to bring your fishing gear.
Planning to stay a few days? Reserve a unit at Thunderbird Lodge and you’ll be just a quick spin away from all the action at Spider Mountain. The lodge has 24 cottages and cabins that can sleep anywhere from four to 18 guests. The Texan, a luxury two-story, four-bedroom log cabin that features a wraparound porch, privacy and great views of the lake . When you’re not pedaling along the trails, kick back by the swimming pool, grill up some burgers in the picnic area, or play a game of pick-up basketball or volleyball.
If you’re looking for some of the best mountain biking in Texas, along with a getaway to the rugged beauty of the Texas Hill Country, find your way to the Spider Mountain Bike Park and the Thunderbird Lodge.
Burnet, TX 78611