Canyon Lake is a great place to fish, water ski, and enjoy a fast boat on a big lake. Just below Canyon Lake Dam in the Guadelupe River there is fishing for rainbow trout — its deep cool water outflows produce some Alaskan size bows.
In fact, if water sports are your thing you're just as close to some of the Highland Lakes, a chain of six lakes (Lake Buchanan, Inks Lake, Lake LBJ, Lake Marble Falls, Lake Travis, and Lake Austin) fed by the Lower Colorado River as it descends through the northwest Hill Country toward Austin.
Gruene is also on the Guadelupe river (pronounced Green) is known for the famous Gruene Hall, a music venue that attracts a famous musicians and boot scootin couples from all around the Hill Country.
Gruene is located right next-door to New Braunfels famous for Comal River tubing enthusiasts, fun-filled Schlitterbahn Water Park, and the annual Wurstfest Celebration.
Texas Hill Country is home to an amazing variety of beer and wine that is native to the area. There are close to 100 beer gardens, over 30 wineries and a couple of excellent local breweries within just a half hour drive from the Ranches of Brushy Top.
Our early German settlers started our tradition of brewing. Current examples of locally brewed beer include Pecan Street Brewing and Real Ale Brewing. Beer gardens are prevalent around the area to satisfy the thirst and enjoy the beauty and climate of the Hill Country outdoors. You could do a full tour of all the fun locations, but be sure to have a designated driver.
You're also in the middle of the Texas Hill Country wine trails. A run down US 290, the wine road, will take you past or near over 30 wineries that produce a wide variety of high quality and award winning wines to meet everyone's tastes. Wineries have been around Texas since the 1650's and the quality consistently rivals the famous Napa Valley. Throughout the Hill Country, wineries offer tastings with tours that are guided or self-guided.
There's so much to see and do, it's hard to know where to start, but here are a few incredible outings you don't want to miss:
Enchanted Rock State Park is an incredible natural wonder that attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year to see an exposed granite dome which is a batholith formed in the earth's magma and exposed over eons. The dome is over a mile in diameter and is said to be among the oldest rocks in Texas. Like an iceberg, most of the batholith is below ground level. Incredible rock formations have been created or calved off to provide a mystical formations, caves and a great lesson in geology. A single Texas Ranger held off a determined band of Comanches who believed that the formation was sacred or haunted.
Every trip from Brushy Top seems like a scenic drive, but two favorites are Devil's Backbone (Ranch Road 32) connecting Blanco to San Marcos, and the Willow City Loop west of Fredericksburg.
Dinosaur tracks can be seen in the Blanco River just outside of Blanco. Other sets of tracks can be found in nearby ranches adjacent to Brushy Top.
The Willow City Loop is famous for its springtime wildflower exhibitions. There is also a wildflower seed farms where you can buy fresh seeds to enhance, the wildflowers already on your land. Lavender farms and olive orchards that rival any world wide — both offer tours and produce of their efforts.
There’s also great golf all around our Hill Country location. Courses here take full advantage of the varied topography and clear running water. From casual to classy, you can find a nearby course that suits your style and budget.
The Texas Hill Country is also ideally suited for day trips or longer vacations revolving around honing your cooking skills. Onion Creek Kitchens at Juniper Farms is one of the best options for Hill Country visitors who wish to experience what the travel industry has termed Culinary Vacations. Located in beautiful Blanco, TX, the farm offers a medley of cooking experiences that take you back to the essentials with trips to local farms, wineries and markets, after which students return to the kitchen to create a menu based upon items they acquired that day. Combine your classes with a stay in one of the farm's beautiful cabins, adding on a massage, yoga class or just a long soak in the sauna to make your learning vacation an indulgent one as well.