Spring Lake Natural Area Professional Review and Guide
"This jigsaw piece of parkland at the northern edge of San Marcos is named for a lake that is outside its boundaries, but no matter; these 251 acres compose one of the best-preserved tracts of the typical Edwards Plateau woods and meadows in the Hill Country, with plenty of trails for hikers and bikers.
Since there were people, they have been drawn to the beautiful San Marcos Springs—and more recently, up until the 1990s, Aquarena Springs (as it was known) and its famous mermaid show, a popular Texas tourist attraction. When Texas State University bought the property, they planned to sell the area that is now the preserve for development, but a chorus of objections forced a change of plans, and this practically perfect example of Hill Country ecology is now a lovely public park. The route takes you almost to the end of the area, with a loop up to a thickly wooded hill along singletrack that is also great for cyclists."