Brian Greenstone

The Greenstone Guide to Austin & The Hil Country



The Hill Country Flyer is a steam train... well... the steam engine is broken, so they're using a diesel engine right now. But it runs between Cedar Park and Burnet. They do all sorts of trips, but rather than explain them all here, I'll refer you to their official web site at

I should point out that when you make reservations you'll have two choices: the First Class cars and the regular Coach ones. First Class costs more, but you get A/C. I've only ridden the HCF once and it was in Coach, so I don't know how much better First Class was. Coach was fun, but it's very cramped in there.

The ride to Burnet is not all that exciting - honestly I think the ride by car is a little more scenic even though the tracks run pretty much parallel the highway. It takes almost 2 hours to get to Burnet and back - the train goes inexplicably slow. If I had never ridden a train before I might have liked the HCF more, but I've taken trains in California and Europe, and I was much more impressed with those. However, the HCF is entirely run by volunteers, so my hat goes off to them for that.

Overall, the Hill Country Flyer is a fair train, and it's relatively inexpensive so if can be a fun day trip to take.


Getting to the train depot is a little confusing, so consult their map on their web site.


These pictures were all taken in May of 2002 when we had almost no rain at all, so there was just a trickle of a waterfall. Nevertheless, some great photos (click on them to see them big):

©2001-2011 Brian Greenstone