Westcave Preserve, Texas
Canyon Grotto canopied by giant cypress trees. Photo by The Conservation Fund
Austin may be the Lone Star State’s most forward-thinking city, but just outside town—in the hill country—Westcave Preserve takes you way back in time. Climbing through this 75-acre surprise of limestone caves, cypress trees and waterfalls, you know you’re in a special place.
The Westcave Preserve reaches out to area landowners to teach best practices for conserving hill country land and resources, provides nature education programs for more than 6,000 elementary and middle school children, and partners with a nearby ranch and an Episcopal Mission to run a summer nature camp for children from underserved families.
As Austin grows, the preserve’s board seeks to buffer this unique property and its quiet, otherworldly experience. We’re providing the tools to achieve this goal. With our support, the preserve recently added 45 “wraparound” acres to shelter it from the outside world.
“For many years, we’ve wanted to purchase the ‘rim around the canyon’ surrounding our grotto. The Conservation Fund lent us $1.3 million of the $2 million purchase price, allowing us to add the buffer zone we needed to expand our education programs, build a new nature trail and better protect the resources from future development.” — Molly Stevens, Executive Director