Texas 29 in Llano County is a great drive for wildflower viewing. Photos by Karla Held

Texas 29 in Llano County is a great drive for wildflower viewing. Photos by Karla Held

Two highways in Llano County are well-known for their scenic beauty when wildflowers are at their peak: Texas 16 and Texas 29. To avoid the traffic and explore more of the Llano area, I set out to find some of the better back roads for a spring drive.

Starting from Mason, head toward Llano on Texas 29, and you’ll be pleasantly surrounded by wildflowers on your drive. Alternatively, you can take CR 2768 into Castell from Texas 29 and head east on CR 152 to Llano and see bluebonnets and perennials on your way to Llano. Country Road 152 may take longer with its dips and turns, but it’s well worth it. Stopping by the Castell General Store for barbecue, burgers, or bait is fun pit stop along the way. With a population of 7, you won’t experience many crowds with a detour in Castell.

Texas bluebonnets
Bluebonnets in front of Inman’s.

You know you’re in Llano when you see Inman’s Kitchen on your left off Texas 29. Starting in early March, you can see wildflowers in its parking lot garden. By the end of March, that same piece of grass is covered with the vibrant color of bluebonnets. You can pick up a county map at the Llano Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center, 100 Train Station Drive. If you’re lucky, you can talk to Briley Mitchell, the chamber director, who might tell you what he told me.

Llano County wildflowers
Bluebonnets at Board Branch Cemetery.

“You’ll find some amazing wildflowers if you’re willing to drive a bit out of town,” Mitchell said. “A few of my favorite spots include the historic Board Branch Cemetery off of (RR) 2241 near Lone Grove, Honey Creek Cemetery off of (Texas) 71 south, and Baby Head Cemetery off of (Texas) 16 North.”

Finally, the Willow City Loop scenic drive off Texas 16 South is another great place to see a roadside display of bluebonnets and Indian paintbrushes. Consider these outings on a weekday to avoid the crowds!

Story by contributing writer Karla Held