I love to talk with lifelong residents who have lived in the Lake Travis area for years. They’ve seen so much change, and whether they’re of “the more the merrier” or the “I like it better the old way!” frame of mind (or somewhere in between), there’s a lot we can learn from Austin and Lake Travis area natives.
Still, no matter whether you’re a longtime resident or just relocated to the Lake Travis area, there are always new places to visit, things to discover and history to learn.
So for any readers that think they know the area well and want to test their knowledge of past and current Lake Travis history here is a short, fun quiz of random facts.
Lake Travis Area Quiz (answers at the bottom – no peaking!)
1). What is the water level of Lake Travis (in feet) when it is full?
2). What are the five consecutive years that the Lake Travis high school football team won the state championship (the only Texas team to accomplish this feat)?
3). What nearby location was declared by the Texas Legislature to be the “West Pole” of the Earth in 2007?
4). What year did The Oasis — “The Sunset Capitol of Texas” — get struck by lightning?
5). Why was the Lago Vista private single runway airport so busy during the month of September 2005?
6). When was Mansfield Dam completed, establishing Lake Travis?
7). What year did Carlos’ n Charlie’s open its doors on Lake Travis? Close them?
8). How did “Bee Cave” get its name?
9). What was the original name of the Lakeway Resort and Spa, and when did it open?
10) At what area restaurant can you find classic and vintage cars and their enthusiasts gathered most Friday afternoons?
11). What was the original name of Hippie Hollow, the only legalized clothing optional public park in the State of Texas?
12). What is the name of the chunk of land that appears in Lake Travis during times of drought? Hint: soon to be renamed Always _____
13). What year was the devastating wildfire that burned 160 acres and 23 homes in Steiner Ranch?
14). What local area is known as one of the top spots for scuba diving in Central Texas?
15). Who was the “Hudson” behind Hudson Bend?
16). When did the Hill Country Galleria celebrate its grand opening?
17). True or False: When Mansfield Dam was first constructed, the main road went across the top of it?
18). True or False: The lighthouse atop Lake Travis on the drive to Lakeway was used after the construction of Mansfield Dam to prevent barges from crashing on the craggy rocks below The Oasis?
19). What year did The Oasis open?
20). Bonus question worth 3 points: Who is the owner of The Oasis?
1). 681 feet above sea level
2). 2007 – 2011
3). Bee Cave, TX
5). It was the center of operations for relief flights for Hurricane Katrina (it was the only General Aviation Center (GAC) airport in the country to support such flights).
7). Opened in 1995, Closed in 2013
8). It was named by early settlers for a large cave of wild bees found nearby. A post office named “Bee Caves” opened in 1870.
9). The Lakeway Inn broke ground in 1962 and was completed in 1963
10). Sandeez Hamburger Hut on 620
11). McGregor Park (this name has been officially restored, but it’s not as much fun to say and very few call it that).
12). Sometimes Island
14). Bob Wentz Park (aka Windy Point Park) at Lake Travis. Fire Rescue and Underwater Rescue Operations use it as a training area.
15). Wiley Hudson, an emigrant from Arkansas, secured a land grant in 1854 near a bend of the Colorado River. The ensuing farming settlement was named for his family.
16). October 2007
17). True: eventually traffic congestion forced the construction of the bridge that loops around the front of it.
18). False: it’s a utility district water tank
20). Beau Theriot
So how well do you know the Lake Travis area?
Lake Travis Sunset at The Oasis Photo Credit: Kelly Bauch at Bluebird Photography Studio