Enjoying the Golden Hour Photographers of ever skill level from DSLR to smart phone, soaked in the splendor of the South Rim. All those cameras and not a single selfie was taken! Yet as the Golden light faded the dreaded bus loads of tourist arrived. Read more
Trip Advisor is great at laser targeting potential wallet-flushing theme parks, hotels, and dining experiences. But if you’re looking for public lands, rock formations, abandoned mines, ghost towns, and the such I advise asking a local. Generally, the older the better, who else knows all the locations, history, and has time to deal with a few meddling kids and their dog. If only the campervan more resembled the Mystery Machine, and Ruth looked a little less (judgmental Schnauzer) and more Scooby Doo. Read more
The accumulation of daily life and it’s endless demands tightens around me like a python squeezing joy from my soul. This is the first day in a week long Texas State Park trip. After only a few hours of climbing, photography, and hiking, my smile quickly returns.
Dark storm clouds churned and twisted through the valleys and canyons of Guadeloupe Mountain. Attempting to evade the storm, Ben pushed our rental car like Ricky Bobby setting up a “Shake and Bake.”From the passenger’s seat I foolishly ignited my jet-boil camp stove. Lauren, always “the loving wife” pointed out the absurdity of boiling water in a moving car. Yet in regards to coffee, I don’t concern myself with trivial details such as 2nd degree burns or carbon monoxide poisoning. Plus, I trusted Ben’s driving skill; that is until I realized he was videoing me with his phone while driving!
No chance of rain in the forecast, a “mild” 102 degree Southern Summer weekend, what to do? The woods are too overgrown, and due to recent flooding there are no accessible sandbars on our favorite kayaking rivers….. Hum. We live an hour from the beach! Read more
Ecology and Environmentalism are topics I am not qualified to discuss. Yet, after the semantics, who with any sense of conviction doesn’t love nature? I was raised in deep South East Texas a place where hippies don’t chain themselves to trees in protest of deforestation. As a child we burnt our trash in a metal 55 gallon drum; on a side note there is nothing more redneck than throwing aerosol cans into a fire. It is safe to say my views have changed greatly. But, then again no great southern story ever starts with a deeply studied, well dressed gentlemen saying, hold my salad and watch this? Read more
Charlie, Zach, and Ray, had never been camping, yet for some insane reason they excepted our invitation to car camp and hike Boykin Springs. Ray quickly caught on to the axe wielding lumbar jack bit, as Zac set up tents, and Charlie as our little sister somehow managed to watch as we worked. Around the campfire Lauren and I shared the history of Boykin Springs from the lumber boom to the C.C.C restoration project my grandfather had worked in planting trees. I told one of my many how not to hike stories in which I was stuck in a giant briar patch during sleeting rain with only a compass and an off scale map. Sometime around 9:30pm I emerged upon a dirt road looking as though I had lost a Mortal Combat death match with 1000 crazy ninja cats. Read more