On January 4th we left The Big Easy (not sure why New Orleans is called that) and headed to Texas. Our first stop was Caddo State Park right over the border from Louisiana in Karnack, Texas (birth place of Lady Bird Johnson). Dave was so happy to be out of the big city. He never asked even once go out for a walk while we were in New Orleans. We were also glad to trade the night time sirens for the howl of coyotes once again.
Caddo is a park in the Big Cypress Bayou and when the water level is high it can turn into a maze of ponds, back water, and cypress trees. We paddled the area several times and always felt dwarfed by the size of the cypress trees. We found a beaver dam nearby and Ron actually saw the beaver slip underwater into his home. That is one of the problems with single kayaks, we don’t always see the same things now. I made several attempts to sneak up on the beaver dam and surprise him, but it never worked. At one spot on shore in the bayou, someone put up a life sized
Big Foot - seemed a likely spot for them to show up.
In exploring the area we came to the small town of Uncertain - you can imagine the good time we had with that name. There was a great little restaurant, but we're uncertain of the name right now. There was also a church called Uncertain Church. We figured it was a good place for ambivalent people to go since it was nondenominational - of course!
Currently we are in the Hill Country of Texas at a Corp of Engineer park on Canyon Lake called Potter's Creek which is a reservoir created from the waters of the Guadalupe River. This park is in the city of Canyon Lake south west of Austin. Another great park right on the water.
Today we took a 3 hour guided tour of the Canyon Lake Gorge which was formed in 2002 when the lake water overflowed the dam's spillway by 7 feet. This flood was a result of 40 inches of rain falling over the area in 6 days. The surge of water over the spillway continued for 6 weeks and washed away the
Big Cypress Bayou
water covered with floating plants
overlaying sediment and rocks to a depth of 50+ feet in some areas. A mile long gorge was formed and an ancient ocean shoreline was exposed. Also exposed was the Hidden Valley Fault Line and 110 million year old dinosaur tracks. Lagoons and waterfalls were also left behind after the water finally made its way down river. Jamie, the best guide ever, made the 3 hours go by so fast and give us quite an education in fault lines and gorges , marine fossils and dinosaurs.
An Aside - Ron found a very happy smiling bronze Buddha at a flea market. It is hollow with a soldered base. When we shook it, it sounded like something was inside. So, once home, Ron did some research. Turns out it is a cremation urn and contains someone's ashes! Ron is quite happy with his find, I'm not so sure.
We're here for another week and then we'll head to Tucson. We're hoping for warmer weather so we can finally pack our long johns away.
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