Trip update: sunshine breaks through in Texas


A cairn of stones alongside the South Llano River

We took a southerly route in hopes of warmer travels, but the eastern cold seemed to follow us south, except for one day in Alabama.

Finally, in West Texas, the sun broke through. We had a warm day at South Llano (pronounced “lano” rather than the Spanish “yano” by the locals) River State Park and enjoyed a walk along the river. Continue reading

Westward ho, part one


The Tensaw River, which borders Blakeley Park

After a one-night stopover at a nice state park in Georgia, we crossed into Alabama, where we spent two nights at Historic Blakeley State Park. (We passed through the area that was hit by tornadoes that killed 23 people, but we were long gone by then.)

Although it’s called a state park, Blakeley is financed and run separately from the Alabama park system. It is the site of an early 19th century settlement that briefly sought to rival Mobile as a port before it fell into decay and disappeared. Continue reading

A day in Canyonlands National Park


Canyonlands National Park is about 30 miles from Arches. It too has fascinating rock formations, but in some ways it’s a different experience. Part of the reason is that it’s more remote and so has fewer visitors.

The park has three sections that are not connected to each other: Island in the Sky, the Needles, and the Maze, which can be reached only by four-wheel drive or water.

We went to Island in the Sky, the most accessible. Island in the Sky is essentially a giant triangular plateau formed by the Colorado and Green Rivers, which meet at the southern end.

Like Arches, the photos really tell the story of Canyonlands.

Continue reading