April 2009


Cairn on Barton Creek

One of the nice things about the location of my current office is its proximity to the Barton Creek greenbelt. When there’s time, it’s convenient to get out for a pretty good walk over lunch. Such was this case earlier this week. I was toting the camera along with me and grabbed a couple pictures of some pretty interesting stacks of rocks. Clearly someone’s spending some time out there to get these rocks just right. One of my coworkers tells me these are called cairns. Then again, I guess you could just call it a stack of rocks. A quick scan of the web finds that some folks have made rock stacking a real art form.

If you look at little closer at the larger of these two pictures you’ll see there’s a series of these stacks up the creek bed.

Cairns on Barton Creek

Chas and Kem's Easter Tandem Ride

The weather started off a little ugly on Easter morning around here. A line of thunderstorms rolled through very early. But as quickly as they rolled through they were out of here and by late morning it was just fantastic out. A perfect, crisp and clear Easter morning.

So after a nice church service full of great music at Westminster, Kem and I took her tandem out for a spin. As you can see, we stopped for some snapshots. Here’s one of me among some wildflowers and alongside the big blue bike.

The other picture below is one of some really great looking flowers that Kem’s neighbors have growing at the front of their house.

Later we dropped the top on the convertible and took the long route out near Lake Travis on Lime Creek Road to friend’s the Moore’s for a little afternoon party they were having. Was really a great afternoon.

Unknown Flower

Slim Pickin's
New Growth

March is supposed to come in like a lion and go out like a lamb. Isn’t that how the saying goes? Doesn’t seem to work that way around here. We’ve had more than our share of really windy days in the last month and today was no exception. I saw a few hardy souls out cycling today. More power to ’em. Though otherwise a really nice day, it would have been pretty tough going out there today. Winds easily 20-30mph. I opted instead to go for a little hike. The Turkey Creek trail is not too far away so I went over there. Tucked down in the valley and in the trees it was pretty nice.

I took the camera hoping maybe I’d find some interesting wild flowers. We’re still in a drought here and it hasn’t been so great for lots of wildflowers. Pretty slim pickin’s. I managed a couple interesting pictures along the trail. The yellow flower was one of the few wildflowers I encountered. Despite the drought there’s still a fair bit of new green growth. Caught a pic of that too.

Yesterday was the annual Pedal Power Wildflower Ride in Stonewall (out near Fredericksburg). I had high hopes of riding the longer route and getting in the Willow City Loop – one of my favorite rides. I couldn’t persuade anyone else to do the ride this year but I got up early and headed out. Pretty good turnout as best I could tell. About 20 miles out though the winds had really picked up. As I cruised along at 20mph I could tell there wasn’t any wind at all in my face. It was all tail wind at that point. Great on the way out, but a tough slog back. At Willow City I either would go around the loop and face about 30 miles of cross & head winds to get back to the car, or just make the turn now back now and just do 20. Wasn’t really up for the winds yesterday so I headed back. All in all, still a good ride, though just not the one I had planned for.

They do a nice job of supporting this ride. The rest stops are amazingly well stocked with food. Once again, that first rest stop had the big plates of cheese, summer sausage and sausage wraps! I opted for just a Fig Newton instead. One of the other stops had a huge bottle of Cooks champagne and a couple bottles of orange juice. I had to laugh and of course had to ask them to make me a Mimosa. He proceeded to make me a huge juice glass sized serving. Yikes! Thanks but I’d be pretty useless if I drank all that. I had a few sips though and it was fine.