FunStuff

We were in Emory (county seat of Rains County) for a volksmarch.  We lucked out as we walked right past the Courthouse Square where all the cars for the car show were assembled.  We had wonderful fall weather for this walk and really enjoyed time strolling threw the parked cars.  Hope you see one you like.

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This is State Historic Site and it costs $4.00 to get entry.  This frontier post was established to guard the upper “San Antonio – El Paso” Road.  Set on a hilltop it allowed distant views in all directions.

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The post was home to 350-500 men.  The Hospital Building now houses the museum, gift shop, etc.

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There was a spring a quarter of a mile away that provided dependable water for the post.  There is a nature trail that leads to it and the quarry and lime kiln.

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The fort is constructed of stone that the soldiers quarried themselves.

Officers brought their families with them so there was a school on post but I didn’t take a picture of the school.

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The commanding officer’s home was the only two story building.  It was constructed in 1856 and was destroyed by fire in 1941.

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Ruins of the officers’s quarters.

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Ruins of the enlisted men’s barracks.  It was once the longest military building west of the Mississippi River.

The “Caverns of Sonora” is a unique cave located 8 miles west of the small city of Sonora. The cave has been operated commercially since July 16, 1960.

This was an interesting tour with a knowledgeable guide. We had a wonderful time.

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The cave’s most famous formation was “the butterfly”. It was the only known formation like it in the world. It was formed by two fishtail helictite growths that share the same attachment point of the cave wall. On November 21, 2006, the butterfly formation was vandalized by a member of a tour group.  This is the remaining wing.

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There were several pools.  Only one of which you are allowed to toss pennies into for good luck.  This is not that one.

 

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The tour involved going down 350 steps.  So you need sturdy footware.

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Located at the corner of  South Abe Street and West Avenue D this is a sculpture garden and flower garden (flowers need water badly).  We visited and found this.

 

 

 

 

Located at 24 S. Park Street.  This water garden was created by Kenneth Landon in 1988.  The collection includes the dark purple Zanzibar Lily (no longer existing on the island of Zanzibar), the rare Blue Lotus of the Nile, and the massive night blooming Victorias from the Amazon, whose pads can reach up to eight feet in diameter.  Here are the pictures I took at the garden.

 

 

 

We had beautiful weather for this cruise in, and the crowd came out.  There were more cars than the Church of the Open Door parking lot could hold.  Here are a few that caught my eye this time around.

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The complete Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail goes from the MoPac Expwy on the West to Pleasant Valley Road on the East.  At the MoPac there is a pedestrian bridge under the car bridge.  At Pleasant Valley Road you walk on sidewalk along the edge of the road.  We did not walk the complete loop.  We have walked the Congress Street Bridge to the MoPac loop many times as it is an official Volksmarching Event.  Today we went the other way for the first time from the Congress Street Bridge to Pleasant Valley Road.  About a fourth of the distance is on a boardwalk.

Bat Sculpture at end of Congress Street Bridge.

Bat Sculpture at end of Congress Street Bridge.

Entrance to the boardwalk section of the trail.

Entrance to the boardwalk section of the trail.

Duck feeding in the shallow water.

Duck feeding in the shallow water.

Austin skyline from the boardwalk.

Austin skyline from the boardwalk.

Fewer people on this end of the trail.

Fewer people on this end of the trail.

One of the entrances to the boardwalk.

One of the entrances to the boardwalk.

One of the 36 bronze belts decorating the boardwalk.

One of the 36 bronze belts decorating the boardwalk.

These belts are by artist Ken Little.

These belts are by artist Ken Little.

View under I-35.

View under I-35.

Looking ahead at boardwalk past I-35.

Looking ahead at boardwalk past I-35.

One of several turtles we spotted.

One of several turtles we spotted.

Pretty flower along the riverbank.

Pretty flower along the riverbank.

I think this is a Heron.

I think this is a Heron.

Yeah, nice bathrooms along the trail.

Yeah, nice bathrooms along the trail.

Nicely done graffiti on the powerline base.

Nicely done graffiti on the powerline base.

Looking across the river at the trail we will be walking.

Looking across the river at the trail we will be walking.

One of the artists featured along the trail.

One of the artists featured along the trail.

Nice place to rest in the shade and catch the breeze off the water.

Nice place to rest in the shade and catch the breeze off the water.

More pretty plants along the riverbank.

More pretty plants along the riverbank.

Another nice graffiti.

Another nice graffiti.

Mural on power plant wall.

Mural on power plant wall.

Nice arch with metal cactus adornment.

Nice arch with metal cactus adornment.

Another bridge.

Another bridge.

Another music artist featured.

Another music artist featured.

Pretty swan.

Pretty swan.

Another bridge.

Another bridge.

More music artists.

More music artists.

Swan boat in front on Congress Street Bridge.

Swan boat in front on Congress Street Bridge.

Swan boat looking down from the bridge.

Swan boat looking down from the bridge.

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