Monday, October 3, 2011

Quiet Weekend at Dana Peak Park

From Suna: I am a little late in blogging this, because that darned life keeps getting in the way, but we did have a very nice, calm and non-stressful weekend at Dana Peak Park on September 25-27. Dana Peak is on the same lake (Stillhouse Hollow) we visited last time--we were in the spaces we could see with our new binoculars in August!

This time I did a good job booking the site--there were two areas with RV sites, and we had only one other vehicle in our area, while the other one, which jutted out farther into the lake, was very crowded. We liked this site a lot, because we could look straight across to a little jetty that was unoccupied, so the wildlife was free to roam.
Ursula enjoys peace and quiet with no other campers around.

Highlights of our viewing were a pair of ospreys (sea eagles!) that entertained us greatly. We watched them fish for hours, and enjoyed watching one of them carry a wiggling fish around for about a half hour. The birds were just gorgeous in the binoculars. The patterns on their wings were spectacular. We also saw our friends the egrets and a few of the yellow warblers as well, and a roadrunner! The other real fun thing to watch was a young buck, one of the at least 30 deer we watched, who twice during the middle of the day wandered down to the lake shore and went swimming. Usually the deer just drink from the edge, but this fellow waded right on in up past his belly. He walked around looking cool and comfortable!

And speaking of cool and comfortable, we had a weather first with Ursula. Friday night we slept with the windows open. It got into the 50s, and felt wonderful. Unfortunately by Sunday afternoon it was over 100 again, but my oh my that Saturday morning coffee in the morning cool felt nice. And I was up early, having been awakened before dawn by dove hunters on the other side of the lake. Blam, blam.

Most of the weekend we just sat around and enjoyed the scenery--even the dead trees and even lower lake levels didn't deter us. We found some interesting fossils and shells, and figured out that the large group of the exact same trashcan bound together which was lying on the shore was actually a habitat for fish to breed in, that used to be at the bottom of the lake.
Actual shells and a fossil shell that used to be under the lake.

We also took a nice long walk around the park, and met some fellow RV people. They had matching shirts with their names on them, so I guess they were fully embracing the "RV lifestyle." We enjoyed them and their cute dachshund mix dog, though.

After I went on my usual sunset walk, we finally got the TV set up to where we could watch a movie, so we had that first, as well. We then stared at the stars with the binoculars for a while.
That darned sun keeps setting every night.

Sunday morning was so windy that we gave up on sitting around and watching the white caps on the lake. We took Ursula back to her home (where she hadn't been in weeks, thanks to all those repairs), and then drove in our car all over Williamson and Milam County. We checked out the town of Cameron, since we keep looking at land up there. It may be slightly more exciting than Yorktown. Slightly. But, that was nice, and we came home very rested and refreshed. That is why we got Ursula in the first place!

I am out of time to do a full-fledged review, but here are some highlights.

Highlight: Cool Evening
Lowlight: Windy Sunday morning
Site Review: Dana Peak will be really nice if the trees are ever able to grow in. It's a bit bleak right now, especially with the water so low. These parks are really nice and quiet, even when there was a large party in the pavilion on the other side of the peninsula, we felt quite isolated, in a good way. It took a little longer to get to Dana Peak than to Union Grove, and it was much nearer the civilization of Harker Heights and the military bases. But, I think we will be back to Stillhouse Hollow Lake again--I hope with more water and maybe a kayak to hang out in. I would have liked to have more to do.

Our next trip will be different--the fall campout with our Live Oak UU Church friends. I think after that we may next head out to Wild Type Ranch and camp in the pasture, next to the wooded area.

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