Sunday, June 9, 2013

Number 21: Mission Tejas State Park

The weather this weekend has been amazing for June in Texas.  Into the 60's at night with light breezes and low humidity.  Beautiful.  We took advantage of the situation (how many more weekends like this would there be before October?) and trekked out to Mission Tejas State Park.

While Breck was checking in to get our pass, I snapped a few pictures of the wildflowers growing near the office . . .

. . . and the hummingbirds frequenting the feeder.

My parents joined us and we headed out to the trails.

The trail was interesting with a lot of well placed rocks for steps.

It was still early in the day and the shadows were long.

I was happy to see that the pine bark beetles that have plagued so many other pine forests had not made a huge dent here.  Yet.

For the most part the trails were in the shade.  That's always a plus.

All the shade also means there were lots of small mosses growing everywhere.

But there were sunny spots for the wild flowers to thrive as well.

Butterfly Weed
Butterfly Pea
Fleabane Daisy
There were many bridges that spanned all the washouts and gorges, and each one was constructed differently.

There was a pond, but it was not the main attraction of the park.

A few turtles called it home though.  You can't tell from the picture, but these guys were really big.

We spooked a deer when we first started down the trail, but after that, it was all about the little guys.

Leaf-Footed Bug (Stink Bug)
Black Vulture
I saw a red-headed woodpecker when we first arrived, but didn't get a picture.  He was just too fast.  

At the end of the trail (also at the beginning since it was a loop) was the Rice Homestead which was built in 1828 and donated to the park by the family in 1973.  

And yet again, as is often the case on our trips, we did not see another hiker the entire trip.   It's nice and sad  at the same time.  Our state parks are amazing.

See more of our Texas State Park Adventures