Thursday, July 4, 2013

A Unique Terlingua 4th!

Happy 4th of July!!!!

The Starlight Theater this evening 070413
What a beautiful day it was for an Independence Day celebration here in Terlingua. Kathy invited us over to her house for a 4th of July picnic under her new awning. It was probably one of the best 4th of July Celebrations I have been to while here in Terlingua. I met people that I have met before and new friends as well.

Kathy was a great host along with her two wonderful Chihuahua mix and Corgi - Border Collie mix. It was a fantastic relaxing day spent just chatting and visiting with everyone there.

I met a fiddle player and a violin player at the gathering!

When the hour of 9pm arrived, Raoul and I decided to head on over to the Terlingua Ghost town to watch the fireworks. As we were approaching the ghost town from a fair distance on FM 170 we could see some thick smoke. They must have started the fireworks without us. We heard that the kids fireworks were going to begin first, such as sparklers etc. We drove closer and as we topped another rise in the road we could plainly see two humongous bonfires. It became dark really fast so we parked a few hundred yards from the Starlight parking lot since there appeared to be alot of vehicles moving around also looking for parking. As soon as we opened the truck doors we could tell that something was not right with the crowd. There were too many excited people and they weren't wearing the normal, "shock and awe" expression one usually sees at 4th of July pyrotechnic shows. There were shouts of fear and shock.

....and weeeeeellll. That's about as far as the 4th of July celebration got.

It seems, from speaking with other people that we knew, the fireworks, well, got out of hand, to put it lightly. From what I can understand, A spark jumped into the wrong box. There wasn't enough time to get the box away from the rest of the fireworks so they did the next best thing...they ran. One witness said that he was standing around the box when it happened and then he said, 'that can't be good' and then ran. As he was running, the fireworks were speeding past him in a flurry.

Quite a few people were hit with hot sparks but I don't think that anyone was seriously injured...as far as I know. By this point Raoul and I just joined the crowd on the Porch of the Starlight Theater after getting a refreshing beverage, Me: A margarita of course, Raoul: some sort of beer in a bottle.

Terlingua Fire and EMS on the job the parking lot of the Starlight Theater and Trading Post

Terlingua Fire and EMS giving us some good fodder for the next few weeks.
We left a little after ten. Needless to say, between the Terlingua Fire and EMS and Deputy Paul and Deputy Patrick no fireworks display was going to be in our very immediate future.

I never expected my 4th to be this exciting. Why can't we have something like this on a monthly basis? Just askin'.

Have a great day!!!

Remember, The world is what we make it.

Charlton

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Through a Window Hazily

Looking Through The Window Hazily


Raoul and I went on a hike today in the Chisos Basin inside the Big Bend National Park. We took our cameras of course. Whom ever said that the desert is a barren wasteland has never been here. There were more flowers blooming that I have, again, never seen before. I find it amazing at the amount of living things surviving in the desert in the extreme heat.

I was driving pretty slow in order to be able to stop if I saw some wildflowers to photograph. We stopped at one spot and we found several different flowering plants just at that one location. Then we drove on to our final destination for the day, The Chisos Basin and the restaurant and then on to hike the Window Trail. In the five years I've lived here, I have never hike the Window Trail. We bumped into some friends eating at the restaurant, Ray and Anita. They advised us that the Window Trail is 2.5 miles to the Window and 10 miles back. I knew it was going to be a hike but I had no idea it really was 'down' and then 'back up'.

We had almost arrived at the end of the trail to what is referred to as The Window when we passed a young couple returning from there. They told us that they had encountered a mother bear and her two cubs. They stated that the mother bear did not seem to concerned with them so they went on to the window and began the return hike when they encountered us. Well. I have had two mama bear encounters with cubs in both instances being alarmed and climbing a tree. In one case at Yosemite, the mother bear charged after me. I was lucky enough to have another hiker coming down the path towards me which prompted the mother bear to back off and return to her cub.

So, I was not ready to tempt fate again. However, the couple said that the mother bear had probably moved on off the path. On Raoul and I went and continued the hike towards the window. After a few feet, we noticed that the last few yards were in a small canyon with no where for us or the mother bear to go if we encountered each other. The wind blew again and we decided all at once and together to return to the parking lot. We hike on upwards and soon encountered the young couple. They asked if we had seen the bear. We said no. They then said that they encountered the bear just a few seconds prior to seeing us again. Apparently the bear and cubs had walked up the creek adjacent to the path and we had apparently not even noticed the mama and cubs. All four of us were glad to be together as we returned to the trail head. We began making noise, singing etc. It was an exciting day to say the least.

Below are the flowers we found while on our adventure today.



I think this is a species of Acacia which I believe is related to the Mimosa plant.









Cactus Wren nest as is typical in the crook of a Cholla cactus in the Chisos Basin.

A Mallow species of flowering plant along the Window Trail


The Window as seen from the trail head inside the Chisos Basin. We are at 6000 ft and looking down to Terlingua and the desert floor approx. 2800 - 3000 ft.

I didn't pay it much mind going down. I was semi-catatonic so I don't recall seeing it on the way back.


Appears to be a type of grasshopper I found hanging out on the inside of a Century Agave.


A closer view of the Century Agave bloom stalk.



I was exhausted
We felt great on the trail down. We were snapping and shooting photos like crazy. On the way back up from the Window was a different story. I was so tired all I was concentrating on was the right foot going in front of the left foot. If anything felt it was photogenic, it would have to have jumped in front of me and stopped me. Ray and Anita were right. It was 2.5 miles down and 10 miles back.

The sunset this evening was somewhat like the previous posted sunset.


Enjoy.

Remember, the world is what we make it.

Charlton