Saturday, January 31, 2015
Big Bend National Park, Day 2
It was a chilly night for sure, it was 35 degrees when we woke up. Needless to say, we were awake relatively fast. However, we had a big itinerary on the docket - see the rest of the park in one day!
Fog obscured part of the landscape but this is no normal fog. It may obscure the scenery but what it leaves in its stead is an icy wonderland.
We drove through to Chiosos Canyon, hoping to see more and more of this icy result of the fog. instead, we were rewarded with spectacular views of the mountains and resisted the urge to tell everyone that they were heading for a surprise when they left their camp area.
We headed further out west and headed to the Grapevine Hills Trail to see Balanced Rock. The geologic formations were impressive as were the clouds. If I couldn't have my blue, clear sky, then I was pretty happy to have impressively unique, dimensional clouds.
We also explored the Burro Mesa Canyon Drop-Off hike. There are TONS of hikes in Big Bend but they are relatively easy or a really long of a drive. We needed to see a bulk of the park so we opted for the shorter but still fun hikes. This was in a river run-off and it was pretty neat.
We followed the Scenic trail all the way to Santa Elana Canyon. For some reason, I felt done in but L made the short hike and I river watched which was incredibly peaceful. He was rewarded with one of our few wildlife sightings - a beaver hard at work at building his dam.
After that, we took advantage of L's 4WD on his car and took the unpaved road towards Teralingua, a nearby ghost town. While we were rewarded by a momentary rainbow, the ghost down was more of a tourist historic district rather than the ghostly remains of a town.
We had hopes that with the sun breaking through all the cool cloud formations that we'd get a good sunset - but alas, it wasn't meant to be. However, it was 42 degrees at sunset and not as windy, so we were hoping for a warmer night. At dinner time, however, we were entertained by a small lightning storm that turned into a decent downpour for a few minutes. Thankfully, it didn't prove to be a huge, drowning Texas thunderstorm. I was so chilly eating dinner that I thought about abandoning it in favor of trying for lightning photography. But hunger and laziness won out. I'd already taken what felt like a million pictures.