Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Garner State Park, TX. Grand Canyon Rapids. Charles and Diana. Bottles and Cats.

For “Travel Tuesday”:  Let’s go to Garner State Park:

Generations of Texans have spent summer days floating in the clear, cool waters of the Frio River.

Things to Do

“The cool and consistent flow of the Frio River has made it a popular summertime destination. Garner State Park, on the river about 10 miles south of Leakey and 75 miles west of San Antonio, provides camping, fishing and other activities. Numerous other privately owned campgrounds are also found along the river.”

Bald Cypress trees along the Frio River in Garner State Park

“Hundreds of thousands of visitors flock here each year to enjoy Garner's matchless vacation facilities. They swim in the clear waters of the Frio River, shoot its rapids on inner tubes, rent paddle boats, and hike its fascinating nature trails. On long summer evenings, young folks (and the young at heart) meet at the concession building for jukebox dancing every night during the summer season. Nearby is a miniature golf course, which is lighted for nighttime playing. Meals and snacks are served in the concession building, though many families prefer to take advantage of the many camping sites and do their own cooking. A limited number of cabins are available for rent. The park offers camping, hiking, nature study, picnicking, canoeing, fishing, swimming in the Frio River (unsupervised), seasonal miniature golf, paddle boat and kayak rentals (mid-March through Labor Day weekend), and bike riding (surfaced).”

File:Garner state park.jpg

The Frio River, flowing through Garner State Park in Uvalde County, Texas.

“Garner State Park is 1,419.8 acres (10 water acres of the Frio River) of recreational facilities in northern Uvalde County. Located 30 miles north of Uvalde and 7 miles north of Concan, Garner State Park has 10 acres of riverfront. The park was acquired in 1934-36 and was named for John Nance Garner ("Cactus Jack") of Uvalde, who served as vice president of the United States from 1933-41. The Civilian Conservation Corps made the park's original improvements.”

Plants & Animals

“The park has an abundance of white-tailed and axis deer, Rio Grande turkeys, mourning doves, eastern bluebirds, golden-cheeked warblers, black rock squirrels, fox squirrels, raccoons, armadillos, and many other animal species.

There is also an abundance of trees such as mesquite, Texas redbud, bald cypress, western ash juniper, Spanish oak, lacey oak, Texas madrone, cedar elm and pecan, as well as mountain laurel and agarita shrubs.”


 Garner State Park, Texas [Official]

“Built by the CCC in the 1930s, Garner has long been one of the most popular parks in Texas, and with good reason. From the spring-fed Frio River to the vast hiking trails to the summer dances, the park has a lot to offer. That's why generations of Texans have been making this Hill Country gem the place to be year round.” http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/findadest/parks/garner/ 


“Deep canyons, crystal-clear streams, high mesas and carved limestone cliffs are the brush strokes in the geologic painting of this intriguing terrain. Many backcountry paved roads wind through canyons along streams here, offering the traveler a different pace from the freeway rush.

The rock formations in this area are early Cretaceous in age, deposited over millions of years in warm, shallow seas that once covered Texas. The Glen Rose formation, a collection of limestone, shale, marl and siltstone beds, was deposited along the shifting margins of the sea where dinosaurs roamed in great numbers, leaving their footprints in the sands. The Cretaceous Sea then spread over Texas, depositing the Edwards Formation (limestone) over the Glen Rose beds. This sequence of strata - Glen Rose below, Edwards above - is found throughout this area.”


On This Day:

Three leave Powell's Grand Canyon expedition, Aug 28, 1869:

“Convinced they will have a better chance surviving the desert than the raging rapids that lay ahead, three men leave John Wesley Powell's expedition through the Grand Canyon and scale the cliffs to the plateau above.

Though it turned out the men had made a serious mistake, they can hardly be faulted for believing that Powell's plan to float the brutal rapids was suicidal. Powell, a one-armed Civil War veteran and self-trained naturalist, had embarked on his daring descent of the mighty Colorado River three months earlier. Accompanied by 11 men in four wooden boats, he led the expedition through the Grand Canyon and over punishing rapids that many would hesitate to run even with modern rafts.

The worst was yet to come. Near the lower end of the canyon, the party heard the roar of giant rapids. Moving to shore, they explored on foot and saw, in the words of one man, "the worst rapids yet." Powell agreed, writing that, "The billows are huge and I fear our boats could not ride them...There is discontent in the camp tonight and I fear some of the party will take to the mountains but hope not."

The next day, three of Powell's men did leave. Convinced that the rapids were impassable, they decided to take their chances crossing the harsh desert lands above the canyon rims. On this day in 1869, Seneca Howland, O.G. Howland, and William H. Dunn said goodbye to Powell and the other men and began the long climb up out of the Grand Canyon. The remaining members of the party steeled themselves, climbed into boats, and pushed off into the wild rapids.

Amazingly, all of them survived and the expedition emerged from the canyon the next day. When he reached the nearest settlement, Powell learned that the three men who left had been less fortunate--they encountered a war party of Shivwit Indians and were killed. Ironically, the three murders were initially seen as more newsworthy than Powell's feat and the expedition gained valuable publicity. When Powell embarked on his second trip through the Grand Canyon in 1871, the publicity from the first trip had insured that the second voyage was far better financed than the first.”



Charles and Diana divorce, Aug 28, 1996:

“After four years of separation, Charles, Prince of Wales and heir to the British throne, and his wife, Princess Diana, formally divorce.

In the year following the divorce, the popular princess seemed well on her way to achieving her dream of becoming "a queen in people's hearts," but on August 31, 1997, she was killed with her companion Dodi Fayed in a car accident in Paris. An investigation conducted by the French police concluded that the driver, who also died in the crash, was heavily intoxicated and caused the accident while trying to escape the paparazzi photographers who consistently tailed Diana during any public outing.

Prince Charles married his longtime mistress, Camilla Parker Bowles, on April 9, 2005.”



The two time-consuming things that took up most of my day, were all my own fault caused by things that I did on Saturday.

First one: Saturday, when I had picked up the real milk from the Calico Dairy I had really just wanted to buy half a gallon.  But they only had gallons, so I thought I would freeze half of it.  (When I lived miles away from the AF commissary and could only go to the base twice a month, I used to freeze our milk.)   As long as it is given at least two to three days to thaw completely, it doesn’t affect it. Well, I froze this milk in two quart bottles.  I didn’t fill them up all the way, and left the lids off, just I do when I freeze milk in plastic bottles.  But these were glass, so they cracked.  I had to put the bottles in big bowls in the fridge to let them defrost overnight.   They don’t make bottles like they used to.

It was trash day and so I wanted to get the cracked glass packed up in a little box and out of here.  I had to handpick off the glass from the still mostly frozen milk, piece by piece.  I couldn’t let it go in a trash bag the way it was, as it would have melted and soured in the heat, then the glass would have cut the bag open, made a big stinky mess, and someone could get hurt.


Picture depicting the Bottle Making (Molding) Process How bottles are made
“The entire process of bottle making is almost fully automated. An automated feeder separates a stream of molten glass into individual gobs. These are then dropped through tubes in a moving track. The gob is shaped into what looks like a short bottle with thick walls and is called a parison. The parison is transferred to a final mould made of iron, which moves up and clamps around the glass. Air is blown into the glass till it acquires the final shape of the mould. This procedure involving expansion is called blowing. The bottle is then released from the mould and annealed.”


Second one:  At church on Saturday this sweet little 83-year-old lady named Billie told me about a feral cat that she had fed one time, and the next day it had brought it’s three grown kittens to live on her property.  Billie didn’t want the cats there as they had fleas, and didn’t look healthy.  I had opened my big mouth and said that I would help her get the cats out of there.  Just as I had published this journal, she called me.  Her daughter had loaned her two pet carriers, and she had managed to use food to entice the momma cat and one of her kittens into the carriers and shut the doors.

So I put a couple of carriers, a trap, a wire cage, and a can of cat food in my van, and off I went all the way to her house near Groceville.  I was hoping that I could transfer the cats out of her carriers into mine, so that I wouldn’t have to go all the way back there, but it was obvious that it wasn’t going to happen.  These were too wild to mess with.  I set the trap and the wire cage with dry and canned food, hoping that we could catch the other two while I was there, but that didn’t work either.  So I left the trap and cage there, and Billie had a broom ready to close the door of the cage, if one should get in there.

As Billie had a Conroe address, I went to the Conroe Shelter to drop them off, but apparently she didn’t live within the city limits, so they would not take them.  I had to drive all the way to Montgomery County Animal Shelter on FM 242, which is almost at The Woodlands.  The heavily gloved attendant had trouble getting them out of the carriers, and had to take one carrier to the back to get the cat out of it.  The momma cat sure did look puny, she probably has one of those terminal diseases that feral cats get because they are not vaccinated. 

The shelter had two digital signs over the reception desk.  One showed that there were 807 animals in the shelter, and the other showed that they taken in 144 animals that day, each jumped up by two as I checked the cats in.  It’s a busy place.  You know that their adoptions are no where near that, so many are PTS.  Please spay and neuter your pets.

I called Billie to tell her that I was on my way back with her daughter’s carriers, and she said that she had another kitten in the trap.  So I took her carriers back to her and picked up the trap and wire cage.

By then it was nearly 2.00PM and I had to get home for lunch and to let Misty out.   So I brought the trapped cat back here, and Animal Control picked it up while they were here in the subdivision.

So much for my day.

1 comment:

Dizzy-Dick said...

You are such a great person, helping people and animals all the time. Dang, I didn't know milk still came in glass bottles.