On to Huntsville State Park. We will meet up with Mike and Judy Pluto and others. We stayed busy and unfortunately not many pictures were taken. Most of us stayed up long enough to bring in 2017. We were quickly off to bed.
Huntsville State Park is known for it’s alligator. Not many people get to see it. We got lucky it was hanging out in the water near our camp.
Off to Fredericksburg. Been going to The Texas Hill Country seems like forever. For cyclist it is wonderful. Long rolling ranch roads that take you along the Pedernales River and the Guadalupe and up to beautiful vistas. But first we settle in at Lady Bird RV Park and wake to a lovely sunrise.
We catch up with John McManus. John and Brenda sold their house in Dallas and moved to Fredericksburg last year. They spend their time between Frisco Colorado and here. We meet him at the court house. Across the street is the first jail for the county of Gillespie built in 1886. Boos Lane is one way to get to River Road that follows the Pedernales. Unfortunately the road was closed. Construction of a new bridge stopped us. To make sure no one tried to cross they even had a police officer there.
Turning around we headed west. There are quite a few old abandoned barns and houses on the land that we pass on the ride. But what a treat we stopped at the Hilltop Cafe for lunch. A great 30 mile ride when we get done. YAY!
Great day, a beautiful sunrise to start, fun ride and end it with a lovely sunset.
At the Lady Bird we are set up right along the Gillespie County Airport. It is fun to watch all the planes coming and going. Today a Huey Helicopter dropped by.
Tonight John and Brenda invited us to dinner to Brian’s on 290 in Johnson City. A wine pairing made for a tasty evening. The ribbon above came from their opening night on March 14,2016. Everyone there for the first night signed the ribbon.
John meets us at the trailer for one of our favorite routes. Doogie is hoping to convince John he should run along for the ride.
Center point to Bear Creek to Grape Creek to Old #9 Highway. Turning onto Muesbach Creek this pup dog was quick to make sure we didn’t get too close to his land. He was really fast running up and down the fence line, with only 3 legs. Old boots on the fence post. I wonder if people add to them or the person who owns the fence put them there?
Tonight we catch up with Jimmie Vaughan a long time friend and his new wife, Jesse at the Hill Top Cafe. The best news is they are pregnant with a little boy. Their son’s name is Aiden James Vaughan. It great to see Jimmie so happy.
Today we ride with Brenda and John down Old Mason Rd. to the Cherry Mountain Loop. Off in the hills are the homes that belong to these mailboxes. There are quite a few donkeys in the hill country. They are known for keeping coyotes at bay. They will fight them off. A great ride on some old familiar ranch roads. Nice a warm today. Tomorrow the weather is changing with a front headed this way.
Boy Howdy! Big winds brought in real chilly weather with lots of clouds and rain to boot. We decided to go into town for lunch and shop around. Fredericksburg is a great shopping tourist attraction. It is fun to wander in and out of the shops. If you grow weary of it you can take a break on the many benches along the sidewalks. Or better yet there are many places for tasting the wines of the many winery’s in this region. If that doesn’t work then check out the brewery’s.
We found this bottle cover in Port Aransas and had to sent it to Dr. George Markus, he is a fan of Bat Man. The covers I found out was an entrepreneur’s idea that was featured on the show, Shark Tank and was funded by one of the Sharks.
Our friends Judy and Mike Pluto have this wonderful little dog they adopted named Pedro. In Fredericksburg there is a shop called Dogology. We found this hat and sent it to him. He is quite stylish in it.
John has a plan for today’s ride. We are off to Hye. The historic building here is the general store/post office where LBJ walked to mail letters. Now it is also a great lunch stop. Weather was perfect for their patio. A fun place for looking around a memorabilia.
On the way out of town got a photo of this mail box. Had to send it to Gerald and MaryLynn. They love to fish🐟.
Gosh another day of cycling. The Loop we ride from our campsite takes us down the River Road and on to Bear Creek Road that takes us to Grape Creek Road and back into town on Old #9 Highway. This stretch of road is only part of a long road. The other sections are known as Old San Antonio Road and Old Fred Road. I have tried to find the history of these names with no luck. Especially why it was called Old #9. Love the shaggy sheep and Brenda had a nice conversation with the horse.
Saturday is a great day to ride to Lukenbach. John, Jim and I decided to cruise on over there. Music was happening and the great old Oak Tree was perfect to sit under at a picnic table. Jim was busy playing his air guitar. Along the way the geese in the field honked at us while we passed. A warm 80 degrees in January. Works for us.
Sunday morning we decided a trip into town to the Old German Bakery. Established in 1975, we manage to go at least once when we visit here. Sure enough the wait was going to be a while. With the weather just the right chilly it was comfortable to wait outside. Chatting with others is always fun. We met a couple, Chuck and Pat from New Mexico. Our name was called and when we found we were at a table for 4 we invited them to join us. The waitress let them know the German pancake was quite huge so they decided to share. Could not resist taking their photo with their pancake.
Monday Jim and I rode to Harper. Gosh, we love riding these roads. Rolling and winding through the country side. We get to Harper and pick up some snacks at the convenience store in town. Across the street is the Community Park. We sit down at a picnic table and a fellow joined us. His name is Joe Parker he has lived here his whole life. Only time spent in the service during the war and he met his wife and brought her back here. The cabin was built in the 1860’s. Families McDonald and Taylor lived in the cabin. Life was not easy then. It is said they survived serveral Kiowa Indian raids.
Today we are on our way to Milwaukee for Chris’s son, Noel and his Fiancée, Katie’s engagement party. Dropping off the pups at “Paws and Claws” we head into San Antonio to catch a flight out. A front is coming in a makes a dramatic entrance.
The flight in was flawless and we settled in our hotel. Went to visit Chris and Mary. Chris has changed dramatically. While we are there the kids call at different times trying to arrange for Chris to come to the party that evening. Noel arrives. We do find out that they are actually going to marry this evening. We all have a good laugh because Jim won’t have time to spill the beans. By the time we leave Chris has decided that he will not go. It is sad. We do understand his reasons. On to the party!
We find friends from the bike industry there. Here are the guys. Richard from Moncton, New Brunswick, who owns a bike shop there. Chris Fortune from Madison, who owns Saris, John Burke, owner of Trek, and Jim who is now retired and in charge of trailer travel for the two of us. Also Sara, Chris’s wife.
Noel is on stage with his wife to be who had just made a surprise entrance in her wedding dress. They did a wonderful story about reach other. All of us know a little bit more about them and the paths that eventually lead them to each other…………………… then they became Husband and Wife!
Noel designed this beautiful ring for his wife, Katie.
When we got back to Fredericksburg we made the decision to stay longer. Our concerns about Chris were becoming a reality. He has had goals to meet to keep him going. (Cancer is taking it’s toll) This way we can easily get to an airport. Plans to go to Big Bend have changed.
It’s February 1st. Watching the weather we have decided that we will ride an extended distance to Harper to get 69 miles in to celebrate Jim’s birthday. John and Brenda are happy to join us. On the way back we rode Old Harper Road. This little foal was still getting his legs together.
It’s Super Bowl Sunday and Melody and Jim Yuhn have invited us to Kuhlman winery for a wine pairing. They are in the club and they will pick up their wine as well. The winery was quite busy and everyone was having a great time. We watched the Super Bowl at John and Brenda’s. It was a great game and half time show, Lady GaGa rocked! The only thing that would make it better is if the Cowboys had won it.
Feburary 7th our friend has gone home. Chris passed this morning. Family was there for his passing and sending him off on his new adventure. We will miss seeing you Chris when we are in Milwaukee. We will be among those many many friends you have gathered during your time here. Thank you so much, Chris, for the memories.
The Hill Top Cafe is owned by Johnny Nicolas. It is said he one of the best blues/jazz musicians around. He played with the jazz group Asleep At The Wheel. After traveling, playing music. He took time out to help raise his children with his wife Brenda. She was Greek ( she passed after a having cancer) and Johnny who is Cajuns opened the Hilltop. With their own influences they offer a great menu. Tonight Jim and I invited our park neighbors, Patrick and Lea and Brenda and John to dine and listen to Johnny and the band Hell Bent play. NPR is there to record the evening and will have it on their show in a few weeks.
There is a place in just outside of town The is called Sweet Dreams. All kinds of collectible old cars. Today they had a 1956 Nomad. Jim’s brother has a 1955 Nomad. We had to send him a photo of this one.
The today roads take us to The Black Pig resturant. Started by the ex wife of the fellow who owns the Alamo Springs resturant down the road. There seems to be an amicable arrangement. Above is Petunia who is eager to get a rub by anyone who comes by. Fed her my French fries she really snorked them up.
Jim and I rode today and explored some different directions. Eventually we made our way back to the Silver Creek. One of our favorite places for lunch. They have a comfortable patio with a massive Bodark tree. Today we met these cyclist from Minneapolis, Rhonda and Jim and Mary. It was fun to hear their cycling stories.
It’s Valentine’s Day and also our 31st wedding anniversary. Reservations at the Hill Top made for a special day. Johnny and his buddies played and the food was marvelous. Happy anniversary Jim, I love you😘❤.
Wing night at the Buffalo Nickle we got to visit with some of our favorite people. My favorite, Jim. Then there is Lynn, the daytime bartender. James who owns the Nickle. Troy who handles the bar in the evening and makes an awesome Old Fashion.
This is an awful picture of a cross country cyclist who came in late in the evening with a fellow rider. We brought them 20 chicken wings from the Nickle. Needless to stay they had no trouble eating them up.
On our way to Milwaukee. Chris’s service will be this weekend Feb 17th and 18th. His priest was in Rome. Chris told him to go ahead and go. He was gonna be here anyway. I would like to remember Chris with photos of time spent with him in those last months. Wonderful times spent with a most amazing man.
After the service a luncheon for family and close friends at Kegel’s Inn. At 3:00 an open house began. People came and came. Good stories and memories
We fly home on Sunday and pick up the pups. Trailer is packed and ready to roll. We are off to Tucson for a month. Ready to ride those great bike paths they have there. Fredericksburg was a lot of fun. Awesome riding and many old and new friends. A great place to be.