Jan. 6 – Feb. 8: Fort Clark Springs – An Acquired Taste

Somehow our wheels take us every year to this strange “resort” in the wilds of Southwest Texas.  And, really, it was like “coming home” (not that we have one yet!).  I won’t describe the place in detail.  You can check it by clicking on Fort Clark Springs and there is a link to the interesting history of this fort, before it became a “resort”.

 
 
 
 

Deer come to be fed

Wildlife gathers here, especially the deer, which come for a daily feed of corn, and browse right outside our window.  Large stags, does, and tiny fauns.

 

Turkeys Gathering the Last of the Deer Corn

Then the wild turkeys strut past and peck at the remains of the corn.  The males (toms) seem to move in their own little flock, though occasionally they will visit and show off their feathers to passing females.   Quite the competition at times!

Roadrunner - They CAN run fast

We are visited by the occasional roadrunner, always a food opportunist.

That's a quail in the left foreground

The bobwhite quail are hard to photograph, since they are small, and run so fast you think they are robots on wheels.

 
 
 
 

Armadillo - Intent on food

Even our simple camera can sneak up on an armadillo.  They root around for grubs.

 

 

  

  

  

 

 
 
 

Armadillo - exiting the scene

But if you get too close, even an armadillo will notice, and take off.
 
 
 

   

 

There are catfish in the creek

This is not a “high-end” park, but it has good facilities, and a lot of charm.  Best of all, it has space: 2,700 acres with trails that wind by the spring-fed creek filled with spectacular water-lilies and basking turtles on logs.  Further down is the “swamp”, which is really a large pond, and flocks of turkey vultures scowl at us from their evening roosts.

Kiskadee - Poor picture ... but it's there

Highlight of our walks are the pair of kiskadees, the biggest flycatcher of all, and a brilliant yellow.  Rare in the USA, it is really a refugee from nearby Mexico.  The picture does not do this spectacular bird justice, but was the best we could manage.

No Threat to Tiger Woods

Keen golfers play “the big course”.  The rest of us wander out in our “scruffies”, and put up with the inferior fairways of the Par-3 course, which has really good green fees:  zero if you stay here!

 

 

  

Sometimes I do succeed at Washers

Besides the weekly Par-3 scramble, there is the strange game of “washers”, the pancake breakfasts, Tuesday pot-lucks, the chili cook-off, an excellent dinner theatre evening, and other events which you can take or leave alone … enjoyed by a friendly and eclectic crowd of RV-folk who have nearly all reached “a certain age”!

 After these many years we have collected friends here, which does mean we gather many insults, as well as dispense them.  There are a few other Canadians around, but we tend to be the only Eastern representatives, meaning we have to defend the larger half of our country.  Bad jokes and tall tales pass round the fire ring, and various informal gatherings as the sun sets on another glorious Texas day.  We relax and enjoy what is usually warm sunny weather, well away from the storms that plague areas closer to the oceans.  Yes it is sometimes unseasonably cold, and the Americans blame the Canadians.  We blame the Alaskans, the Dakotas, and the Russians.  It did actually rain for an hour one day … a rare event, and welcomed by the grass and shrubs.

A cool day is good for a walk

Not exciting, but long stretches of pure enjoyment, and a welcome change from those endless highways!  Talking of which … we are on the road again at the end of our month at Fort Clark Springs.  More about that later.

Finally, a credit to our neighbour Jim from Maine, who had a better camera, a good eye, and contributed some of the photographs.  I have added some more pictures at the end of this post.

 John and Elaine

Axis Stag and Doe

Another Fine Stag

Better grip for Elaine - new finger hinges

John taking his exercise

Time for a "Sundowner"

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4 Responses to Jan. 6 – Feb. 8: Fort Clark Springs – An Acquired Taste

  1. judy and Goran says:

    Nice to hear from you again, we were wondering what was happening, but it sounds as if you are both doing well. I am off to England for two weeks on Sunday, my brother’s 84th birthday, and my niece is going over from Germany for a week. I also have a 1948 school reunion, haven’t seen these people for 60 years!! Take care both of you. Look forward to another posting. Love, Judy

  2. judy and Goran says:

    Nice to hear from you again, we were wondering what was happening, but it sounds as if you are both doing well. I am off to England for two weeks on Sunday, my brother’s 84th birthday, and my niece is going over from Germany for a week. I also have a 1948 school reunion, haven’t seen these people for 60 years!! Take care both of you. Look forward to another posting. Judy

  3. johndytam says:

    Nice to hear from you again, Vi and thanks for the positive comments. We are one posting behind, but hope to remedy that in a week or so. We suffer from lack of wi-fi in some places, and distractions in others. At the moment we are in Rockport, just north of Corpus Christi. The sun is shining, the thermometer is at 70F, and we think a walk on the beach is a good idea! Sorry to hear about your cold weather … but the days are getting longer and the snowdrops will be up before long.

    Hi to Jim … think warm … keep well! … John and Elaine

  4. Vi says:

    Well hello, I have been thinking about you. By the way..great pics. I love seeing the different animals. I did see the bird in the tree and I have taken pics of wild turkeys but…none with the feathers open. that was wonderful.The sunset was worth the drive to Texas.We are having some snow. Not nearly as bad as Toronto and Hamilton and Woodstock though.We seemed to have missed it all winter. It has had it’s cold days ,but not much snow. Gabby’s whole family has been away to Jamaica for 7 days so it has been very quiet around here. Jack ..in your house is very friendly.He keeps Jim covered for beer. ,but not much snow though. Well nice hearing from you and getting pics. Miss you both .take care and have many very good days….Love Vi

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