Friday, October 20, 2006

Vacation re-cap Part 1

DINA and the trip south

Time for a vacation re-cap... I'm a firm believer in cramming as much sightseeing and as many experiences as possible into a vacation, and our October vacation was no exception. We covered a lot of ground and saw some cool stuff (and even had plenty of time to lounge around by the beach and pool).

I'll start from the beginning... Mom had previous plans to take M to visit our relatives in Ohio. As tempting as that possibility was, K and I decided to take L to the beach at Port Aransas (yes, it was a difficult choice, but we stand by our decision).

On Saturday October 7, we loaded up our 2 cars and headed south. K's car was full of flowers for the wedding of one of her sisters (which would be on the 14th)... we made plans to meet at her other sister's home in Round Rock, so we could deliver the flowers before we continued south. I would also be leaving my truck in Round Rock during our trip to the coast.

Driving on my own to Round Rock allowed me do some railfanning on the way down... on "Day in North America", no less. (DINA is an event sponsored by "Railroads Illustrated" Magazine -- formerly CTC Board -- on which railfans throughout North America are encouraged to shoot railroad photos during a 24 hour period and then submit them for publication in a special issue of the magazine.) It's on a different day each year, and this year's DINA just happened to be on October 7.

I had hoped to shoot some photos along the former Santa Fe south of Cleburne to Temple, but it turned out that the southbounds were running late and wouldn't be through Ft. Worth for a while. So I stayed closer to home and got some shots around Saginaw and Ft. Worth instead...

southbound Roadrailers at Saginaw

coal loads meet empties at Saginaw yard

one of the Ft. Worth & Western's new locomotives - GP50 # 2011

When I'd had my fill, I headed south and met up with K and L in Round Rock. We drove down to Lockhart for an early dinner at the legendary Kreuz Market (more on that later; the Lockhart barbecue experience rates its own separate blog entry to be featured in a separate installment) and then drove to San Marcos to visit K's other sister and her fiance. We spent the night near San Antonio, and continued south on Sunday morning. On Sunday morning at Shiner, we stumbled across a surprise move on the railroad... the KCS business car train heading north on the UP Cuero Sub as it traveled from Laredo to Shreveport. I would loved to have gotten a shot of it passing the Spoetzel Brewery, but no good vantage points were available, so I opted instead for this view of the train passing the downtown area.

KCS business car special at Shiner, TX - UP Cuero Sub. 10/8/2006

We briefly detoured north, following the train to Flatonia, attempting to get more shots. Then we set our sights on Corpus Christi and Port Aransas. I hadn't been to Corpus since 1996, and had never been to Mustang Island or Port Aransas, so I was covering some new ground on this trip.

getting closer...

We arrived at Port "A" around 1600... the Cowboys-Eagles game was on the tv in the lobby of the condo office when we went to check in. Between trips to unload the car and get settled in our condo, as well as a short trip to the beach, I managed to catch at least half of the game -- including all three Drew Bledsoe interceptions, and the vomit-inducing finish. In case you missed it, the Cowboys lost, 38-24. But I didn't care... well, at least not that much... we were at the BEACH!

K and L enjoy the Texas coast

Stay tuned for Part 2...


nr: John Steinbeck - Tortilla Flat

np: Fred Eaglesmith & the Flathead Noodlers - Balin'


Post a Comment

<< Home