Monday, October 10, 2016


People have been using the hashtag #fallnotfall to describe how hot it has been in the greater Houston area.
A #fallnotfall image from Instagram. 
But as I like to say, if you want to prosper in Houston, you have to strike when the iron is not hot.  With a rare cold front penetrating the area on October 9, 2016, we struck out for a one-night boondock at Kelly Pond in Sam Houston National Forest.  Here are a few pics of this 28-hour trip.
How's that for the middle of freaking nowhere?!  That's one of the reasons why it's been on my bucket list - because it's about as far as you can get from any development in our area. This aerial photo square is slightly under one mile in each direction from the center smudge, which is the Kelly Pond dry campground.  
We were rewarded with this location on one of the little ponds.  There were two other people in the area, each about an eighth of a mile from us, and none parked on this particular pond. 
With so little time available, we did a bit of hiking, but mostly just hung out in a relaxed fashion and watched the day proceeding.
The cold front had given us various interpretations of a mackerel sky, my favorite kind of cloud formation. 
As the sun got lower, the trees got glowier.  Normally I would not bisect a photo in this manner, but somehow in this location, it seemed to work from an artistic perspective.  Rorschach symmetry.  
A couple of macro shots, because I can't make a post without macro shots.
I am done trying to take conventional pics of mushrooms.  I fail every time - they come out looking like whitish blobs.  Therefore, it's time to investigate weird angles such as this one. 
Insert 'fungus among us' quip here.
I don't know what that hairy stuff is to the right. 
The weather forecasts predicted overnight lows in the sixties.  We got a bit of a surprise on that one.
Ordinarily, this would be very good news.  However, if one is expecting 62 instead of 47, there's an immediate problem with the clothing that was packed.  We had to wait the next day until it warmed up a bit because we were not equipped for this. 
All that cold air gave rise to some interesting mist patterns over the very warm pond.  Watching the mist swirl and dance, I could easily imagine what has led some folks, especially those in historical cultures, to believe in spirits and ghosts.

BTW that's our no-see-um screen across the rear of our Interstate - we sheath the rear doors with contractor-grade trash bags and leave them open all night whenever possible.  I am still working on perfecting that screen, so I haven't made a comprehensive blog post on it yet.  
Yet another across-the-pond shot of our Airstream Interstate, with morning mist. 
We had a minor disappointment in trying to find a connector to the Little Lake Creek Trail from Kelly Pond, in that there was no connector that we could locate (logically there should have been one).  Not a convenient connector, at least.  Little Lake Creek Trail can be accessed by going some distance north on one of the trails associated with Kelly Pond, but I wanted to hike south toward Lake Conroe, so we did not try that option.  The problem is that, even if one goes bushwhacking across country (which we did), there is no way to cross the creek without getting soaked.  Having failed at that attempt, we instead drove for a few miles east pulled over for a hike on a short segment of the Lone Star Hiking Trail, near the southern end of the Stubblefield trail that we hiked about fifty weeks ago.  
Lake Conroe was much higher than last year, owing to our copious rains, and it backed farther up into its many tributaries.  Here's a carpet of green duckweed.
Short trip, short blog post.  Stay tuned as we are now getting farther along with our lithium battery retrofit, and I should have some posts on that soon.

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