Road Trip 2015: The Great Awakening (in the Davis Mountains)

January 4, 2015 § 1 Comment

Operation Sunrise was a success:

IndianLodgeSunrise2
The lodge that we are staying at offers complimentary coffee 5- 7 AM, so I had motivation to roll out of bed at 6 o’clock in the morning, stuff myself into two dozen fuzzy layers, and go snag some caffeine.  We asked for a good sunrise spot, and the lady at the reception advised us the Quail Trail, which starts at the parking lot.  She also said that it was steep and probably not the best trail to hike with ice and snow all around.

So, naturally, we put lids on our cups, grabbed some flashlights, and began the ascent in the dark.  As we reached the first hilltop, we could see the sun starting to reach its light over the land, coloring everything in pastel hues:

IndianLodgeSunrise3

It was amazing, to see white plains stretching ahead of you, every blade of grass wrapped in a thick layer of ice, and the glow of the invisible sun slowly taking over.

IndianLodgeSunrise9

It was also very windy; a constant hum of nature’s wind chimes.  It seemed alive, the wind.  (and it devoured us!).  Coming up to the highest hilltop, we were greeted by the sun itself peaking over the horizon.  What perfect timing!

IndianLodgeSunrise6

And then everything began to melt and awaken; ice to water to air.  Trees began raining, and grass grew taller as the ice melted, and birds started reappearing, and it felt as if we were watching the first day of the world.

IndianLodgeSunriseCactus
After the most satisfying breakfast that I had in weeks (eggs and meats and biscuits taste so much better after a two-hour pre-dawn hike!), the only logical procession was to go tackle the other hiking trail in the park: the Skyline Trail.SkylineHike
It was beautiful, and felt exactly how a hike in West Texas should feel like: like you are in the middle of nowhere.

SkylineHike5
It was sunny and beautiful, yet bitterly windy on all of the hilltops.  And in the distance, you could see fields of frost, with cool, blue mountains breaking up the horizon line.

SkylineHike3

I loved every single step.

SkylineHike4
And every spiky palm tree.

SkylineHike2
And every gnarly tree.

SkylineHike6

And every cliff.

SkylineHike7

After two hikes, it was time to devour all of the cookies and chocolates that were available in the office lobby, re-bundle up, and head out to the McDonald Observatory.  Driving alongside the sunset, we had the sun on one side and the moon on the other to keep us company.  The colors here are amazing in the sky:

SunriseRanch
At the observatory, we learned all about the constellations (I feel so inspired to lug out all of my Greek mythology books again), and then looked through a bunch of telescopes at stars and the moon and other space stuff.  My toes were utterly frozen by the end of the night, and my nose was like an icicle, but it was completely worth it.  There are few things in the world that make you feel as small as… things from out of this world.

McDonaldObservatory

 

Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

§ One Response to Road Trip 2015: The Great Awakening (in the Davis Mountains)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

What’s this?

You are currently reading Road Trip 2015: The Great Awakening (in the Davis Mountains) at elefantini.

meta

%d bloggers like this: