June 16-17: Fredericksburg, TX
Trip Start May 31, 2010
82Trip End Oct 22, 2010
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June 16-17: Fredericksburg, TX
Fredericksburg RV Park
Just before Fredericksburg, there were camels in a fenced yard. Thought we were seeing things until we came back the next day; sure enough camels and even a baby.
Cranky Franks BBQ is the local's place for lunch; not very good at all. Brisket and pork were very dry.
Peach Orchards are everywhere; didn’t realize Texas had so many fruit farms; blackberries, too. Lots of U-pick signs—ripe from the tree is hard to resist. Went to Marburger Orchards, and a teenager working there does a great demonstration about picking the best peach. Off to the orchards we went; in no time picked a small box of peaches (4 lbs); they even had a golf cart that brings you back. Sure was fun and are they ever delicious!
The Visitor Center in downtown Fredericksburg has the best "Attractions and Dining Guide with Maps" of any we’ve seen on our travels. "Curly" the man that spoke with us was so delightful. He loves barbeque and is an expert brisket-making chef. Such fun talking with him!
Couldn’t resist stopping at the Fredericksburg Bakery. The German "pretzel" was our favorite; the shape was the only thing that resembled a pretzel--pastry rolled with nut filling and icing--Oh, so good!
Old Tunnel Wildlife Management Area is another place to see the bats come out at dusk;
guess we’ll try again. Very nice 10-mile drive down a winding, country road; saw a wild turkey and deer. The upper observation area is really nice; bleacher seating. Two volunteer bat experts tell all about the bats and answer questions. There were only two train tunnels built in Texas, and this one is the longest; up to 3 million bats live in the tunnel. Can't believe we waited again and no bats came out before dark. Apparently, at this time of year only males are in the tunnel and they are not in any hurry to eat. The females are having babies (called pups), and the tunnel isn't warm enough for them; they need 100+ degrees; the wind cools the tunnel too much. Best bat viewing is in mid July.
Wildseed Farms is one of the nation’s largest working wildflower farms. Walking through the flower fields in bloom was amazing; rows of flowers and all of them labeled. If you’re a flower lover, this is the place. Spent hours here exploring the 12 different areas. The numerous shops are full of interesting and unique items—gifts, seeds, wine and food, pottery, etc. Loved this place and took a ton of flower pictures. (see below for even more flower pictures)
LBJ Ranch Tour is done in the car with a narrated tape you get at the Visitor's Center. The ranger greeted us with, "A day in Hill Country is always a little better with LBJ in it." First tour stop is the Sauer-Beckmann Living History Farm--fantastic! German immigrants settled in this area; volunteers recreate and tell about life on a farm in 1869. The volunteers spend the day feeding the animals, milking, gathering eggs, slopping hogs, shelling and grinding corn, churning butter, making cheese, maintaining a garden, etc.; everything exactly like they would have back then. A meal is even prepared each day using only what they have on the farm.
Hilda’s Tortillas for lunch; they make their own chips and shells. The spinach & portabella quesadilla was delicious.
Really enjoyed looking at the many interesting old buildings from the late 1800’s; the self-guiding walking tour explained the history of them.
Market Square is a beautiful spot; the gardens are beautiful.
Rodeo trials in Stonewall were being held this evening. First time to see this—barrel racing, calf roping, double cow roping. Guess we’ll have to go to a full rodeo to see the other events. Nice evening—reminded us of sitting in the bleachers for the football games in October.
This ends our stay in "Hill Country." The towns are so well maintained, and everyone is extremely friendly; loved it here!