Camp Wood, Texas
I’m sitting in the Camp Wood library typing this and it will be a much longer blog post, with a lot more photographs than I have posted for a while.
That’s in direct response to the feedback from the question I asked on the last podcast. I did already suspect that a lot of followers would like to have pictures and at least captions on the blog and not have to listen to the podcast for a quick update.
For any number of different reasons, all of which are quite reasonable. So, to make it up to you all, here are a lot of pictures, with more than just caption!
Charlie and I left Fredricksburg on the saturday morning and walked at a nice easy pace, enjoying being on the road again and just moving. Early midmorning we found Sarah tending to the family farm, fruit and produce stall on the side of the road. We were thirsty and thought we could feed both our hunger and our thirst by buying a watermelon. Said and done!
We then tried to eat it all, we did not want to carry to much extra weight.
Charlie put in a good effort, but it was to no avail. The watermelon was too big and we had to admit defeat with a pretty big piece left. It got loaded onto the Mule, to be consumed for dessert after dinner.
While we were eating, I started talking to Sarah and ended up having a short discussion about Australian stock horses. Always fun and interesting, the things you can find in common with strangers along the road to talk about!
We walked through the day and the road got gradually smaller and smaller, following a creek and winding through cattle paddocks.
We rolled off the road a bit and found a campsite next to the creek, put up the tents and tied to avoid all the thistles, after which we polished off the rest of the watermelon. Dinner was watermelon, bananas and an orange.
I lay watching the sky through the opening of my tent and reflected that this is not a bad sort of life!
Some time during the night, I was woken by a car turning off the road and heading down towards our campsite. Oh no, I thought, looks like somebody does not like us camping here and are coming to tell us. But they stopped about 50 meters away and I could hear what sounded like 2 guys and a girl talking loudly. They hung about for a while and then drove off. Great I thought.
But a while later they were back again. It was difficult to hear what they were saying but I got the impression that they were underage kids that were hiding out to do some drinking. Something that was confirmed the next morning when we found a Bud Light carton right next to where they had been parked. They never approached us, although our tents must have been very visible and after about 40 minutes they drove off again.
Next morning, we continued into Kerville and decided to camp at the KOA campground where we discovered a very useful way to utilise my new watercooler. Perfect for keeping the beer cold!
From Kerville, we headed up to Hunt, had a large lunch, stocked up on ice and water and headed ever westward. We were walking along a river and passed some beautiful spots and took the chance to have a nice siesta on the grass right next to the river. Charlie went for a swim and I just dozed off in the shade.
That night we couldn’t find a way to sneak off the side of the road to camp, the fences were all to high and there were no gates, so we just camped on the side of the road. Turned out to be no problem at all, I think that there were no more than 3-4 cars that passed by during the night, and none of them cared about us.
The next day was tougher. There were some long hills to climb, only to then descend and have to climb right back up again!
We were soaked through when we arrived at the top, but the views were (almost) worth it.
That night we camped under stars on top of one of the climbs, to lazy to put up the tents. I slept fitfully during the night and woke at one stage to the snorting and huffing of what I am sure was a wild hog. It did not get close enough for me to get a good look and when I moved around making some noise, it took off into the scrub.
Wednesday morning, we walked the last stage into Lakey and found the Hog Pen, where we had some food and tried to decide what sort of beer to drink. Not always an easy decision!
After lunch, it was off to the library to use the wifi and catch up on what has happened in the world.
While we were there we met Gretchen, who was very curious about what we were doing and invited us to spend the night with her family. The Lopez family lives in the H.E.B. Camp, where J.J works maintaining the ac and water installations and they took us sightseeing all over the camp, showing us a lot of beautiful spots.
Charlie even got some information about solar power water pumps and we checked out some of the installations working at the camp.
The Blue Hole.
After breakfast, Gretchen drove us back to Leakey and we continued walking, west, towards Camp Wood.
We had just crested the last long hill and were cruising along, enjoying the cool weather (only about 30) when suddenly a red car pulled up alongside. It was Roger, a true gentleman of the road, who had seen us walking and wanted to give us a six pack to ease the journey!
Very much appreciated!
I have always liked rusted,old machinery and would have liked to get closer to take some more photos but as usual in Texas, there was a barbed wire fence and a No Trespassing sign. Charlie has started his own little collection of trespassing signs and took the opportunity to add yet another one.
As we were walking in to Camp Wood, a gentleman carrying a screen door approached and asked if we were from Germany?
We started talking to Casey and it did not take us long to be offered to stay in the small caravan campground he and his wife are building in Camp Wood. It is a charming little place. Well planed and with vintage caravans, one from 1952 and even an Airstream from 63.
Casey was a wonderful host and made sure we were comfortable and had everything we needed.
The Airstream caravans are great looking things with plenty of character and are becoming a real collectors item in the states. Easy to understand why.
We woke up to rain this morning (friday) and decided to spend the day catching up with our blogs and facebook sites rather than heading towards Del Rio.
But tomorrow we really have to get going again if we are to make it to Del Rio before Charlie has to head back to Austin for his flight back to Denmark. It’s important to keep rolling!
We have had to do a lot of repairs on Charlies cart, the Emu, during the last few days. It has proven to be much too weak for the load it needs to carry and is now held together by hose-clamps, a bit of pipe, some sticks, duct tape, some small rocks and a great deal of hope. It is even lubricated by some cashew butter! MacGyver would be proud of us…..
But it only needs to last a few more days and I think we can get it that far. I’m sure Charlie has learned a lot from his test walk already and will probably be building his own Mule like cart when he returns to Denmark. It’s hard to fault the Mule, I am almost afraid to write this as I don’t want to jinx myself, but the Mule has been more or less faultless for close to 9000 km at this stage. Considering that it has been carrying almost 3 times its rated load the last few weeks, that’s pretty impressive!
Keep following my journey towards Sydney and a minimalistic lifestyle and please help me spread the word about both the blog and the podcast. As always, remember to keep walking!